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Cardinal Farrell: Priests Have No Role to Play in Marriage Prep October 10, 2017

Posted by Tantumblogo in abdication of duty, asshatery, cultural marxism, Dallas Diocese, disaster, error, family, foolishness, Francis, General Catholic, Revolution, scandals, secularism, self-serving, Society, the struggle for the Church, unbelievable BS.

Hey, that cardinal’s hat wasn’t going to land on his head all by itself.  It had to be earned.  Kevin Farrell may not pray much, have a great depth of spirituality, or even know much theology, but he sure as heck know who the piper is, and what tune is being called.

There are actually two aspects to this report.  One is the outrageous statement made by former Dallas bishop and now Cardinal Farrell, and the other is how the Catholic media presented this statement, at least in the form of the headline.

To cover the claim, first:

Marriage ministry needs to be done by married couples because priests have “no credibility in this area,” Cardinal Kevin Farrell, prefect of the Dicastery for Laity, Family and Life, told a church gathering. [So, marriage is in the direct area of responsibility for Cardinal Farrell]

Delivering the keynote address to 500 delegates from the Diocese of Down and Connor at the Faith and Life convention in Belfast Sept. 30, Farrell discussed Pope Francis’ 2016 apostolic exhortation “Amoris Laetitia” (“The Joy of Love”) and appealed to parishes to establish study groups on the document and to train couples to teach, prepare, guide and accompany married couples. [Giving a talk to a large group of laity concerning “Faith and Life,” Cardinal Farrell chose to make a bold statement]

On the role of priests in marriage accompaniment and preparation, he said they had “no credibility when it comes to living the reality of marriage” even though they may know the principles, the philosophy and the theology. [This is manifestly incorrect.  Priests have the primary responsibility to train and form lay people in every aspect of life, but especially regarding the Seven Sacraments. More in a second.]

Speaking to Catholic News Service afterward, the Dublin-born former bishop of Dallas said parishes would have to be prepared to train laypeople for such a role, which he saw as a new model of accompaniment in line with the pope’s vision for the church…….[So is this really about what’s best for couples, or who provides the best catechesis, or is it about implementing an ideological agenda in the Church?]

……..Ministering by couples to couples is better done by “people who have walked in their shoes,” the cardinal said. He admitted he did not “have a clue” how to answer some of the questions on couples’ difficulties, which his own nieces and nephews had put to him. [Well that’s more the shame for you and your family, not to mention the Diocese of Dallas which you led for nearly a decade, and now the entire Church.  This claim is based on a logical fallacy, that only those who live an experience can speak sensibly on it. In point of fact, being buried knee deep in an experience can actually warp one to a point that making a sensible, helpful contribution on it is impossible – one is simply too close to the problem.  Even though Cardinal Farrell makes some statements about the laity needing to be trained, lay-led catechesis in the vast majority of the Church (re: Novus Ordo world) has been and remains a disaster.  Most laity are very poorly and narrowly educated, and what education they have received has been dominated by leftist/modernist suppositions.  It is very hard not to see this as yet another avenue by which to undermine the sanctity of marriage.  And, by the way, Cardinal, lay people have been doing the lion’s share of what a paltry excuse for “marriage prep” exists in the Church today.  Priests, largely sequestered in their offices as administrators and occasional “sacramental administrators,” have only rarely played a substantial role in marriage prep for decades.  Indeed, my wife and I received exceedingly poor marriage prep, consisting of two 1 1/2 hour meetings, from an old hippy couple in Austin, both divorced and remarried.  What shining example we received!  We didn’t learn diddly squat, except that sex is groovy and we should contracept.  There are exceptions to this sad practice, which has done so much already to undermine marriage in the Church, and turn American Catholics into creatures indistinguishable from the broader culture when it comes to marriage, and now you wish to visit the American/Western disaster upon the broader world (or has Cardinal Farrell so adopted his beloved leader’s ideology that he has convinced himself that it’s 1955 again, and mean old priests, casting poor divorced souls out of church left and right, refusing to hear their confessions, are giving lay people really severe, strict, morally impossible catechesis. What planet do these guys live on – or are their arguments really so weak they must create a straw man Church)?  Anyway,  those exceptions are far too rare, and generally concentrated in traditional parishes and the few brave, persecuted, orthodox Novus Ordo priests.]

