Skip to comments.Pope rejects easier divorce rules [Ecumenical]
Posted on 09/15/2008 8:23:16 AM PDT by NYer
LOURDES, FRANCEPope Benedict said yesterday the Roman Catholic Church could not recognize "irregular unions" of Catholics who divorce and remarry outside the church.
"Initiatives aimed at blessing irregular unions cannot be admitted," he said in an address to French bishops in the shrine city of Lourdes.
Throughout the developed world, the church has been struggling with how to administer to Catholics who have divorced and remarried without an annulment an ecclesiastical declaration that their first union is null and void but want to remain fully active in the church.
The church does not recognize divorce. It considers the first marriage still valid and teaches that those who divorce and remarry cannot receive communion unless they abstain from sexual relations with their new partner.
While bishops in several countries have been pushing for some opening on the difficult issue, the 81-year-old Pope said the church could not change its teachings on the indissolubility of marriage because it was instituted by Christ.
In other remarks, the Pope ordered bishops to make space for traditionalists who use the Latin mass. A papal decision last year to allow a much wider use of the old-style mass a move that traditionalists demanded for decades but which was opposed by liberals has met with resistance in some countries, particularly France.
"Everyone has a place in the church. Every person, without exception, should be able to feel at home and never rejected," the Pope said, referring to those who preferred the Latin mass instead of the new liturgy in modern languages introduced after the Second Vatican Council ended in 1965.
On a pilgrimage yesterday morning to the shrine where the faithful believe the Virgin Mary appeared to a peasant girl 150 years ago, the Pope told a crowd love can be stronger than all the evil in the world. He said a mass for nearly 200,000 people near the sanctuary built over the spot of the apparitions.
Pilgrims flocked from dozens of countries for the Pope's three-day visit, his first to France. Many were in wheelchairs or stretchers.
When he arrived on Saturday night, Benedict prayed in the grotto where Bernadette Soubirous said the Madonna appeared and spoke to her 18 times, and he drank water from a spring that believers say has healing powers.
Just for the record:
A man or woman who becomes divorced can still receive the Sacraments of the Church, AS LONG AS THEY DO NOT REMARRY!.
Imporotant words there................as long as they do not remarry. (This does not take into account those who have received an annulment — three examples from my personal friends:
1) The husband never wanted to have children in the first place and consequently moved in with a man.
2) The husband sexually abused the wife by videoing sexual actitivities and other irregularities. (Ver demanding — it was not a marital union at all
3)The husband was an alcoholic, knocked the woman down the steps and other brutal physical abuse.
Just take out the VER
Yes, the headline is misleading. The Church has no rules for divorce, because divorce is a civil government function. The Church has rules regarding who may receive Communion; those who are in ongoing non-marital or extra-marital sexual relationships should not receive.
The church does not recognize divorce.
True but it also does not apply to divorcees who choose to live with their partners rather than marry. You and I come from a different generation than this where marriage was still proper. Now, anything goes. Many choose not to 'bother' with marriage but bring their babies to be baptized and then never return again.
I recently met a man still shell shocked from his wife doing the same thing. Is this some new trend?
It’s good to hear that the RCC didn’t water down the bible and is still one of the few, if not the only, Christian Church that follows Jesus’ words in Mt:19
I totally agree. Unfortunately, given the tremendous growth of secularism and relativism, the Catholic Church is rapidly losing members to non-denominational Evangelical churches and others where their sinful lifestyles are tempered with "Jesus Saves" messages. These folks have no intention of changing their lifestyle but want a church where they can worship God, despite their chosen lifestyles and where they won't have to go to confession.
I spent most of Sunday reflecting on this. Father and I have worked hard to encourage parents to enroll their children in religious education. It is a constant shock to meet parents with children (aged 10+) who have never been baptized and/or never attended religious education. They span the range from one family that brought the kids last year (aged 12 and 10), had them baptized, receive the Sacraments of First Penance and First Communion and then leave, never to return. Yesterday I met a family with 3 children - the oldest is 10 and has never attended religious education. She has not made First Penance nor First Communion.
A while back, I recall reading an article about Pope Benedict XVI in which he commented that it might be time to shrink the Catholic Church. At the time, it surprised me. Given what I have encountered in our small parish, I am not surprised. My one consolation is that in society, the pendulum swings. Eventually, those who left the Church may return, if for no other reason than that they are dieing and want to be buried from their parish church (we've seen lots of that, too).
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