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Pope says judgments on annulments must be impartial and pastoral
Catholic Herald ^ | 1-24-2014 | Francis X Rocca

Posted on 01/24/2014 7:00:14 PM PST by ebb tide

Addressing the Vatican court primarily responsible for hearing requests for marriage annulments, Pope Francis said judges on church tribunals should show “imperturbable and impartial balance” as well as the “delicacy and humanity proper to a pastor of souls.”

The Pope made his remarks today to officials of the Roman Rota at a meeting to inaugurate the tribunal’s judicial year.

“You are essentially pastors,” he told the officials. “As you carry out your judicial work, do not forget that you are pastors. Behind every file, every position, every case, there are persons who wait for justice.”

Pope Francis has said that church law on marriage is a topic that exemplifies a general need for mercy in the Church today, and that it will be among the subjects of discussion at this October’s extraordinary Synod of Bishops on the “pastoral challenges of the family in the context of evangelization.”

In his speech to the Rota, the Pope said a judge on a Church tribunal must sympathise with the “mentality and legitimate aspirations” of the community he serves, and thus render “justice that is not legalistic and abstract, but appropriate to the needs of concrete reality.”

Such a judge “will not be content with superficial knowledge of the reality of the persons who await his judgment, but will recognize the need to understand deeply the situations of the parties,” the Pope said.

“The legal dimension and the pastoral dimension of ecclesial ministry are not in conflict,” Pope Francis said. “The church’s legal activity, which takes the form of service to the truth in justice, has in fact a profoundly pastoral meaning, because it is aimed at the good of the faithful and of the edification of the Christian community.”


TOPICS: Apologetics; Catholic
KEYWORDS: annulment; communion; divorce; francis
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Here's the end run around Holy Communion for the divorced and remarried: Hand out "annulments" as if they were candy.
1 posted on 01/24/2014 7:00:14 PM PST by ebb tide
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To: ebb tide

They annulled Dead Ted’s marriage.

That ended my association with the church.


2 posted on 01/24/2014 7:03:34 PM PST by Da Coyote
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To: Da Coyote

You are always a Catholic if you were baptized a Catholic. You may be an inactive one. But something that happened to Ted Kennedy does not make you a non-Catholic.

Think about it, please.


3 posted on 01/24/2014 7:19:30 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: ebb tide
Addressing the Vatican court primarily responsible for hearing requests for marriage annulments, Pope Francis said judges on church tribunals should show “imperturbable and impartial balance” as well as the “delicacy and humanity proper to a pastor of souls.” The Pope made his remarks today to officials of the Roman Rota at a meeting to inaugurate the tribunal’s judicial year. “You are essentially pastors,” he told the officials. “As you carry out your judicial work, do not forget that you are pastors. Behind every file, every position, every case, there are persons who wait for justice.”

I'm guessing that someone believed there was a question that needed addressing.

4 posted on 01/24/2014 7:23:21 PM PST by Alex Murphy ("the defacto Leader of the FR Calvinist Protestant Brigades")
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To: Da Coyote

why is there a “fee” of several thousands for the annullment..Never understood that one.


5 posted on 01/24/2014 7:23:56 PM PST by Recovering Ex-hippie
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To: Alex Murphy; piusv; BlatherNaut

Yes, and it was the disobedient German bishops who did so. And the pope is playing right into their hands. I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s already been rehearsed between the mix of them.


6 posted on 01/24/2014 7:28:33 PM PST by ebb tide
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To: ebb tide

“pastoral”


7 posted on 01/24/2014 7:31:18 PM PST by GeronL (Vote for Conservatives not for Republicans!)
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To: Recovering Ex-hippie

Where are you getting that false information?


8 posted on 01/24/2014 7:32:10 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Recovering Ex-hippie

I learned a lot about annulments in this book——very interesting.

“Shattered Faith”

Sheila Rauch Kennedy

.


9 posted on 01/24/2014 7:34:56 PM PST by Mears
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To: Mears

I learned a lot about annulments in this book——very interesting.

