On September 28, 2017, the Jesuit journal Civiltà Cattolica published a report on Pope Francis’ private interview with several Jesuits during his journey to Columbia.
The remarks from the pope came after he had received the Filial Correction written by several clerical and lay scholars on Amoris Laetitia. The document was handed to him in person on August 10 before being published on September 24, 2017.
On September 10, Pope Francis met in the sanctuary of St. Peter Claver in Carthagena de Indias in Columbia with 300 representatives of the African American community accompanied by Jesuits. The sovereign pontiff then spoke in private with 65 members of the Company of Jesus.
This informal interview was transcribed by Fr. Antonio Spadaro, director of the Civiltà Cattolica and a close friend to the pope.
During the meeting – according to Civiltà Cattolica quoted by Imedia – the pope said that the different commentaries he has read on Amoris Laetitia, including the Filial Correction, are “respectable”. But Francis insisted that in order to understand the controversial Exhortation, “you need to read it from the start to the end. Beginning with the first chapter, and to continue to the second and then on … and reflect”.
Pope Franics: "Amoris Laetitia is Thomist"
The Holy Father also insisted that the Apostolic Exhortation is orthodox and in keeping with Catholic doctrine:
Some maintain that there is no Catholic morality underlying Amoris Laetitia, or at least, no sure morality,” he declared with seeming sadness, adding, “I want to repeat clearly that the morality of Amoris Laetitia is Thomist, the morality of the great Thomas (sic).
In an interview with FSSPX.News on September 26, 2017, Bishop Fellay, Superior General of the Priestly Society of St. Pius X, explained that the Filial Correction that he signed was:
...a filial approach on the part of clerics and lay scholars, troubled by the heterodox propositions in Amoris Laetitia”, adding that “Christ’s teaching on marriage can not be surreptitiously changed on the pretext that the times have changed and that pastoral care should adapt by offering ways to bypass doctrine.