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Ministers of Matrimony

Posted By: Filipe YTOL

Ministers of Matrimony - 02/13/08 12:23 PM

Hello all,
Recently in a discussion about matrimony somebody mentioned that in the Western Church the bride and groom are the ministers of the sacrament, but in the Eastern Churches it is the priest. As you would expect, this caused some surprise and confusion to most of those present. At the time, one of the women in charge interrupted and explained that in the Eastern Liturgy the couple were still ministers, but that the Priest was as well.
I didn't say anything at the time, because we were a bit off topic, but I am quite sure this is incorrect, and I would like to privately explain the issue to her.
Am I correct in assuming that the sole minister is the priest, in an Eastern wedding?
Posted By: Our Lady's slave

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/13/08 12:51 PM

I personally think you are correct Filipe smile

In the Latin Church as you state that the couple are Ministers of the Sacrament - this is why they can be married by either a Deacon or a Priest.

As you state, in the East the couple are married by a priest , it is NOT possible for an Eastern Deacon to marry them - this is where there can be problems with an Latin Catholic marrying an Eastern Catholic in a Latin Catholic Church - the priest has to be there for the sacrament to be conferred upon the couple.

stick to your guns smile
Posted By: father michael

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/13/08 01:13 PM

From my understanding, all the Holy Mysteries in the East are received passively. Re: marriage, there is a difference between East and West in that the actual crowning and blessing received from the priest are necessary in the East.

Did you know that if a Byzantine Catholic gets married in the Latin Church, it MUST be a priest who marries them or it is considered invalid? At least is what I have been informed by a bishop-doctor of canon law....
Posted By: Collin Nunis

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/13/08 01:26 PM

Yes, it true... A priest must be the one who marries them if an Eastern Catholic marries in the Latin Church.
Posted By: theophilus

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/13/08 01:42 PM

The concept of Eastern marriages being ministered by BOTH the priest and the couple is an invention of Latin canon lawyers so that an Eastern marriage will fit into their annulment system. Otherwise it would be impossible to annul an Eastern marriage, which is our Tradition.

We do not believe in a sacramentalized legal contract, "until death do us part". We believe that the priest cooperates with the Holy Spirit to join the couple into one ontological person, not unlike how a priest and the Holy Spirit will transform bread and wine into the Body and Blood -- it is something that cannot really be "undone".
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/13/08 04:48 PM

Originally Posted by theophilus
The concept of Eastern marriages being ministered by BOTH the priest and the couple is an invention of Latin canon lawyers so that an Eastern marriage will fit into their annulment system.


This is ludicrous.

Originally Posted by theophilus
We believe that the priest cooperates with the Holy Spirit to join the couple into one ontological person ...


This violates the integrity of the person -- of the persons of the man and woman -- and I trust it is not Orthodox theology or teaching. The married couple is no more "one ontological person" than is the Trinity.

Dn. Anthony
Posted By: Fr Serge Keleher

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/13/08 05:47 PM

There was a mildly amusing case several decades ago in an Eparchy in the USA which shall here remain nameless. The Bishop attempted to permit a deacon to marry the couple, and the ceremony was held. This reached the ears of Rome, which stepped on the bishop and required that the ceremony be repeated, this time by a priest.

Fr. Serge
Posted By: theophilus

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/13/08 06:27 PM

Fr. Deacon Anthony,

How is my statement ludicrous? Consent or any action of the couple is not a requirement for marriage. The mystery is the action of the priest and the Holy Spirit given to the couple. How could the concept of the couple being a "minister of the sacrament" be anything other than a Latinization?

Of course marriage violates the "integrity of the persons of the man and woman"! You no longer have the freedom to do whatever you want without "your other half". The couple is joined together as one. This is not a contract or vow, but an eternal ontological reality. Yes, I mean eternal -- this mystery does not end at death. Thus divorce or annulment is not possible. An ecclesiastical divorce or second marriage is only a temporary situation that ends at death (still married to your first and only "real" spouse)
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/13/08 08:25 PM

Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by theophilus
The concept of Eastern marriages being ministered by BOTH the priest and the couple is an invention of Latin canon lawyers so that an Eastern marriage will fit into their annulment system.


