[…] Nevertheless, the law given to Moses aims at protecting the wife from arbitrary domination by the husband, even though according to the Lord's words it still carries traces of man's "hardness of heart" which was the reason Moses permitted men to divorce their wives.101, 1611 Seeing God's covenant with Israel in the image of exclusive and faithful married love, the prophets prepared the Chosen People's conscience for a deepened understanding of the unity and indissolubility of marriage.102 The books of Ruth and Tobit bear moving witness to an elevated sense of marriage and to the fidelity and tenderness of spouses. The promise made between a man and a woman before God and the Church, which forms a binding bond unto death as a couple committed to each other Who administers the sacrament of Matrimony? 93 Cf. 147 LG 11 § 2. The Church may establish impediments, including diriment impediments which invalidate a marriage and forbidding impediments which make marriage illegal. 84 CIC, can. It is a lifelong union, ending only with the death of one spouse. The doors of homes, the "domestic churches," and of the great family which is the Church must be open to all of them. God instituted Matrimony for the special purpose of entrusting to the married couple the privilege of … 142 Cf. even in the eyes of society. 817. They should encourage them in the vocation which is proper to each child, fostering with special care any religious vocation."169. 127 CIC, can. "154 This human communion is confirmed, purified, and completed by communion in Jesus Christ, given through the sacrament of Matrimony. 116 Cf. According to the Council of Trent this dogma has always been taught by the Church, and is thus defined in canon i, Sess. In a case of disparity of cult (between a Catholic and a non-baptized person) a dispensation is required for validity. 108 Cf. FC 19. Matrimony being a sacrament in which the contracting parties themselves are the ministers, it is plain that its essential forms must be expressed not in Latin but in the vernacular, and this fact alone at once introduces a certain element of divergence. It excludes a union with any other person so long as the marriage exists. . God himself seals the consent of the spouses. It is good, very good, in the Creator's eyes. 109 Cf. The punishments consequent upon sin, "pain in childbearing" and toil "in the sweat of your brow,"100 also embody remedies that limit the damaging effects of sin. Eph 5:32. 140 1 Cor 7:14. By this grace they "help one another to attain holiness in their married life and in welcoming and educating their children."148. In the joys of their love and family life he gives them here on earth a foretaste of the wedding feast of the Lamb: V. THE GOODS AND REQUIREMENTS OF CONJUGAL LOVE, 1643 "Conjugal love involves a totality, in which all the elements of the person enter - appeal of the body and instinct, power of feeling and affectivity, aspiration of the spirit and of will. The example and teaching given by parents and families remain the special form of this preparation. This is the consequence of the gift of themselves which they make to each other. 156 Cf. "152, The unity and indissolubility of marriage. 1 Cor 10:17. Disparity of cult can further aggravate these difficulties. 112 Cf. 161 FC 84. 89 GS 47 § 1. Jn 2:1-11. Spouses who with God's grace give this witness, often in very difficult conditions, deserve the gratitude and support of the ecclesial community.158, 1649 Yet there are some situations in which living together becomes practically impossible for a variety of reasons. FC 20. 111 Cf. 110 Eph 5:25-26,31-32; Cf. On this topic of the Sacrament of Marriage, let’s begin with the definition of marriage. Where the flesh is one, one also is the spirit. 122 Cf. After the fall, marriage helps to overcome self-absorption, egoism, pursuit of one's own pleasure, and to open oneself to the other, to mutual aid and to self-giving. Since it signifies and communicates grace, marriage between baptized persons is a true sacrament of the New Covenant..112. CIC, can. The relationship of love of a woman and man in the life long commitment of marriage is to be honoured and protected. 128 GS 48 § 1; OCM 45; cf. 1607 According to faith the disorder we notice so painfully does not stem from the nature of man and woman, nor from the nature of their relations, but from sin. 133 Cf. According to the original divine plan this conjugal union is indissoluble, as Jesus Christ affirmed: “What God has joined together, let no man put asunder” (Mark 10:9). 143 Cf. The three elements of mortal sin are: Grave matter (i.e., gravely wrong). FC 21. "166 When they were converted, they desired that "their whole household" should also be saved.167 These families who became believers were islands of Christian life in an unbelieving world. The presence of the Church's minister (and also of the witnesses) visibly expresses the fact that marriage is an ecclesial reality. How can I ever express the happiness of a marriage joined by the Church, strengthened by an offering, sealed by a blessing, announced by angels, and ratified by the Father? "170 Thus the home is the first school of Christian life and "a school for human enrichment. Each family member, in accord with their own role, exercises the baptismal priesthood and contributes toward making the family a community of grace and of prayer, a school of human and Christian virtue and the place where the faith is first proclaimed to children. The seven sacraments are as follows: Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist, Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults, Reconciliation, Anointing of the Sick, Marriage and Holy Orders.... Of all the sacraments, the sacrament of marriage is the most controversial because it was not included in the original sacraments. How wonderful the bond between two believers, now one in hope, one in desire, one in discipline, one in the same service! 