The use of unsound reasoning to answer moral questions, or casuistry, is a trap against us and God. Pope Francis stressed this during his homily at Casa Santa Marta this morning.
The Holy Father reflected on the nature of marriage, drawing from today’s Gospel from St. Mark which recalled Christ’s response to the Pharisees on the question of divorce. The Pharisees, he said, tried to take Jesus moral authority through the use of casuistry. “Is it lawful for a husband to divorce his wife?” the Pharisees asked Jesus. Behind the casuistic thought of the Pharisees, “there is always a trap.”
“Jesus responded, asking them what the law said and explaining why Moses made that law that way,” the Pope explained. “But he doesn’t stop there: from casuistry He goes to the center of the problem and here he goes directly to the days of Creation.”
“This reference of the Lord is very beautiful: ‘From the beginning of creation, God made them male and female. For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh. So they are no longer two but one flesh.”
The Pope went on to say that Christ refers to the “masterpiece of Creation”: man and woman. Describing between Adam and Eve as a “poetic moment”, the Holy Father said that Jesus confronts this casuistic thought with the initial plan of love by God.
“The Lord takes this love as the masterpiece of Creation to explain the love He has for his people,” the Holy Father said. “And [He goes] a step further: when Paul must explain the mystery of Christ, he does it in relation to, in reference to His Spouse, because Christ is married, Christ was married, He married the Church, his people.”
“Like the Father married the People of Israel, Christ married his people. This is the history of love, this is the history of the masterpiece of Creation! And in front of this journey of love, this icon, casuistry falls and becomes sorrow.”
Pope Francis reasons known only to himself, wants to talk about everything but what Jesus said on something so relevant to the Synod. Obviously, in the modern Church, Jesus Christ is a real problem rather than The Answer.