“I have no experience of that and the majority of priests don’t have that experience,” Farrell said, noting that many of the married couples who attended the 2014 and 2015 Synod of Bishops on the family insisted that more lay couples be involved in marriage ministry. [Priests absolutely DO have, or CAN have, experience of a beautifully lived marital vocation, in the form of the witness provided by their parents!  This is where many great Saints and moral theologians, such as Alphonsus Maria de Ligouri, gained their experience, and it was sufficient to guide dozens of generations of married Catholics to sanctity.  It is only in this period of cold hearts and dead faith that the leadership of the Church find it necessary to invent all kinds of new failed programs to replace the old, successful ones, the ones that were given up for dead because they failed to “resonate with the new man.”  But the new man is the same as the old, it is only the faith of the new men in leadership which has failed.]

Well, we can certainly see that in Cardinal Farrell, Francis found the right man for his job of remaking the Church in his own image.

Now, if you’re like me, Cardinal Farrell was speaking quite boldly, even definitively.  He left no doubt that he feels that priests “have no credibility in this area.”  That’s a quite definitive statement.

So how did the Catholic press, especially Catholic News Service writer Sarah MacDonald, report this really remarkable declaration from Farrell?  Get this headline: “Prefect suggests couples can be better at marriage prep than priests.”  Hmmm.  Is that your takeaway from this?  That Cardinal Farrell suggested that priests could be better at marriage prep than priests? It read to me like he just came out and said it, like a bald statement of fact.

And so we see that fake news is not limited to the secular world!  That’s how you got Trump, Mzzz. MacDonald.

Beyond the differences, he is a Peronist Pope” – Lieutenant Governor of Buenos Aires, March 14, 2013, the day after Francis was elected Pope.

You’ll get one or two posts today, and like it!


1. The Lord's Blog - October 11, 2017

Say What? I cant believe what I’m reading in these Priests. They are blinded by evil.

2. The Lord's Blog - October 11, 2017

Reblogged this on Jean'sBistro2010's Blog and commented:

3. Julia Augusta - October 11, 2017

The Cardinal has implied that Our Lord himself had nothing to say about marriage because He never got married! Ridiculous.

4. c matt - October 11, 2017

By their logic, Bergoglio better shut up about war and gun ownership since he has never fought a war or owned a gun.

Baseballmom - October 11, 2017

And with his logic priests cannot speak to the issue of abortion as they do not experience pregnancy… it goes on and on…

Tg - October 11, 2017

Thanks for the chuckle.

5. Baseballmom - October 11, 2017

Or is he slyly opening the door to a married priesthood? Just a thought…

Tim - October 11, 2017


6. David - October 11, 2017

The statement made by the former bishop of our diocese is an insult to many priests who dated in college, experienced a positive family life growing up, and it even undermines the experience of priests who are not “lifers” (i.e. entered formation after spending time in the secular world, paid bills, had an apartment, played sports, dated, etc.). Like Tantumblogo mentioned, priests DO learn about marriage from parents, and quite a few “lifers” received good examples from their parents.

I saw this quote yesterday and like Tantumblogo, I was very disappointed with our former bishop. This statement is also a put down to the late vocation priests (some who are widowers) and those married clergy who were accepted under the Pastoral Provision.

7. David - October 11, 2017


Your marriage prep story sounds typical for many. Married friends over the years tell me that they really had to look and figure out who to talk to about marriage prep, and this often determined the priest and the Parish where they got married. Good to know many are still married.

My younger brother went to Engaged Encounter with his now wife (4 years ago) and said he and his wife were one of the only couples present that was not playing house. Others have told me there are good discussions about conflicts, compromise, money, time management, communication, but it seems that prayer is overlooked. In fact, an old roommate of mine went through Engaged Encounter, and he and his girlfriend found it a waste of time (okay, that was 20 years ago), but they did have some one on one marriage prep with a priest that they told me was really worthwhile.

8. Margaret Costello - October 15, 2017

Does this poor Cardinal remember that every single priest is married to a Bride? The Holy Catholic Church? Did priests fall out of the sky and just walk onto the altar one day? Did they not witness marriage in their parents, grandparents, friends etc. Do the priests themselves not marry via their vocation and thus have to live a life of self sacrifice, service and love to others? This cardinal is so secularized he doesn’t even know who he is anymore. Very sad:+( God bless~

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