Skip to comments.Robertson: Divorce Your Wife With Alzheimer's
Posted on 09/15/2011 11:20:05 AM PDT by Sopater
Religious broadcaster Pat Robertson told his "700 Club" viewers that divorcing a spouse with Alzheimer's is justifiable because the disease is "a kind of death."
During the portion of the show where the one-time Republican presidential candidate takes questions from viewers, Robertson was asked what advice a man should give to a friend who began seeing another woman after his wife started suffering from the incurable neurological disorder.
"I know it sounds cruel, but if he's going to do something, he should divorce her and start all over again, but make sure she has custodial care and somebody looking after her," Robertson said.
The chairman of the Christian Broadcasting Network, which airs the "700 Club," said he wouldn't "put a guilt trip" on anyone who divorces a spouse who suffers from the illness, but added, "Get some ethicist besides me to give you the answer."
Most Christian denominations at least discourage divorce, citing Jesus' words in the Gospel of Mark that equate divorce and remarriage with adultery.
Terry Meeuwsen, Robertson's co-host, asked him about couples' marriage vows to take care of each other "for better or for worse" and "in sickness and in health."
"If you respect that vow, you say `til death do us part,'" Robertson said during the Tuesday broadcast. "This is a kind of death."
A network spokesman said Wednesday that Robertson had no further statement.
Divorce is uncommon among couples where one partner is suffering from Alzheimer's, said Beth Kallmyer, director of constituent services for the Alzheimer's Association, which provides resources to sufferers and their families.
"We don't hear a lot of people saying `I'm going to get divorced,'" she told The Associated Press. "Families typically respond the way they do to any other fatal disease."
The stress can be significant in marriages though, Kallmyer said, because it results in the gradual loss of a person's mental faculties.
"The caregiving can be really stressful on a couple of levels," she said. "There's the physical level. There's also the emotional level of feeling like you're losing that person you love."
As a result, she said, it's important for couples to make decisions about care together in the early stages of the illness, when its effects aren't as prominent. (AP)
I am not arguing with you. The marriage contract can be impeded by Ecclesiastical or natural law. The condition of Alzheimers is a natural occurance, one of natural law, which naturally can impede a contract. Right? Annulments and dissolution of the marriage contract do occur all the time for these natural reasons that are quite apart from human fault to which Christ addresses his warning against human fault. Right?
You are equating Christianity with Islam.
A person who faithfully follows God’s Word is the antithesis of the Taliban, for heaven’s sake.
Think before you write.
I'm expecting him to show up on late night TV, face all up in the camera, smoking a cigar, shouting out orders to call in with 5000 dollar donations.
How un-Christian, Pat. Obviously your thinking has become quite confused. Perhaps your wife should get a divorce???
Grounds for annullment must exist before the purported marriage was “contracted.” Do you really not understand this?
You cannot, 40 years after the marriage vows, say that a condition that began years after those vows, annuls the marriage.
I can’t quote the Bible, but I remember my wedding vows. In sickness and in health.
No, I'm equating nonsporting's perverted view of Christianity with Islam.
Annulment does not end a marriage. It is not an analogue to divorce. Robertson was speaking of divorce, which, in his view, does end a marriage and permit remarriage. Annulment declares no sacramental marriage ever existed.
Alzheimers cannot be a basis for annulment unless someone had advanced Alzheimers at the time of marriage. This is next to impossible at normal ages of marriage. If a couple in their 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s tried to marry and one of them was in advanced Alzheimers, then they should never have been issued a license by the state nor should family or clergy have let the “marriage” happen. If undiagnosed Alzheimers existed in a, say, 70-year-old at the time of the marriage, then it wouold have to be demonstrated that he or she did not have sufficient sound mind to make a promise. But if that’s NOT what Robertson was talking about. He was talking about someone who married sound of mind and long years later gradually reached the point of advanced Alzheimers.
There is no analogy between what Robertson said and Catholic teaching on annulment. None. Nada. Zero. Zilch.
From a biblical perspective, a marriage is not a contract, but a covenant.
Things that happen after the marriage contract do not come into the equation, only that which occurred before. That’s why Catholics are supposed to talk with a priest before they get married, to winkle out anything which might impede a valid vow, such as a desire to contracept, or intending an “open” marriage, or yes, a current diagnosis of Alzheimer’s.
Right. “Porneia” is a generic term indicating immoral sexual activity. Marriage is a covenant. Porneia breaks the covenant. (Alzheimer’s does not.)
Religious broadcaster Pat Robertson told his “700 Club” viewers that divorcing a spouse with Alzheimer’s is justifiable because the disease is “a kind of death.”
So does he next take it to euthanasia?
how about a newly married 20 year old whose spouse has a stroke or gets into an accident and is going to be in a vegetative coma for the next 50 years?
these artificial life support situations would have never accured in biblical times
McCain and Gingrich are waiting with bated breath.... :)
How terrible, you’re loved one gets sick so go out and found a new husband or wife, I’m ashamed of him for saying that.