This is ludicrous.

Originally Posted by theophilus
We believe that the priest cooperates with the Holy Spirit to join the couple into one ontological person ...


This violates the integrity of the person -- of the persons of the man and woman -- and I trust it is not Orthodox theology or teaching. The married couple is no more "one ontological person" than is the Trinity.


Originally Posted by theophilus
Fr. Deacon Anthony,

How is my statement ludicrous? Consent or any action of the couple is not a requirement for marriage. The mystery is the action of the priest and the Holy Spirit given to the couple. How could the concept of the couple being a "minister of the sacrament" be anything other than a Latinization?


Theophilus and all,

Perhaps we're talking past one another. Latinizations are ok for the Latins but not for us. I understand what is intended by "Consent or any action of the couple is not a requirement for marriage" but consent is a necessary prior condition, it is just not sufficient in the East: the blessing of the priest is required.

What I challenge though is the assertion that "Latin canon lawyers" invented the "concept of Eastern marriages being ministered by BOTH the priest and the couple ... so that an Eastern marriage will fit into their annulment system." But if you have facts to the contrary I'm willing to listen and learn.

Originally Posted by theophilus
Of course marriage violates the "integrity of the persons of the man and woman"! You no longer have the freedom to do whatever you want without "your other half". The couple is joined together as one. This is not a contract or vow, but an eternal ontological reality. Yes, I mean eternal -- this mystery does not end at death. Thus divorce or annulment is not possible. An ecclesiastical divorce or second marriage is only a temporary situation that ends at death (still married to your first and only "real" spouse)


Marriage produces a new relationship but a proper relationship does not violate the integrity of persons, a bad one does in the colloquial sense, neither does in the ontological sense. The ontological integrity of the concept of person -- person understood in the theological sense -- is "violated," i.e. misrepresented, by the loss of uniqueness and identity resulting if it were the case that marriage functioned "to join the couple into one ontological person." The mysteries that are ontological in effect are associated with the sense of sphragis (seal) or character (indelible mark) and are therefore not repeatable. These are Baptism, Chrismation (Confirmation) and definitely in Catholic, possibly in Orthodox theology, Holy Orders. Marriage being repeatable is not one of them.

Theologies based on the concept of person, such as that of Met. John Zizioulas, identify our being made in the image and likeness of God as referring specifically to the mutual application of the concept of person. I am a person, my wife is a person, we become one, one flesh, in marriage but we do not say we become one person any more than we would say the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are one person in the Trinity.

Dn. Anthony
Posted By: MrsMW

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/13/08 08:43 PM

Every once in awhile Rome comes in handy. smile
Posted By: Penthaetria

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/14/08 01:41 AM

Originally Posted by MrsMW
Every once in awhile Rome comes in handy. smile
Especially as a tourist destination -- but I sure wouldn't want to live there -- literally or theologically! grin
Posted By: Apotheoun

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/14/08 10:21 AM

Marriage iconically mirrors the union of Christ and His Church, i.e., the salvific union of Head and Body as one mystical person stretching throughout time; and so it is true that husband and wife, i.e., head and body in marital union, through the mystery of crowning form one person, which means that their union is ontological and not merely intentional. Nevertheless, marital union does not involve the destruction of the hypostatic distinctiveness of the spouses, just as the hypostatic distinctiveness of Christ and his Body (i.e., all the many members within His Church) is not destroyed by the energetic union brought about through the incarnation of the eternal Logos and the sacramental mysteries that extend it by applying its deifying power throughout human history. Thus, I have no qualms in saying that the mystery of crowning does involve the creation (for lack of a better term) of a new ontological hypostatic reality through the union of the spouses, which iconically signifies and manifests the eschatological union of Christ and His Body the Church, i.e. the Whole Christ, and that this union does mark (or seal) the spouses, even though it is repeatable.

