Discernment Through the Lens of Amoris Laetitia and Richard Gula: The Effect of a Cross-Reading
Bernard Kasamata Kamulinso
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The publication of Amoris Laetitia (hereafter, AL), Chapter Eight, which deals with "accompaniment and discernment," has attracted the attention of many readers, to the point that it has been considered as the key to reading the entire exhortation. Several studies have shown that the idea of discernment in AL, regarding the issue of divorced and remarried people, brings a fresh wind which helps to avoid an "idealism" that judges marital situations and persons solely on the basis of conformity or non-compliance with the law. However, the aforementioned approach is criticized by other scholars for whom the object of discernment is not an "adaptation" to the customs (mores) of our time which would correspond to “laxity” and to the change of the doctrine of the Church. From the foregoing discussion, it results a confrontation which categorizes the protagonists into progressives and conservatives, thus preventing a serein and fruitful debate about the approach suggested in AL. To address this problem, several studies have attempted to elucidate or corroborate one of the positions. But it turns out that the source of "images" that form our convictions has not yet been inspected. We suggest a cross-reading of chapter eight of AL and Moral Discernment of Richard Gula, in order to produce a critical reflexive effect, and self-criticism regarding the factors that influence the perception of situations and values.

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