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Explain the Teaching of the Catholic Church regarding Marriage, Divorce and Annulment

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Introduction

Explain the Teaching of the Catholic Church regarding Marriage, Divorce and Annulment In the eyes of Roman Catholics, marriage is seen as an ideal- a complete commitment between two people for the rest of their lives. Although Catholics do not expect their married lives to be endlessly happy and free from troubles, they are determined that marriage should be given a chance to work with both couples making an active contribution to the union. The start of every marriage should be love, and therefore a couple need to be attracted to each other in order for their marriage to last, and in order for this to happen the couple must find each others personality attractive and the couple must respect and value each other whilst holding a deep affection for one another. Marriage in the eyes of God is highly important, with Jesus performing the miracle at the wedding of Cana, to produce more wine so that the couple were not embarrassed. The fact that Jesus performed this miracle demonstrated that Jesus wished the couple to enjoy their wedding day, and so marriage is highly important. However, it must be noted that not all marriages are free from hardship, and through a number of reasons a couple may decide to end their marriage legally and in the eyes of God, however the Catholic church has various guidelines about how this can and cannot happen, which is the subject of this essay. ...read more.

Middle

Marriage is therefore indissoluble in the eyes of the Catholic Church, and the bond cannot be broken, "What God has made one flesh, do not split asunder", which is taken from a quote by Jesus in Marks Gospel (Mark 10:6-9). A couple should live and learn based on the teachings outlined above. As the marriage is permanent in the eyes of the Catholic church a couple should be totally committed to each other, even in times of hardship. They have to support each other through these times in order to be successful. Another important factor is that sexual intercourse should take place within marriage, with aim of producing children, which is seen as one of Gods greatest gifts as a result of this covenant. Furthermore children resulting from a marriage need to be considered when times are hard, in that divorcing will impact children's livelihoods. It is therefore highly important in the Catholic viewpoint that marriage is worked at and the family unit retains integrity at all times. Divorce in the Catholic Church is regarded as totally prohibited. This term is used to describe the legal termination of a marriage, which leaves the couple free to marry who they like. In Catechism 2385, it states that divorce is immoral as it introduces disorder into the family and society. and it acts like a plague on mankind. ...read more.

Conclusion

It can take place for a number of reasons namely, if a couple did not understand their vows, or one partner was forced to marry; One of the couple didn't intend to have children, one or both of the partners never intended to remain faithful, or the marriage was not consummated (no sex), incest, lying between the partners and finally concealment from one or both of the partners. Also notable is if one partner was not a baptised Catholic. For an annulment to take place a marriage tribunal needs to take place in front of a priest who will decide on each case. In conclusion, we can see how Catholics overall want marriage to be successful, with the vows taken in marriage to be permanent. Marriage cannot be broken, and so divorce is morally wrong and a sin against God. Therefore divorce and subsequent remarriage are seen as adultery. Although quite strict, the Catholic Church is trying to work in the best interests of a couple. Although arguably a couple if they wanted to split in the Catholic Church they could just get an annulment, however a key difference between annulment and divorce, is that annulment is designed to protect both parties, in case they get into something they did not understand. Divorce is the breaking of the covenant, fully aware of marriage vows taken and that breaking them will result in the churches discontent. Overall marriage is an ideal which the Catholic Church attempts to preserve through strict guidelines, laid out by God in the bible. ...read more.

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