P.S. - Several Orthodox priests have told me that the mystery of chrismation is repeatable.
Posted By: Michael_Thoma

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/14/08 09:00 PM

Todd,

Are you saying that the Sacramental union of spouses creates a ontological miaphysis within the marriage?
Posted By: May

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/14/08 11:26 PM

Originally Posted by father michael
Did you know that if a Byzantine Catholic gets married in the Latin Church, it MUST be a priest who marries them or it is considered invalid? At least is what I have been informed by a bishop-doctor of canon law....


Never knew this. It makes sense if a, say, Ukrainian Catholic is being married to a non-Catholic in a Roman Catholic parish with an RC cleric and using the RC ritual (this happens quite often in fact in these parts where most UCs attend RC churches). But, what if the Eastern-Byzantine Catholic is being married to a Roman Catholic in the Roman Catholic Church, does the need for a priest still persist? Is it always possible to take into account both liturgical and canonical traditions and disciplines at the same time?

Posted By: May

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/14/08 11:31 PM

Originally Posted by Apotheoun
... iconically mirrors ...


An interesting phrasing. It would seem to me that icons and mirrors are quite different. If marriage merely mirrors the relationship of Christ and the Church then marriage is changeable as our 'vision' of the relatioship between Chrsit and the Church changes. But if marriage is an icon of the relationship of Christ and the Church then marriage our vision is vision (understanding) is not important ... the reality of the relationship that is re-presented in the icon of marriage is what is vital.

Posted By: Fr Serge Keleher

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/14/08 11:37 PM

Actually an icon is a window, rather than a mirror. One does not sing "we magnify thee" to oneself!

Fr. Serge
Posted By: Apotheoun

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/15/08 01:26 AM

Originally Posted by May
Originally Posted by Apotheoun
... iconically mirrors ...


An interesting phrasing. It would seem to me that icons and mirrors are quite different. If marriage merely mirrors the relationship of Christ and the Church then marriage is changeable as our 'vision' of the relatioship between Chrsit and the Church changes. But if marriage is an icon of the relationship of Christ and the Church then marriage our vision is vision (understanding) is not important ... the reality of the relationship that is re-presented in the icon of marriage is what is vital.


The image does not change because the relationship that exists between Christ and the Church is an objective reality, and so it is not based upon any individual's opinion, but is a dogmatic truth revealed to the Church in Christ and made manifest in scripture and tradition.
Posted By: Apotheoun

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/15/08 01:29 AM

Originally Posted by Serge Keleher
Actually an icon is a window, rather than a mirror. One does not sing "we magnify thee" to oneself!

Fr. Serge

I believe that an icon is both a window and a mirror, because we see the saints glorified in the image, while also seeing ourselves reflected in it as we will be in the eschaton, permeated with divine energy.
Posted By: Alice

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/15/08 01:32 AM

Originally Posted by Serge Keleher
Actually an icon is a window, rather than a mirror. One does not sing "we magnify thee" to oneself!

Fr. Serge


Thanks for the chuckle, Father Serge! smile

Quote
I believe that an icon is both a window and a mirror, because we see the saints glorified in the image, while also seeing ourselves reflected in it as we will be in the eschaton, permeated with divine energy .


Beautifully said, my 'friend'! wink

Posted By: Prester John

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/15/08 03:05 AM

Hmmm

I think an icon is neither a window nor a mirror. One could say the same about any image, truthfully.

An icon is, properly, theology. There is nothing spiritual 'in' the wood/paper/mosaic tile. The message it delivers can reflect us or reveal things to us, but ultimately, an icon is a message.

And the message is Christ.

Just my two cents.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/15/08 04:13 AM

Originally Posted by Michael_Thoma
Todd,

Are you saying that the Sacramental union of spouses creates a ontological miaphysis within the marriage?


Well, are you?
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/15/08 04:55 AM

Originally Posted by Apotheoun
... and that this union does mark (or seal) the spouses, even though it is repeatable.


Who -- Church, theologian, etc. -- holds this view, specifically that marriage bestows a seal (sphragis) and is repeatable?

