Cardinal Francis Arinze of Nigeria strongly defended the Catholic faith against the proposal put forward by a German Cardinal at the Synod on the Family in Rome, who said last week that it is “unrealistic” for the divorced-and-remarried to refrain from sexual activity – what the Church following Christ calls “adultery.”
However, Cardinal Arinze told LifeSiteNews in a video interview on Saturday, “The Ten Commandments are given to us by God. Have we any authority to say it is ‘unrealistic’ to expect people to keep any of the Ten Commandments, not only number six and number nine, also number five – abortion, killing of innocent people, number seven – stealing, whether small sums of money or big?”
“We cannot go on the reasoning that it is ‘unrealistic,’” added the cardinal, prefect emeritus of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments. “You can say it is not easy. I accept that. Christ never promised us that it is easy to follow him. He said those who want to be his disciples must ‘take up their cross daily and follow me.’”
If we can tell the divorced and remarried that they no longer have to follow the commandment about not committing adultery, then why should we not tell other people that they no longer have to follow the remaining commandments, he said.
“You might as well tell the man who is walking in the office, and his secretary is a lady, that it is unreasonable to expect them to be chaste,” he said. “Likewise, it would be ‘unreasonable’ to expect people to be honest when they see a chance to take government money, or to take another person's property.”
“If you say, we cannot expect people to be chaste in that situation — to refrain from sexual relations — then you are challenging the fundamental teaching that sexual relations are correct only between husband and wife in a proper marriage, and that between any other two people, it is wrong, whether they are heterosexual or homosexual. It is wrong because it is against the order established by God the Creator.”