162 GS 48 § 1; 50. Gen 2:24. It is also a public statement about God: the loving union of husband and wife speaks of family values and also God's values. Christian marriage in its turn becomes an efficacious sign, the sacrament of the covenant of Christ and the Church. Mt 19:8; Deut 24:1. 120 Cf. Marriage, SACRAMENT OF.—That Christian marriage (i.e. The role of pastors and of the Christian community as the "family of God" is indispensable for the transmission of the human and Christian values of marriage and family,135 and much more so in our era when many young people experience broken homes which no longer sufficiently assure this initiation: 1633 In many countries the situation of a mixed marriage (marriage between a Catholic and a baptized non-Catholic) often arises. Christ not only restored the original order of matrimony but raised it to the dignity of a sacrament, giving spouses a special grace to live out their marriage as a symbol of Christ’s love for his bride the Church: “Husbands, love your wives as Christ loves the Church” (Ephesians 5:25). Gen 1:28; 3:16-19. 1609 In his mercy God has not forsaken sinful man. Gen 3:12. The example and teaching given by parents and families remain the special form of this preparation. 135 Cf. Since Matrimony establishes spouses in a public state of life in the Church, its liturgical celebration is public, taking place in the presence of a priest (or of a witness authorized by the Church) and other witnesses. 123 FC 67. "For there are eunuchs who have been so from birth, and there are eunuchs who have been made eunuchs by men, and there are eunuchs who have made themselves eunuchs for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. Terms of Endearment. 153 Mt 19:6; cf. Its lifelong nature and exclusiveness are guaranteed by contract. These renounce the great good of Matrimony to concentrate on the things of the Lord and seek to please him. 154 FC 19. 131 Cf. 4. CIC, can. Differences about faith and the very notion of marriage, but also different religious mentalities, can become sources of tension in marriage, especially as regards the education of children. 2,8,6-7:PL 1,1412-1413; cf. "110, 1617 The entire Christian life bears the mark of the spousal love of Christ and the Church. For a valid marriage the consent must have as its object true Matrimony, and be a human act which is conscious and free and not determined by duress or coercion. In the Eastern right, the priest is the minister. 1663 Since marriage establishes the couple in a public state of life in the Church, it is fitting that its celebration be public, in the framework of a liturgical celebration, before the priest (or a witness authorized by the Church), the witnesses, and the assembly of the faithful. What appears good only in comparison with evil would not be truly good. 134 Cf. 115 Mt 19:12. . DS 1800; CIC, Can. For Catholics, the Sacrament of Marriage, or Holy Matrimony, is a public sign that one gives oneself totally to this other person. The most excellent good is something even better than what is admitted to be good. "The well-being of the individual person and of both human and Christian society is closely bound up with the healthy state of conjugal and family life. 1659 St. Paul said: "Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the Church. CIC, can. 1 Cor 7:16. The Elements of a Natural Marriage As Fr. They will lead Christian lives especially by educating their children in the faith. The symbols that are used during weddings are: Rings: The rings symbolise God's not finishing love, just as the cirlce has no start or finish. There are seven: Baptism, Confirmation (or Chrismation), the Eucharist, Penance, the Anointing of the Sick, Holy Orders and Matrimony. Matrimonial consent is given when a man and a woman manifest the will to give themselves to each other irrevocably in order to live a covenant of faithful and fruitful love. The seven sacraments touch all the stages and all the important moments of Christian life: they give birth and increase, healing and mission to the Christian's life of faith. Whoever praises it makes virginity more admirable and resplendent. 98 Cf. Matrimony, or Marriage, is another sacrament that consecrates for a particular mission in building up the Church, and that provides grace for accomplishing that mission. 1627 The consent consists in a "human act by which the partners mutually give themselves to each other": "I take you to be my wife" - "I take you to be my husband. 