Dn. Anthony
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/22/08 04:15 PM

Originally Posted by Apotheoun
... it is true that husband and wife, i.e., head and body in marital union, through the mystery of crowning form one person ... a new ontological hypostatic reality through the union of the spouses...


Two persons become one person? "Unthinkable!" "Unheard-of!" Has anyone else (preferably orthodox) used person in this way, or does it spring forth anew here?

Dn. Anthony
Posted By: Grace7

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/25/08 09:56 PM

I'm not sure if this is the best place to post this, but I'm wondering if anyone on the forum can help me with a marriage question.

We are Byzantine Catholics who have a daughter who is engaged to an Orthodox man. Unfortunately, her fiance is a convert from evangelicalism, and has a lot of anti-Catholic baggage. He has even questioned our daughter attending Divine Liturgy with us since we are "protestants" and it is a "protestant church." Under his influence, our daughter has been leaning towards the Orthodox Church, but was planning on getting the necessary permission from our bishop to marry her fiance in the Orthodox Church before possibly becoming Orthodox. She has now decided to become Orthodox before the wedding, and so we aren't sure what the ramifications of her decision will be on the validity of her marriage.

Obviously if she had waited to become Orthodox, received permission from the bishop, and had our priest present, there would have been no problems with the marriage. But if she is leaving the Catholic Church, joining the Orthodox Church, and getting married without the approval of her Catholic bishop, how will her marriage be viewed by the Catholic Church. I am sure it will be valid in the Orthodox Church, but as her parents and as Byzantine Catholics, it is important to us that her marriage is valid in the Catholic Church as well. My understanding is that in the case of a Catholic getting married in a protestant church without permission from the bishop, the marriage is not considered valid. However, the Orthodox Church has valid sacraments and can't be considered a protestant church, so how would the Catholic Church view this marriage? Is there anything in Canon Law that addresses this question? The difficult thing for us is that as much as we want to be supportive of our daughter, if the marriage is not considered valid in the Catholic Church, we can not in good conscience attend.

Thanks for any help in this matter.

Posted By: Halia12

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/26/08 12:03 AM

Dear Grace 7,
I am sure all of us here feel for you. Speaking as an Orthodox I am sorry the fiance is appearing to be so judgemental towards your family. I am sure others present will be able to provide you with more practical ifo than I can.
To start you off here is this joint Catholic-Orthodox statement:
Quote
A Pastoral Statement on Orthodox/Roman Catholic Marriages - Joint Committee of Orthodox and Catholic Bishops, 1990
Introduction

A growing trust and a spirit of cooperation have developed between the Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church during the last twenty-five years, not only in the United States but also in other parts of the world. Under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, our Churches have been led to recognize more profoundly the need to manifest our unity in Christ and to pray for healing the wounds of centuries-old estrangement.

As bishops of these two churches, we hail this progress in mutual commitment to Church unity. We recognize that the Orthodox Church has expressed its seriousness in working for unity in the Church of Christ in this century through encyclicals and gestures of reconciliation. The Pan-Orthodox conferences held at Rhodes and preparations underway for convening a Great and Holy Synod are tangible signs of hope. We also recognize that the Roman Catholic Church, especially at the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965), committed itself to the cause of Christian unity and recognized its close ties with the Orthodox Church. The creation of the Vatican Secretariat (now Pontifical Council) for Promoting Christian Unity is one sign of its dedication to restoring visible unity. Both our churches welcomed the establishment in 1975 of the official Joint International Commission for Theological Dialogue. Notwithstanding the difficulties this commission has encountered and no doubt will continue to encounter, we rejoice in the work which it has already accomplished.

In the United States, under the sponsorship of the Standing Conference of Canonical Orthodox Bishops in America (SCOBA) and the National Conference of Catholic Bishops (NCCB), a fruitful series of theological consultations has been continuing since 1965. Twice each year members of the U.S. Orthodox/Roman Catholic Consultation meet to discuss common doctrinal and pastoral concerns of our two churches. Already this Consultation has met forty times and has published thirteen agreed statements on important religious concerns. It has also shared its work with the Joint International Commission for Theological Dialogue.