“Shattered Faith”

Sheila Rauch Kennedy


You probably know that her annulment was ultimately overturned.


10 posted on 01/24/2014 7:39:11 PM PST by Dr. Sivana (The only thing that can save us is if Kerry wins the Nobel prize and leaves us alone.--Moshe Yaalon)
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To: ebb tide

Hey the Kennedy clan seems to be able to get them with no problem


11 posted on 01/24/2014 7:47:33 PM PST by Nifster
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To: Salvation

Now there’s a bit of dogma for you.... so Nancy Pelosi gets a pass because she was baptized....never mind that she doesn’t believe anything the church teaches.

Why don’t you think about it....


12 posted on 01/24/2014 7:49:07 PM PST by Nifster
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To: ebb tide
And here's the dog whistle:

In his speech to the Rota, the Pope said a judge on a Church tribunal must sympathise with the “mentality and legitimate aspirations” of the community he serves, and thus render “justice that is not legalistic and abstract, but appropriate to the needs of concrete reality.”

13 posted on 01/24/2014 7:52:21 PM PST by BlatherNaut
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To: Dr. Sivana

It was not HER annulment.... the annulment was requested by JOE KENNEDY. Yes it was initially granted but it was Sheila’s book that brought pressure to have it over turned


14 posted on 01/24/2014 7:52:34 PM PST by Nifster
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To: Nifster

They sure do. And Francis has just appointed the latest Kennedy apologist, Cardinal O’Malley, to his Gang o’ Eight.

It’s all coming together, ever since the pre-arranged agreements during the papal conclave. “You scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours”.


15 posted on 01/24/2014 7:53:52 PM PST by ebb tide
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To: Nifster

Nancy is making her own bed. She will have to lie in it one day.


16 posted on 01/24/2014 7:54:21 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Nifster

“But he that knew not, and did things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. And unto whomsoever much is given, of him much shall be required: and to whom they have committed much, of him they will demand the more.”

Luke 12:48


17 posted on 01/24/2014 7:59:22 PM PST by BlatherNaut
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To: ebb tide

bookmark


18 posted on 01/24/2014 8:00:30 PM PST by GOP Poet
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To: BlatherNaut

That is that frightening. Let’s just toss out the Ten Commandments then. Let’s toss out the Sacrament of Marriage.


19 posted on 01/24/2014 8:03:15 PM PST by ebb tide
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To: Nifster
It was not HER annulment

I did not mean imply that she sought it. I only used the term "her annulment" because if the bond is declared null, it applies to both parties. So yes, while it was declared an annulment, it was "her annulment" as well as his. Same thing for civil divorce.
20 posted on 01/24/2014 8:07:42 PM PST by Dr. Sivana (The only thing that can save us is if Kerry wins the Nobel prize and leaves us alone.--Moshe Yaalon)
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To: ebb tide

All it takes is a little grease on the right ecclesiastical palm.


21 posted on 01/24/2014 8:36:15 PM PST by E. Pluribus Unum (“Education is a weapon whose effects depend on who holds it and at whom it is aimed.”— Joseph Sta)
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To: Salvation

From a physician I know whomI trust.


22 posted on 01/24/2014 8:54:42 PM PST by Recovering Ex-hippie
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To: Dr. Sivana

I read that too.


23 posted on 01/24/2014 8:55:28 PM PST by Recovering Ex-hippie
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To: Salvation; Recovering Ex-hippie

Looks like you can get them cheaper in Arlington:

“The processing of a formal case generally generates costs of approximately $1200. It is expected that the person seeking an annulment will assist the Tribunal in partially meeting its administrative costs through a fee of $750.”
http://www.arlingtondiocese.org/tribunal/faq.aspx#Cost

Providence the base fee is $500. New York is $1000.

And, of course, if it goes to the Vatican, “ where the amount of the fee is determined.” per New York.

Of course, that doesn’t include the canon lawyers.

If there isn’t one out there, there is probably a market for a website listing the various prices with reviews as to how easy (or hard) it is in each jurisdiction.


