The Kasper Proposal & Father Ratzinger
#1
http://www.pathsoflove.com/texts/ratzing...-marriage/

On the Question of the Indissolubility of Marriage

Remarks on the dogmatic-historical state of affairs and its significance for the present

Originally published in German: "Zur Frage nach der Unauflöslichkeit der Ehe: Bemerkungen zum dogmengeschichtlichen Befund und zu seiner gegenwärtigen Bedeutung" in Ehe und Ehescheidung: Diskussion unter Christen, Kösel-Verlag, München, 1972, pp. 35-56.

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Two selections from the text:


"Following the examinations of Fransen it is today entirely clear what the Council of Trent condemned and what it did not condemn: it did not condemn the eastern practice, leaving it rather as a valid part of a “rite”, which can certainly continue to exist in the framework of a Church union."

"Where a first marriage broke up a long time ago and in a mutually irreparable way, and where, conversely, a marriage consequently entered into has proven itself over a longer period as a moral reality and has been filled with the spirit of the faith, especially in the education of the children (so that the destruction of this second marriage would destroy a moral greatness and cause moral harm), the possibility should be granted, in a non-judicial way, based on the testimony of the pastor and church members, for the admission to Communion of those in live in such a second marriage. Such an arrangement seems to me to be for two reasons in accord with the tradition: ..."
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#2
He later changed his mind:

http://www.doctrinafidei.va/documents/rc...ed_en.html
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#3
Quote:Where a first marriage broke up a long time ago and in a mutually irreparable way, and where, conversely, a marriage consequently entered into has proven itself over a longer period as a moral reality and has been filled with the spirit of the faith, especially in the education of the children (so that the destruction of this second marriage would destroy a moral greatness and cause moral harm), the possibility should be granted, in a non-judicial way, based on the testimony of the pastor and church members, for the admission to Communion of those in live in such a second marriage. Such an arrangement seems to me to be for two reasons in accord with the tradition: ..."

Even if he changed his mind later, I agree with the above. I know too many couples who have been married invalidly for years and years, have children raised in the faith, grandchildren already, whereas the first marriage lasted a very short time. My daughter and son-in-law are in a marriage like this, a civil marriage because his first marriage is still considered valid by the Catholic Church. He was denied an anulment on a marriage that lasted seven weeks. He was 17 years old at the time.
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#4
(08-02-2014, 08:32 AM)SCG Wrote: My daughter and son-in-law are in a marriage like this, a civil marriage because his first marriage is still considered valid by the Catholic Church. He was denied an annulment on a marriage that lasted seven weeks. He was 17 years old at the time.

That does seem a bit strange, and maybe he should see his priest about applying for an annulment again.  The problems with the original Ratzinger proposal are (1) it is unclear how it could be squared with the principle of the indissolubility of marriage, and (2) it seems to reward the behavior of people who got remarried in violation of the Church's understanding of the indissolubility of marriage, as opposed to the people who took seriously Our Lord's warning that this behavior amounts to adultery.  Attempting to prove that the original marriage was null is one thing, but to assert that a valid, consummated marriage between two baptized persons can just end, while both parties survive, is to reject both Scripture and the definitions of Trent.
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#5
(08-03-2014, 01:25 PM)spasiisochrani Wrote: That does seem a bit strange, and maybe he should see his priest about applying for an annulment again.

They might be talking to a priest right now (my daughter has dropped hints), but after 20 years of marriage and three kids I bet they find it rather pointless. I think they’d be doing it more to please me and my mother. Because if it’s denied again they’re not going to break up or live as brother and sister. I agree with Ratzinger’s statement that “the destruction of this second marriage would destroy a moral greatness and cause moral harm. “ It would be more damaging than the first sin, you know? That would definitely be their situation.

Quote: Attempting to prove that the original marriage was null is one thing, but to assert that a valid, consummated marriage between two baptized persons can just end, while both parties survive, is to reject both Scripture and the definitions of Trent.

I agree with you here, but then that opens another question. I understand the Catholic Church having jurisdiction over Catholic marriages, but how is it that the Catholic Church has any jurisdiction whatsoever over non-Catholic marriages? Even between baptized persons. Why is the validity of marriages outside the church even a concern of ours? 
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#6
(08-04-2014, 12:39 PM)SCG Wrote: I understand the Catholic Church having jurisdiction over Catholic marriages, but how is it that the Catholic Church has any jurisdiction whatsoever over non-Catholic marriages? Even between baptized persons. Why is the validity of marriages outside the church even a concern of ours?