A Joint Committee of Orthodox and Roman Catholic Bishops was formed in the United States ln 1981 at the suggestion of His Eminence Archbishop Iakovos, Primate of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of North and South America, especially to address common pastoral concerns. Foremost among these concerns was the marriage between members of the Roman Catholic and Orthodox Churches.

In this present statement, we, as members of this joint committee, wish to share a number of conclusions from our recent discussions and to propose recommendations that could be implemented in our churches in this country without delay.

To prepare for this statement we have reflected on earlier texts regarding Christian marriage produced by the U.S. Orthodox/ Roman Catholic Consultation: three agreed statements on (1) Mixed Marriages (May 20, 1970); (2) the Sanctity of Marriage (December 8, 1978); (3) the Spiritual Formation of Children of Marriages between Orthodox and Roman Catholics (October 11, 1980); and (4) a reaction to an agreement concluded in Boston between Cardinal Medeiros and Bishop Antimos (April 8, 1981) on ways of regularizing non-canonical marriages between an Orthodox and Roman Catholic spouse (May 29, 1982). Also submitted to us for comment was a document of the Metropolitan New York/New Jersey Orthodox-Roman Catholic Dialogue, an "Agreed Statement on Orthodox-Roman Catholics Marriages" (January 6, 1986). Our own Joint Committee provided a response to its practical suggestions on March 23, 1989. At our previous meetings in 1988 and 1989, we also consulted scholars of Sacred Scripture regarding New Testament perspectives on the indissolubility of marriage.

Meeting now from October 3 to 5, 1990, in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, we wish to make this joint statement about Christian marriage and to offer recommendations which, if implemented, could assist Roman Catholic and Orthodox couples to fulfill more responsibly the requirements of their churches regarding the marriage ceremony, married life in Christ, and the spiritual formation of children.

The Sacredness of Marriage

At a time when the sacredness of married life is seriously threatened by contrary views and "lifestyles", we wish to reaffirm our common faith in the profound reality of married life in Christ. We regard Christian marriage as a vocation from God in which the liberating effect of divine love, a gift of Holy Spirit, is experienced through human love. This human love expresses itself in permanent commitment to mutual fidelity and support in all aspects of life, spiritual as well as physical. It also expresses itself in the generation of new life, that is, in the procreation and nurturing of children on both the spiritual and physical levels. A primary responsibility of parents is the spiritual formation of their children, a task not limited to assuring church membership and providing for formal religious education but extending to all aspects of Christian living.

We regard Christian marriage as having a social dimension which extends beyond the partners and their relatives. Through marriage, husband and wife assume new roles in the church community. Consequently, just as marriage partners have a responsibility for the building up of the Church, so too the Church community has a responsibility to help each Christian family foster its life of faith. In particular the church community shares in the parents' responsibility for the spiritual formation of children.

The Sacramentality of Marriage

We share a common faith and conviction that, for Christians in both the Orthodox and Roman Catholic Churches, marriage is a sacrament of Jesus Christ. We profess the presence of Christ in the Holy Spirit through the prayers and actions of our wedding liturgies. We express our belief that it is Christ who unites the spouses in a life of mutual love. Hence, in this holy union, both are seen as being called by Christ not only to live and work together, but also to share their Christian loves so that each spouse, under grace and with the aid of the other, may grow in holiness and Christian perfection. According to our shared belief, this relationship between husband and wife has been established and sanctified by the Lord. Marriage, as a sacred vocation, mirrors the union of Christ with the Church (Eph 5:23).

The Gospels record that Jesus affirmed the profound significance of marriage. Christian tradition, building upon the teaching of Jesus, continues to proclaim the sanctity of marriage. It is a fundamental relationship in which man and woman, by total sharing with each other, seek their own growth in holiness and that of their children, and show forth the presence of God's Kingdom. Having God's love poured in their hearts by the Holy Spirit, husband and wife exemplify and reflect in their lives together the mystery of love which unites the three persons of the Holy Trinity. Thus, marriage becomes a dynamic relationship which challenges the spouses to live according to the high standards of divine love.

