It should be enough to observe that no fewer than four of the five “dubia” submitted in September of last year to Pope Francis by cardinals Walter Brandmüller, Raymond L. Burke, Carlo Caffarra, and Joachim Meisner (RIP+) hinge precisely on the consistency, or lack thereof, between “Amoris Laetitia” and “Veritatis Splendor.” And these “dubia” still remain completely open, in part because of Pope Francis’s refusal to take them into consideration and to meet with the four cardinals.
But what were the genesis and objective of “Veritatis Splendor”? To answer this question there is one exceptional witness: Joseph Ratzinger.
As Müller’s predecessor at the helm of the congregation for the doctrine of the faith, he contributed in a substantial way to the writing of that encyclical.
But even after his resignation as pope, he continues to judge “Veritatis Splendor” as being of “unchanged relevance,” to be “studied and assimilated” even today.
In 2014, in a thoughtful chapter for a book in honor of John Paul II, Ratzinger pointed to none other than “Veritatis Splendor” as the most important and relevant of that pope’s fourteen encyclicals.
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