Cardinal George Pell of Australia, who is the current Prefect of the Secretariat for the Economy, was interviewed by Francis X. Rocca of Catholic News Service, and issued some strong remarks about the Synod and where it will—and will not—go:
Cardinal George Pell said working-group reports from the Synod of Bishops on the family finally give a true picture of the assembly's views, counteracting what he characterized as a misleading midterm report.
"We wanted the Catholic people around the world to know actually what was going on in talking about marriage and the family and, by and large, I think people will be immensely reassured," Cardinal Pell, prefect of the Secretariat for the Economy, told Catholic News Service Oct. 16, the day the reports were published.
"We're not giving in to the secular agenda; we're not collapsing in a heap. We've got no intention of following those radical elements in all the Christian churches, according to the Catholic churches in one or two countries, and going out of business," he said. ...
The midterm report was "tendentious, skewed; it didn't represent accurately the feelings of the synod fathers," said Cardinal Pell. "In the immediate reaction to it, when there was an hour, an hour-and-a-half of discussion, three-quarters of those who spoke had some problems with the document."
"A major absence was Scriptural teaching," he said. "A major absence was a treatment of the church tradition," including teaching on the family by Pope Paul VI, St. John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI.
Cardinal Pell also states that just 3 of the 10 small groups were in support of Cardinal Walter Kasper's proposal to allow for some divorced and remarried Catholics to receive Communion, calling that proposal a "stalking horse". He indicated that Kasper's proposal was just the "tip of the iceburg," an attempt to open the door to even more radical measures: "They want wider changes, recognition of civil unions, recognition of homosexual unions. The church cannot go in that direction. It would be a capitulation from the beauties and strengths of the Catholic tradition, where people sacrificed themselves for hundreds, for thousands of years to do this."
The texts of the ten groups are available on the Vatican website. While only three of the ten are available in English, the substance and approach are notably different than what was in the text of the Relatio. For example, from the text from the group (Circulus Anglicus "A") moderated by Cardinal Raymond Burke: