CHICAGO (ChurchMilitant.com) - The head of the Chicago archdiocese was met with mockery by incredulous Catholics after he published a tweet claiming Amoris Laetitia is in "full fidelity" to traditional Church teaching on marriage.
"You're living in an alternate reality if you truly believe that," one person said in response to Cdl. Blase Cupich's tweet Tuesday declaring that the pope's apostolic exhortation "expresses with 'absolute clarity' marriage doctrine in full fidelity to traditional Church teaching."
"This is the single most compactly contrary-to-fact statement I have ever seen attributed to a bishop. Congratulations," read another tweet.
"How can a Catholic accept a declaration of 'absolute clarity' from a Cardinal who has spent his career in the moral gray?" asked another individual, referring to Cupich's reputation for pushing Holy Communion for those in "irregular unions," as well as his promotion of the seamless garment and other liberal positions.
Some accused Cupich of presenting "alternative facts" and "fake news."
A number of Catholics responded by asking that Pope Francis answer the dubia, the set of questions submitted by Cdl. Raymond Burke and three brother cardinals seeking clarity on confusing doctrinal statements in Amoris Laetitia. The dubia were submitted privately to the Holy Father in September, but after two months of silence, the cardinals decided to go public with their questions.
The backlash was immediate, with liberal prelates — including Cdl. Cupich — opposing the four cardinals and falsely painting them as enemies of the Holy Father — a tactic used by progressives to discredit orthodox opponents. In a November interview in America, Cupich said of such cardinals:
Surely, there are some who are struggling with the vision offered by the pope, and, yes, sadly, there are some who are opposed to him and do not like him, as Cardinal Wuerl said. I use the word sadly, not in terms of it being sad for the pope, but for those who oppose him or working against him because in reality they lack an understanding of what it means to be a bishop in the Catholic Church.
Cupich came under fire in August 2015 for equating the evil of Planned Parenthood's sale of aborted babies' body parts with "joblessness" and a "broken immigration system." He was also among the few vocal prelates who voiced support for the LGBT community after gay Muslim Omar Mateen gunned down 49 victims at an Orlando, Florida gay nightclub.
In a letter read to the Chicago's Archdiocesan Gay and Lesbian Outreach (AGLO) before Sunday Mass, the Chicago cardinal declared that the archdiocese stands with "the whole lesbian and gay community."
Cupich also hinted at the possibility of offering Holy Communion to active homosexuals. When the question was put to him by a reporter at a press conference at Rome's 2015 Synod, the cardinal responded, "I think that gay people are human beings, too, and they have a conscience. And my role as a pastor is to help them discern what the will of God is ... ."
Emphasizing the primacy of conscience, Cupich said, "When people come to a decision in good conscience, then our job with the Church is to help them move forward and to respect that. The conscience is inviolable, and we have to respect that when they make decisions, and I've always done that."
Cupich has a history of willingness to offer the Eucharist to those not in communion with the Church. In November 2014, when asked point blank on CBS' Face the Nation whether he would give Holy Communion to pro-abortion politicians, Cupich answered, "I would not use the Eucharist or, as you say it, the Communion rail as a place to have those discussions or a way in which people would be ... excluded from the life of the Church" — this in spite of the fact that his position contradicts canon 915 of the Catholic Code of Canon Law, which states that those "obstinately persevering in manifest grave sin are not to be admitted to Holy Communion."
And in a televised funeral Mass in April 2015 over which the then-archbishop presided, the Protestant governor of Illinois, in violation of the norms of the Church, was given Holy Communion — a sacrilege. When Church Militant reached out to the archdiocese to ask whether it had contacted the governor's office ahead of time to advise that non-Catholics should not approach to receive Holy Communion, the archdiocese responded by saying that "when any person presents himself or herself for Holy Communion, the Minister of Communion presumes that the person can receive Communion."
The cardinal was originally slated to participate in a leftist event in June 2015, but pulled out over a "scheduling conflict," as he was going to be in Rome for the Synod. The event, called "New Faces, New Voices, New Ways of Being Church," took place October 24 at Dominican University, and included a line-up of dissenting Catholics who support gay "marriage" and women's ordination, among other causes. All of the speakers write for the National Catholic Reporter, a well-known dissident journal that routinely promotes the homosexual lifestyle and in some cases access to abortion.