24 posted on 01/24/2014 9:05:14 PM PST by PAR35
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To: PAR35

If a marriage is invalid it is invalid.
Period.
It does not matter if the Church has a formal hearing on the matter or not, it is still not valid.
Good Catholics should be concerned about remarriage if “God has joined” them in a previous marriage.
However, if the previous marriage was not valid it really is not the business of ANYONE but the two involved in that marriage. And the Church, TOO, of course, if either member of that invalid marriage wishes to confirm their own views.

Those of you who obsess over this issue are in violation of a Commandment yourselves, if you pass judgment on others over matters you know nothing about. You do not know the hearts or the mental states of those involved.


25 posted on 01/24/2014 9:14:55 PM PST by Kansas58
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To: Recovering Ex-hippie; Da Coyote

I never understood the whole concept....

You were married, but not really because:

1) they lied about something
2) they weren’t really Catholic
3) you weren’t really Catholic
4) whoever married you didn’t realize there was a Catholic “glitch”
5) You changed your mind, but have sufficient funds to assuage
your foolishness.

So, then, it never really happened and all is cool and you don’t have to kill anyone now.


26 posted on 01/24/2014 9:26:26 PM PST by One Name (Ultimately, the TRUTH is a razor's edge and no man can sit astride it.)
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To: Kansas58
It does not matter if the Church has a formal hearing on the matter or not, it is still not valid.

So, who does determine the validity of a marriage?

27 posted on 01/24/2014 9:40:22 PM PST by ebb tide
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To: Kansas58
However, if the previous marriage was not valid it really is not the business of ANYONE but the two involved in that marriage.

It depends if it was void ab initio or merely voidable. If it wasn't void from the outset, then there are civil as well as ecclesiastical implications to the marital state.

Those of you who obsess over this issue are in violation of a Commandment yourselves, if you pass judgment on others

Well, I haven't checked in on this thread in a while, but I didn't see any of that going on when I was last here. But as a matter of curiosity, what commandment are you referring to?

You do not know the hearts or the mental states of those involved.

No, and it isn't my concern. That's why the validity of the dissolution of the marriage should be in the hands of the Presbuteros.

28 posted on 01/24/2014 9:57:59 PM PST by PAR35
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To: Recovering Ex-hippie

The Archdiocese of Los Angeles charges something like $500.00, and the fee is reduced upon request in cases of financial hardship.


29 posted on 01/24/2014 10:38:46 PM PST by married21 ( As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.)
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To: ebb tide


So, who does determine the validity of a marriage?”

Simple, it has to be free and open and a contract entered into by mature, consenting people with no outside pressures or motives.

God must be involved.

The couple often knows that God did NOT join them. That is a matter of conscience and the formal Tribunals even place great weight on personal conscience decisions about validity.


30 posted on 01/24/2014 10:42:06 PM PST by Kansas58
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To: PAR35

As to canon lawyers, you do not need one in the archdiocese of Los Angeles. An “advocate” is appointed for the petitioner and the respondent, without extra charge. You could hire somebody else, I guess, but why? The advocates in the Marriage Tribunal office are by far the most familiar with what facts and arguments are successful.


31 posted on 01/24/2014 10:43:25 PM PST by married21 ( As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.)
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To: PAR35

Well, I haven’t checked in on this thread in a while, but I didn’t see any of that going on when I was last here. But as a matter of curiosity, what commandment are you referring to? “

“Thou shall not bear false witness”


32 posted on 01/24/2014 10:44:03 PM PST by Kansas58
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To: Kansas58
Simple, it has to be free and open and a contract entered into by mature, consenting people with no outside pressures or motives.

Who witnesses said contract? And who can void said contract?

What you're stating reminds me of free love at Woodstock.

By the way, the "maturity" cop-out has now become a very popular reason many annulments are granted, even if the couples were in their 30's when they got married.

33 posted on 01/24/2014 10:54:52 PM PST by ebb tide
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To: married21
The advocates in the Marriage Tribunal office are by far the most familiar with what facts and arguments are successful.

What is considered "successful"? The validation of the sacrament of marriage or an annulment of that marriage?