In the teaching of our churches, a sacramental marriage requires both the mutual consent of the believing Christian partners and God's blessing imparted through the official ministry of the Church. At the present time, there are differences in the ways by which this ministry is exercised in order to fulfill the theological and canonical norms for marriage in our churches. The Orthodox Church, as a rule, accepts as sacramental only those marriages of Christians baptized in the name of the Holy Trinity which are sanctified in the Church's liturgy through the blessing of an Orthodox bishop or priest. The Catholic Church accepts as sacramental those marriages of Christians baptized in the name of the Holy Trinity which are witnessed by a Catholic bishop or priest (or, in more recent discipline, a deacon), but it also envisages some exceptional cases in which, whether by law or by dispensation, Catholics may enter into a sacramental marriage in the absence of a bishop, priest or deacon. There are also differences in our theological explanations of this diversity. As older presentations of sacramental theology indicate, Orthodox theologians often have insisted that the priest is the proper "minister of the Sacrament", whereas Roman Catholic theologians more often have spoken of the couple as "ministering the sacrament to each other".

We do not wish to underestimate the seriousness of these differences in practice and theological explanation. We consider their further study to be desirable. At the same time, we wish to emphasize our fundamental agreement. Both our churches have always agreed that ecclesial context is constitutive of the Christian sacrament of marriage. Within this fundamental agreement, history has shown various possibilities of realization so that no one particular form of expressing this ecclesial context may be considered absolutely normative in all circumstances for both churches. In our judgment, our present differences of practice and theology concerning the required ecclesial context for marriage pertain to the level of secondary theological reflection rather than to the level of dogma.

The Enduring Nature of Marriage

The common teaching of our churches follows Sacred Scripture in affirming the enduring nature of marriage. Already the Old Testament used marriage to describe the covenantal relationship between God and God's people (Hosea). The Epistle to the Ephesians saw marriage as the type of the relationship which exists between Christ and the Church (Eph 5:31-33). Jesus spoke of marriage as established "from the beginning of creation." He also taught: "And the two shall become one. So they are no longer two but one. What therefore God has joined together, let no man put asunder." (Mk 10:6,8-9; Mt 19:4-6).

A number of scholars of Sacred Scripture in our churches consider it likely that Jesus' teaching about the indissolubility of marriage may have already been interpreted and adjusted by New Testament writers, moved by the Holy Spirit, to respond to new circumstances and pastoral problems (cf. Mt 5:32 and 1 Cor 7:15). Hence they ask, if Matthew, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, could have been moved to add an exceptive phrase to Jesus' saying about divorce, or if Paul, similarly inspired, could have introduced an exception on his own authority, then would it be possible for those exercising authoritative pastoral decision-making in today's Church to explore the examination of exceptions?

Our churches have expressed their conviction concerning the enduring nature of Christian marriage in diverse ways. In the canonical discipline of the Orthodox Church, for example, perpetual monogamy is upheld as the norm of marriage, so that those entering upon a second or subsequent marriage are subject to penance even in the case of widows and widowers. In the Roman Catholic Church the enduring nature of marriage has been emphasized especially in the absolute prohibition of divorce.

Our churches have also responded in diverse ways to the tragedies which can beset marriage in our fallen world. The Orthodox Church, following Mt 19:9 ("whoever divorces his wife except for unchastity, and marries another, commits adultery"), permits divorce under certain circumstance, not only in the case of adultery but also of other serious assaults on the moral and spiritual foundation of marriage (secret abortion, endangering the life of the spouse, forcing the spouse to prostitution and similar abusive situations). Out of pastoral consideration and in order better to serve the spiritual needs of the faithful, the Orthodox Church tolerates remarriage of divorced persons under certain specific circumstances as it permits the remarriage of widows and widowers under certain specific circumstances. The Roman Catholic Church has responded in other ways to such difficult situations. In order to resolve the personal and pastoral issues of failed consummated marriages, it undertakes inquiries to establish whether there may have existed some initial defect in the marriage covenant which provides grounds for the Church to make a declaration of nullity, that is, a decision attesting that the marriage lacked validity. It also recognizes the possibility of dissolving sacramental non-consummated marriages through papal dispensation. While it true that the Roman Catholic Church does not grant dissolution of the bond of a consummated sacramental marriage, it remains a question among theologians whether this is founded on a prudential judgment or on the Church's perception that it lacks the power to dissolve such a bond.

