Michael G. Lawler
Humanae Vitae: On July 29, 1968, Pope Paul VI published his encyclical on the regulation of birth, introducing what we call here the Humanae Vitae affair. Now approaching its golden jubilee, the encyclical was published at a time of twofold crisis, one theological, the other cultural.
Regarding Catholic funeral rites for a deceased person in a same-sex marriage, public scandal is more likely to be caused by bishops' restrictive behavior than by permitting a funeral for a gay spouse.
Pope Francis' conscience model, emphasizing individual conscience, differs from his two predecessors and provides a faithful, merciful guide to Catholics, especially couples in irregular situations.