34 posted on 01/24/2014 10:59:28 PM PST by ebb tide
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To: ebb tide

Well, the petitioner would consider it successful if the annulment is granted. Also, please note that there is a pre-screening done at the parish level with the pastor. A lot of people who would have filed a petition are told that they would not have adequate grounds for annulment and the petition never gets submitted.

It reminds me of the district attorney’s office. While it is true that a suspect is innocent until proven guilty, a DA does not usually waste time and money on a weak case with little chance of obtaining a conviction, as resources are scarce.

I would also note that until pastors start taking the bull by the horns and properly preparing couples for marriage, a lot of mercy is going to be needed in granting annulments. If a pastor looks the other way as couples cohabit and live like people who have no religion, you can expect that there will be many ceremonies at which God is not really invited, despite the trappings of religiosity. I hope that what Pope Francis is saying is that pastors are going to be getting a lot more picky and making couples understand the commitment they are making and having them practice self-sacrifice and delayed gratification before they take the plunge.


35 posted on 01/24/2014 11:30:52 PM PST by married21 ( As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.)
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To: Recovering Ex-hippie

“why is there a “fee” of several thousands for the annullment..Never understood that one.”


You think money just grows on trees in heaven? Stuff costs money. Think of the administrative costs, the fee for the attorney Saint who acts as the middle-man between the Catholic church on Earth and one of the lower level bureaucrats in heaven. And the angels are unionized, you know.


36 posted on 01/25/2014 2:04:13 AM PST by Greetings_Puny_Humans (I mostly come out at night... mostly.)
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To: ebb tide

Annulment = Church sanctioned divorce.


37 posted on 01/25/2014 5:19:46 AM PST by metmom (...fixing our eyes on Jesus, the Author and Perfecter of our faith....)
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To: ebb tide

How much are your chances of getting an annulment increased if you have a well-connected lawyer?


38 posted on 01/25/2014 5:59:49 AM PST by ardara
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To: ebb tide
So it boils down to the fact that you want virtually no annulments, ever?
Sounds like it is YOU that does not want to study or understand the issues or Church teaching.
Face it: The radical anti-divorce and remarriage crowd needs their own separate Church as that view is not really “Catholic”.
39 posted on 01/25/2014 6:05:44 AM PST by Kansas58
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To: ebb tide
Oh poppycock. Have you ever gone through the Annulment process? Do you know what the process is or what it is about?

Right now, a large majority of those who apply for an annulment, get them. But, the number of people who apply for annulments is pretty darn low. And the process isn't a quick nor easy one.

Pope Francis is absolutely right it is a balance between a legal and pastoral approach. To continue to dismiss the HUGE population of divorced Catholics because self-righteous pricks think all divorces were just easy ways to get out is NOT Catholic nor Christian.

40 posted on 01/25/2014 6:07:01 AM PST by Solson (The Voters stole the election! And the establishment wants it back.)
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To: BlatherNaut

Yeah, that doesn’t sound good, but for some reason, with this topic, I’m withholding judgment. Things aren’t clear o where this is headed, but it won’t be long before we know exactly what is going to happen. I certainly won’t be surprised if/when Francis makes huge changes that go against Traditional Catholic teaching. I’ll be more surprised if he doesn’t.


41 posted on 01/25/2014 7:04:46 AM PST by piusv
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To: Kansas58

I’m still not sure who you are defending here - the Kennedys, the corrupt bishop who wrongfully granted the annulment, or someone else.

Or are you just carrying around a lot of guilt from a personal situation? If so, you should seek help.

Opposition to easy dissolution of marriage is not a Catholic thing, it is a Christian thing. The Westminster Confession of Faith is about as far from Rome as you can get, and it clearly sets out the Biblical standard:

“Although the corruption of man be such as is apt to study arguments unduly to put asunder those whom God has joined together in marriage: yet, nothing but adultery, or such wilful desertion as can no way be remedied by the Church, or civil magistrate, is cause sufficient of dissolving the bond of marriage: wherein, a public and orderly course of proceeding is to be observed; and the persons concerned in it not left to their own wills, and discretion, in their own case.”

