Divorced and remarried are not excommunicated, pope says at audience

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August 5, 2015

Pope Francis greets newly married couples during his weekly audience in Paul VI hall at the Vatican Aug. 5. (CNS photo/Giampiero Sposito, Reuters) See POPE-AUDIENCE Aug. 5, 2015.

Pope Francis greets newly married couples during his weekly audience in Paul VI hall at the Vatican Aug. 5. (CNS photo/Giampiero Sposito, Reuters)

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Catholics who have divorced and are civilly remarried “are not, in fact, excommunicated — they are not excommunicated — and they absolutely must not be treated as if they were,” Pope Francis said.

Resuming his Wednesday general audiences Aug. 5 after a month’s break, Pope Francis returned to the series of talks he has been giving on the family. It was the 100th general audience of his papacy.

At his last audience, June 24, he talked about the damage caused especially to children when couples fight and hurt each other. “Today,” he said, “I want to draw our attention to another reality: how to care for those who, after the irreversible failure of the matrimonial bond, have undertaken a new union.”

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