Sections of Amoris Laetitia are copied from an essay written more than 20 years ago by a close associate of Pope Francis, a Catholic University professor has revealed.
Writing in Crux, Michael Pakaluk shows that a footnote in the controversial Chapter 8 of Amoris Laetitia,
and other passages from the papal document, are drawn almost verbatim
from an article published in 1995 by Archbishop Victor Manuel Fernandez.
Since the Argentine archbishop is known to be an adviser to the Pope,
and is believed to have drafted the encyclical Laudato Si’, it seems most likely that Archbishop Fernandez also helped to draft Amoris Laetitia, and incorporated some of his own previous work into the document.
The use of material from an earlier essay raises new questions about
the papal document, Pakaluk observes.
Are the passages in question the
teaching of the magisterium, or the thoughts of Archbishop Fernandez?
Has the archbishop deliberately exploited his position to give his
ideas—which were controversial at the time of their first appearance,
and contain at least one grossly inaccurate quotation from St. Thomas
Aquinas—the stamp of papal approval?
And has Archbishop Fernandez
needlessly embarrassed the Pontiff by using his own words.
observes, “In secular contexts, a ghostwriter who exposed the author he
was serving to charges of plagiarism would be dismissed as reckless.”