Language Sites
  • UCAN China
  • UCAN India
  • UCAN Indonesia
  • UCAN Vietnam
News » International

Married couple could head new Church Council for Families

Cardinal and papal advisor outlines wide range of possible reforms

Married couple could head new Church Council for Families

Picture: Catholic San Francisco

Marco Tosatti for Vatican Insider/La Stampa International

February 20, 2014

Mail This Article
(For more than one recipient, type addresses separated by commas)

La Croix [a French catholic publication] has interviewed Oscar Rodriguez Maradiaga, President of the Commission of eight cardinals chosen by Pope Francis to advise him on Curia reform. The Honduran cardinal and Archbishop of Tegucicalpa gave a broad overview of what the landscape of the Church’s central government could look like in the future. The original French article by Sébastien Maillard can be read here. The cardinal stressed, amongst other things, his idea of creating a Congregation for the Laity (lay people are currently represented by a Pontifical Council).

“The Church definitely needs this. We have a Congregation for Bishops, for Religious Life and for the Clergy, but the Laity only gets a Pontifical Council even though they are a majority within the Church. We cannot go on like this. After the Second Vatican Council all the laity had was a Secretariat. A Pontifical Council is limited because it has no legal power. This is why we need a real Congregation.”

According to the cardinal, within this Congregation there should also be a Pontifical Council for the Family, “headed by a married couple. Why not? It would be a wonderful sign. And it would be great to have a Congregation for the Laity within the Church. I can tell you that the Spirit is pushing in this direction. More and more lay men and women are taking the joint responsibility of being leaders in the Church.”

Regarding the fate of the Institute for the Works of Religion (IOR) and its possible elimination, Cardinal Rodriguez Maradiaga said “everything depends on what the reports say. But it is better to heal a sick man than bring someone back from the dead. I think we will avoid amputating any arms.”

Maradiaga also discussed the Commission’s work in terms of the Church’s central government, saying that he and the other seven cardinals “have now noted down all our observations regarding the Secretariat of State. We have stressed that the Secretary of State is meant to essentially be the Pope’s secretary. He is not a prime minister or a viceroy.”

The Honduran cardinal – who has given so many interviews it almost seems he has been given a “mandate” to talk about reform – mentioned the possibility of creating one single financial body. “It could be called a financial secretariat. It is a very reasonable idea and I believe it is necessary in order to help us be more organised and serve better. Finances are split between the various dicasteries. We currently have the Administration of the Patrimony of the Holy See, the Prefecture for the Economic Affairs of the Holy See, the Governorate of Vatican City, the IOR… Maybe, but this is one of the things we are discussing; it could be an idea for one person to be responsible for everything.”

Full Story: Cardinal Maradiaga says married couple are to head the Council for Families 

Source: Vatican Insider/La Stampa

Want more stories like this?
Sign up to receive UCAN Daily or Weekly newsletters (You can select one or more)
Want more stories like this?
Sign up to UCAN Daily or Weekly newsletters
You can select one or more
First Cut
Morning Daily
(Morning Daily)
Full Bulletin
Afternoon Daily
(Afternoon Daily)