The Church has jurisdiction over all the baptized, even if it often as a matter of course chooses not to exercise it over those who do not identify as Catholics or associate with the Catholic Church.  Likewise, the valid Sacraments that are performed by non-Catholics properly belong to the Church--they are the Catholic Church's sacraments.

From a practical perpective, it's a concern of ours because if they ever convert, their marital situation can affect their reception of the sacraments. For example, if someone was married and divorced, converts to Catholicism, and then wants to marry someone else, we need to know if that is even possible.  Likewise, if a person is in a second marriage and converts, whether they are living in continuous manifest sin or not is an issue when it comes to whether one can receive the other sacraments.
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#7
SaintSebastina Wrote:From a practical perspective, it's a concern of ours because if they ever convert, their marital situation can affect their reception of the sacraments. For example, if someone was married and divorced, converts to Catholicism, and then wants to marry someone else, we need to know if that is even possible.

If a baptized Catholic marries in a civil ceremony - which we know is automatically invalid - and that person later divorces, goes to confession and re-enters the church, will that person have to pursue an annulment of the civil marriage if he or she wants to get married again in the Catholic Church? If yes, that doesn’t seem right, somehow. Seems like the Tribunal would be taking their money to investigate a situation we already know the answer to. If no, that also doesn’t seem right, because then a Catholic could get civilly married and divorced over and over, only to waltz down the aisle of a Catholic church when finally meeting “Mr. Perfect.” 

Does the Church also act with jurisdiction over marriages of the non-baptized, like a Jewish couple getting married in a Jewish ceremony by a Jewish rabbi – if one of them decides to become a Catholic later? What about persons of no religion who get married on the beach? How about a Las Vegas wedding?

The Church needs to really re-think stuff like this, because these kinds of marriages are happening more and more. This isn’t the Middle Ages. I mean if we smoothed out the legalities, we might be able to better determine what to do theologically.

Maybe.
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#8
I'm not sure how it works with marriages between unbaptized persons. 

I think your point about things being easily determined to be invalid, like a civil-only marriage by Catholics, would go toward certain proposals being made to improve the process for nullity judgments (for example, maybe the parish priest can just make that decision in that kind of circumstance).

I've also read a canon lawyer suggest the opposite approach, of removing the presumption that someone who doesn't marry according to the Church's rules by that fact demonstrates a defect in the intention to do what the Church does, thereby making the sacrament invalid. Poorly catechized Catholics are often like Protestants, intending to enter a Christian marriage, but confused about the details (ie despite their ignorance, they have the proper general intention and could therefore enter into a valid sacrament).

Anyway, I agree with you that this needs to be sorted out.  I think this Synod needs to be like the medieval ones which dealt with other issues, where they actually drew up concrete canon laws that sorted out clearly how certain cases should be handled, but I expect we'll just get a mountains of prose with nothing concrete like they usually turn out these days.
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#9
(08-05-2014, 11:31 AM)SCG Wrote: If a baptized Catholic marries in a civil ceremony - which we know is automatically invalid - and that person later divorces, goes to confession and re-enters the church, will that person have to pursue an annulment of the civil marriage if he or she wants to get married again in the Catholic Church? If yes, that doesn’t seem right, somehow. Seems like the Tribunal would be taking their money to investigate a situation we already know the answer to.

In that case, there is a "documentary process", which involves presenting the Tribunal with the parties' baptismal records and evidence that the marriage was contracted without the proper form.  My understanding (which, admittedly, is from the 1980s) is that the annulment in these cases takes about a month and costs less than $50.00.

http://tribunal.archspm.org/documentary.html
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#10
(08-07-2014, 10:22 AM)spasiisochrani Wrote:
(08-05-2014, 11:31 AM)SCG Wrote: If a baptized Catholic marries in a civil ceremony - which we know is automatically invalid - and that person later divorces, goes to confession and re-enters the church, will that person have to pursue an annulment of the civil marriage if he or she wants to get married again in the Catholic Church? If yes, that doesn’t seem right, somehow. Seems like the Tribunal would be taking their money to investigate a situation we already know the answer to.

In that case, there is a "documentary process", which involves presenting the Tribunal with the parties' baptismal records and evidence that the marriage was contracted without the proper form.  My understanding (which, admittedly, is from the 1980s) is that the annulment in these cases takes about a month and costs less than $50.00.

http://tribunal.archspm.org/documentary.html

Well, I guess I should overlook the fact that they are getting an anullment on a marriage that was never considered valid to begin with. And I guess I won't quibble about charging them only "less than $50"... I don't want to quibble....but.....  :eyeroll:

Thank you for the info and the link.
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