If you can be clear as to who you think I’ve wrongly accused (the Pope? the German bishops?) perhaps we can have a more focused discussion.


42 posted on 01/25/2014 7:51:44 AM PST by PAR35
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To: married21

You technically don’t need a lawyer for a civil divorce, either, but I wouldn’t recommend going into the process without one.

It is my understanding that it is easier to get an annulment from some bishops than it is from others (although I would welcome statistics one way or the other on this subject), so the extrinsic costs are likely to vary.


43 posted on 01/25/2014 8:05:10 AM PST by PAR35
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To: PAR35

I only know about Los Angeles, but it is extremely rare there for somebody to hire an outside canon lawyer— like one case a year. Most applicants are poor or middle class. And it looks to me like a majority of applicants are women. This is troubling. It means that when men divorce they are walking away from the church entirely. It’s the women who want to keep attending mass.


44 posted on 01/25/2014 8:51:04 AM PST by married21 ( As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.)
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To: Da Coyote
IIRC, they annulled Ted's marriage on the grounds of fraud, namely, that he did not intend a lifelong and exclusively faithful marriage, and therefore his vow was just empty lying words, that is, a fraud. Fraud cannot be a part of a sacramental covenant.

You disagree?

45 posted on 01/25/2014 10:34:26 AM PST by Mrs. Don-o (What does the LORD require of you, but to act justly, to love tenderly, to walk humbly with your God)
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To: Recovering Ex-hippie; Da Coyote
In his book Annulments and the Catholic Church, canon lawyer Edward Peters states, "In the U.S. most tribunals charge anywhere from $200 to $1,000 for adjudicating a standard nullity case… These fees are typically payable over time, and there are means for having fees reduced or eliminated in cases of financial hardship (canon 1464)” (p. 7-8).

He goes on to explain that the expenses paid out of this fee are the cost of retrieval and printing of documents, the expense of personally locating and interviewing the respondent and witnesses, meetings with canon lawyers from both sides, esp. if the annulment is contested.

On the other hand, if the attempted marriage was indisputably null from the documents alone (e.g. proof that one of the parties was already validly married to somebody else and so the attempted marriage was actually bigamy), the petitioner would have an expedited and much less expensive process.

'Documentary cases' are handled very rapidly and for a much smaller fee, $25 or less being common.”

Do you understand? I hope this was helpful.

46 posted on 01/25/2014 10:47:11 AM PST by Mrs. Don-o (What does the LORD require of you, but to act justly, to love tenderly, to walk humbly with your God)
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To: Da Coyote
Oh, and BTW that annulment was overturned upon appeal. Sheila K. eveidently testified that Ted could very well have been sincere and faithful "at that time," which means he made an honest --- and therefore binding --- vow.

I sure wouldn't want to be the canonical judge on that case, having to decide on what Ted K.'s intent was when he married. But the first Tribunal thought he was lying, which would be my hunch as well, considering his subsequent behavior.

47 posted on 01/25/2014 10:51:18 AM PST by Mrs. Don-o (What does the LORD require of you, but to act justly, to love tenderly, to walk humbly with your God)
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To: E. Pluribus Unum

That’s nothing but slander. Slander is wrong.


48 posted on 01/25/2014 10:52:06 AM PST by Mrs. Don-o (What does the LORD require of you, but to act justly, to love tenderly, to walk humbly with your God)
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To: One Name

Do you think a lasting sacramental bond can be built upon a fraud?


49 posted on 01/25/2014 10:53:20 AM PST by Mrs. Don-o (What does the LORD require of you, but to act justly, to love tenderly, to walk humbly with your God)
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To: metmom

Actually, your information is not correct. Annulment has no necessary connection with divorce. A couple can be divorced (civil) without annulment (church); they can even be annulled (church) without divorce (civil). The two have no necessary equivalence.


50 posted on 01/25/2014 10:57:38 AM PST by Mrs. Don-o (What does the LORD require of you, but to act justly, to love tenderly, to walk humbly with your God)
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