1632 So that the "I do" of the spouses may be a free and responsible act and so that the marriage covenant may have solid and lasting human and Christian foundations, preparation for marriage is of prime importance. Gen 2:22; 3:16b. Differences about faith and the very notion of marriage, but also different religious mentalities, can become sources of tension in marriage, especially as regards the education of children. THE SEVEN SACRAMENTS OF THE CHURCH, CHAPTER THREE Marriage is not a purely human institution despite the many variations it may have undergone through the centuries in different cultures, social structures, and spiritual attitudes. 1642 Christ is the source of this grace. Therefore marriage comes into the legal competence of the Church. 159 Cf. 1626 The Church holds the exchange of consent between the spouses to be the indispensable element that "makes the marriage. They arise from the fact that the separation of Christians has not yet been overcome. 125 Cf. Mt 19:11. A sacrament, as we know, is an outward sign that confers an inner grace. What is the sacrament of Matrimony? 102 Cf. The spouses are the ministers of the sacrament of marriage because the mark—the external sign—of the sacrament is not the wedding Mass or anything the priest might do but the marriage contract itself. . The Church does not have the power to contravene this disposition of divine wisdom.146, 1641 "By reason of their state in life and of their order, [Christian spouses] have their own special gifts in the People of God. The Christian community is called to help these persons live out their situation in a Christian manner and in fidelity to their marriage bond which remains indissoluble.159. FC 28. Gen 2:18; Mt 19:4; Gen 1:28. What are the elements of marriage? "103, 1612 The nuptial covenant between God and his people Israel had prepared the way for the new and everlasting covenant in which the Son of God, by becoming incarnate and giving his life, has united to himself in a certain way all mankind saved by him, thus preparing for "the wedding-feast of the Lamb."104. Christ himself elevated the natural institution of marriage to the dignity of a sacrament during his public ministry. 145 GS 48 § 2. GS 22. LG 41. How does sin threaten marriage? It is a lifelong union, ending only with the death of one spouse. 118 Cf. 160 Mk 10:11-12. They arise from the fact that the separation of Christians has not yet been overcome. As Fr. Council of Trent: DS 1799). 103 Song 8:6-7. By creating man and woman he called them to an intimate communion of life and of love in marriage: “So that they are no longer two, but one flesh” (Matthew 19:6). Although the dignity of this institution is not transparent everywhere with the same clarity,88 some sense of the greatness of the matrimonial union exists in all cultures. The sacrament of Matrimony establishes a perpetual and exclusive bond between the spouses. It aims at a deeply personal unity, a unity that, beyond union in one flesh, leads to forming one heart and soul; it demands indissolubility and faithfulness in definitive mutual giving; and it is open to fertility. In such cases the Church permits the physical separation of the couple and their living apart. The Church permits the physical separation of spouses when for serious reasons their living together becomes practically impossible, even though there may be hope for their reconciliation. 85 Rev 19:7, 9; cf. The Church, since she is faithful to her Lord, cannot recognize the union of people who are civilly divorced and remarried. 10,1:PG 48,540; Cf. For this reason (or for other reasons that render the marriage null and void) the Church, after an examination of the situation by the competent ecclesiastical tribunal, can declare the nullity of a marriage, i.e., that the marriage never existed. . Council of Trent: DS 1813-1816; CIC, can. God said to them in blessing “Be fruitful and multiply” (Genesis 1:28). CIC, can. It is also a public statement about God: the loving union of husband and wife speaks of family values and also God's values. 107 Mt 19:6. It is therefore appropriate that it should be celebrated in the public liturgy of the Church; - Marriage introduces one into an ecclesial order, and creates rights and duties in the Church between the spouses and towards their children; - Since marriage is a state of life in the Church, certainty about it is necessary (hence the obligation to have witnesses); - The public character of the consent protects the "I do" once given and helps the spouses remain faithful to it. Their distinctions remain, and yet in their marriage we find that there is something there that is greater than the sum of the persons involved. IV. God himself is the author of marriage. 148 LG 11 § 2; cf. Gen 1:26-27. . Gal 6:2. Gen 1:27; 1 Jn 4:8, 16. They are both children of one Father and servants of the same Master, undivided in spirit and flesh, truly two in one flesh. In such cases the Church permits the physical, Today there are numerous Catholics in many countries who have recourse to civil. 1665 The remarriage of persons divorced from a living, lawful spouse contravenes the plan and law of God as taught by Christ. 100 Gen 3:16, 19. 1622 "Inasmuch as it is a sacramental action of sanctification, the liturgical celebration of marriage . Acts 18:8. Because of original sin, which caused a rupture in the … 1151-1155. 150 Eph 5:21; cf. Because of original sin, which caused a rupture in the God-given communion between man and woman, the union of marriage is very often threatened by discord and infidelity.
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