Deep thoughts on marriage...

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-15-2004
Deep thoughts on marriage...
2
Wed, 06-30-2004 - 1:50am
I was wondering, if two people marry religiously but find it is not a true marriage relationship are they really married in the eyes of God? If only God knows if the marriage was right between the two people then what is the point of having such and intimate ceremony in front of a whole church of people, and how does a formal ceremony guarantee the man and woman are truly married.

If a person divorces civilly and finds another mate which is unacceptable in the church, how is it really possible the church can determine that the new relationship isn't a true relationship in the eyes of God. It's very confusing to me to comprehend the formal wedding equating into what makes a marriage true. Can't a true marriage only be determined after a set amount of time proves out the people have a true committment to God and each other?

My spouse and are are catholic and have been married 10 years. My spouse was married before in the catholic church and so we are living in sin according to the church. I am not an educated catholic, just a cradle catholic trying to come back to my faith as of late. I am having a hard time wrapping my mind around the fact my spouses ex who was abusive, adultering, and short lived (3yrs) could possibly be construed as his soul-mate in the eyes of God, and me (10yrs) and having a very healthy loving bond to my spouse could be construed as forbidden blastfomous relationship. I mean, if God only knows these things then why do we even go through the formality of the service when we can't guarantee another humans actions thus their committment to marriage? I have been told for my spouse to get an annulment. But if the marriage is invalid in the eyes of God then what really is the formality of proving it to a couple of people outside the marriage to agree and process paperwork on it. I mean if God knows than why is it necessary and what impact does it make? Do these tribunal people and priest do a special intervention on our behalf to God, some kind of intervention we can't do on our own because we aren't up on the same level as a priest? I am trying to undersand the faith. I haven't talked to a priest about it because I am afraid my question will offend him. I was just wondering if I was thinking about this too deeply and there is a simple explaination for it all.

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Wed, 06-30-2004 - 8:28am
Marriage is a public act. The Marriage is recorded in the public record of the Church, you present yourself in public as husband and wife. Marriage therefore cannot be considered a private act. For the Christian Marriage is a permanent act. Therefore if someone challenges the validity of a public marriage then the decision as to that validity must also be recorded in the public record of the Church. The same applies to civil law a person married under civil law and recorded in the courthouse cannot just up and say we are no longer married, we are divorced. No they must first follow a process prescribed by law and record the divorce in the public record of the courthouse.
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-27-2003
Wed, 06-30-2004 - 10:01am
Well, you've come to the right place. This board has a lot of very knowledgeable people about the Catholic faith. You will get a lot of answers here. I do know from experiencing 3 of my sisters divorces how you feel. I don't know personally,(I'm a cradle Catholic married almost 18 years.) But I've been through it with my sisters.

The Catholic church sees marriage as a sacrament. Not just a legal union. So, when you make those vows in the church they are suppose to be forever. In some cases, there are reasons when you marry, at the time the vows are said, that the marriage wasn't really sacramental. In that case you can get an annulment. Has your dh looked into an annulment? If not that is the first thing you should do. And don't be afraid to go talk to your priest. Thats what they are there for.

Secondly, I would suggest this fall going to your church's RCIA classes. Just to renew your understanding of the Catholic faith. I have been through RCIA a couple times as a sponsor and always end up learning alot more than I ever expected. It also caused me to meet more people and get more involved in the church.

I'm not an expert on all of this but there are alot of people on this board who are. You'll get some good answers and advice. The fact that you are curious about this and are "trying to come back to your faith" tells me that someone is trying to tell you something. Listen with an open heart and you'll get what you need. God bless.

Carmen