The following comes from an October 13 Catholic News Agency article:

Cardinal Gerhard Müller spoke with an Italian daily on Tuesday about the synod and about a letter allegedly sent to Pope Francis from a number of cardinals about its process, calling the leak of a private document scandalous.

“I’m not saying whether I signed or not. The scandal is that it makes public a private letter of the Pope,” the prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith told Corriere della Sera Oct. 13.

“The intention of those who willed its publication is to sow strife, to create tensions. I think that’s clear.”

The text of a letter, and a list of 13 cardinal signatories, were published by Vaticanista Sandro Magister the day before. Several of the prelates listed have denied having signed the document, and others have contested the text published by Magister.

Cardinal Müller is among the list of signatories published by Magister, as well as an alternate version published by Jesuit-run America magazine.

After discussing the letter with Corriere della Sera, the cardinal turned to larger issues of the synod, and Francis’ papacy.

He took umbrage at “those who sustain that in the Roman Curia there is opposition to the Pope. Those who say and write that there are wolves, that Francis is surrounded by wolves. This is an offensive expression, and criminal. I am not a wolf against the Pope.”

He added that the debates should not be characterized as between “liberals” who are approved by the masses, and unpopular “conservatives” who defend the doctrine revealed by Christ.

Cardinal Müller then turned to the divorced-and-remarried.

“Persons are suffering because their marriage is broken, not because they cannot receive Communion. For us the center of the Eucharist is the consecration: each Christian has the obligation to attend Mass, but not to receive Communion. Concentrating only on this one point resolves nothing.”

What the cardinals really did say

The following comes from an October 13 Christian Newswire article:

Thirteen Cardinals may or may not have written to Pope Francis to express their concerns about the direction of the Ordinary Synod on the Family. But one fact is clear, four of the Cardinals who allegedly signed the now infamous private letter did contribute essays to the recently published Eleven Cardinals Speak on Marriage and the Family, one of the most important books released addressing the issues before the Synod.

Cardinals Robert Sarah, prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments; Carlo Caffarra, archbishop of Bologna; Willem Jacobus Eijk, archbishop of Utrecht; and Jorge L. Urosa Savino, archbishop of Caracas, allegedly signed an October 5th private letter to Pope Francis addressing concerns about problematic elements to the “Instrumentum Laboris” as well as the potential dominance of the theological/doctrinal issue of Communion for the divorced and civilly remarried. While these concerns may be at question in this private letter, these same four Cardinals clearly spell out their concerns in their own essays that make up a portion of the controversial book released just before the beginning of the Synod.