“Unfortunately, there are representatives of the Church, including bishops, who have let themselves be somewhat blinded by secularized society,” said Cardinal Gerhard Müller, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.
In an interview with the popular Polish site, Nasz Dziennik, Müller went on to say that some have been so influenced by secular society that they have been “pulled far from the central question of the faith and the teachings of the Church.”
The cardinal blamed the media, international organizations, and governments of various countries for “sowing confusion in people’s minds.” As an example, Müller said that “in many countries, relationships are destroyed, and this also applies to the Christian model of marriage and family. The truth of marriage and the family is relativized.”
These trends, he added, “have found their way into the church and among the bishops.” Nonetheless, he went on, “We have Christ and the Gospel. This is our point of reference, and the foundation for the only correct teaching of the Church.”
Müller emphasized that the Church “has no power to change that which comes from the teaching of Christ. With respect to marriage this is primarily defined by the words, ‘What God has joined together, man must not divide,'” he said.
According to the prefect, in the synod, the bishops vote on a pastoral approach but not on doctrine. “We have received the truth from God and we embrace it, but we cannot vote on it. You don’t make something true by voting on it,” he said.
When asked about a new opening in the church for homosexuality, Müller reiterated the Church’s negative assessment of homosexual acts. “An active practice of homosexuality is not acceptable,” he stated. “And the Church cannot change such an assessment, since these acts are contrary to the natural law and are sinful,” he said.
“The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches that homosexual persons are called to chastity,” Müller said. “Pope Francis has said he is not trying to create some new doctrine for the Church, but he is trying to show that no one is judged by the Church because of their homosexual orientation. No one is trying to discriminate against these people. But you have to make it clear that the Church considers homosexual acts as sinful,” he said.