There were a few fireworks at the very end of today's press briefing that took place after the morning sessions. It's clear what's going on here is that there are an awful lot of bishops sitting in the Synod who are not really expressing theological thoughts about some of these issues. Obviously some of them are, but some of them are getting their theology mixed up.
And in one particular episode right at the very end of the press conference, one last question came up from the press gallery, and on stage was the archbishop of Gatineau, Quebec, Paul-André Durocher, who was asked, "What about this question of the discipline versus the doctrine of administering Holy Communion to divorced and civilly remarried Catholics? Is it safe to say that this issue is still under debate? And if so, what does that say about the question of the dogma and the discipline?"
And he gave an answer that stunned a number of us inside the press room. He said, 'If you want dogma, go read Denzinger. The Synod will be deciding and talking about whether this is a discipline or it's a dogma."
That caused one priest who was sitting very, very close to us to sort of go into a rage. He actually confronted the archbishop on the way out of the door and said, "All you bishops, everything you're doing here, is this conciliarism, which is destroying the Church! You are confusing the faithful. You don't know the Faith."
There was a very, very strong reaction; you could see the division between faithful Catholic journalists and the more liberal crowd reporting — for America Magazine and National Catholic Distorter (I mean Reporter) and all this. There is quite the division here. It's really funny because every day they stand up and tell us there's no division. And then they stand up and say something divisive, and the whole thing falls apart again. This is very interesting, the way this is all playing out.
But hold on! This is only day two. Day two of 21! And I am shocked. I cannot believe a bishop said, "Oh well, you want dogma, go to Denzinger. We'll decide whether doing the discipline differently affects dogma."