Study of the history of our various traditions has led us to conclude that some at times may raise a particular theological explanation of relatively recent origin to the level of unchangeable doctrine. The Second Vatican Council's "Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World" stated that there was need for a renewal of the Roman Catholic Church's understanding and approach to its teaching on marriage. That council implicitly recognized that teaching on marriage had frequently proceeded from a biological and juridical point of view rather than from an interpersonal and existential one.

Spiritual Formation of Children

We also share a common conviction that in marriages in which one spouse is Catholic and the other is Orthodox both should take an active role in every aspect of their children's spiritual formation. Our priests are expected to counsel parents and children against indifference in religious matters. But since unity in Christ through the Holy Spirit is the ultimate goal of family life, all family members should be willing in a spirit of love, trust and freedom, to learn more about their Christian faith. They are expected to pray, study, discuss and seek unity in Christ and to express their commitment to this unity in all aspects of their lives.

In marriages in which our two churches are involved, decisions, including the initial one of the children's church membership, rest with both husband and wife. The decisions should take into account the good of the children, the strength of the religious convictions of the parents and other relatives, the demands of parents' consciences, the unity and stability of the family, and other specific contexts. In some cases, when it appears highly probable that only one of the partners will fulfill his or her responsibility, it seems desirable that children should be raised in that partner's church. In other cases, the children's spiritual formation may include a fuller participation in the life and traditions of both churches, respecting always each church's canonical order. In these cases, the decision regarding the children's church membership is more difficult to make. Yet we are convinced that it is possible to make this decision in good conscience because of the proximity of our churches' doctrine and practice which enables each, to a high degree, to see the other precisely as Church, as the locus for the communion of the faithful with God and with each other through Jesus Christ in the Holy Spirit.

Recommendations

In the light of our discussion together, we submit to our churches the following recommendations which we judge will greatly contribute to promoting Christian charity and honesty in our two sister churches in regard to marriages between our faithful.

(1) We urge that SCOBA and the NCCB establish and sponsor a joint committee to prepare for publication our common teaching regarding Christian marriage, family life, and the spiritual formation of children. Such an ecumenical publication would be produced in common for the guidance of our clergy and the use of all involved in marriages between Orthodox and Roman Catholics. Such material would reflect the profound spirit of love and commitment to Christian unity that has marked our churches in recent times. Such a publication would indicate that our common faith leads to the recognition of the sacramentality of marriage in each other's church.

We recommend that, in this jointly prepared material, pastors and couples be offered up-to-date information about the recent and persistent efforts to foster a closer relationship between our two churches. It would encourage Orthodox-Catholic families to draw deeply from the spiritual wealth of both churches. It would urge them to safeguard the richness and integrity of each tradition by cautioning against attempts to absorb one partner into the other's Church.

We also recommend that this material include sensitive and accurate presentation of the present canonical discipline of our churches with regard to marriage in order to aid pastors in counseling couples in a responsible manner, especially if there has been a previous marriage.
(2) We recommend that when an Orthodox and Catholic marry there be only one liturgical ceremony in which either one or both priests are present, with the rite being that of the officiating priest. The guest priest, normally dressed in cassock, would be invited to greet the bride and groom and to offer a prayer toward the end of the ceremony. We recommend that such marriages be recorded in the registries of both churches.

We recommend that in the case of marriages celebrated in the past, if it should be decided that some supplementary liturgical action is needed for a member to be readmitted to full eucharistic communion in one's church, care should be taken that this liturgical celebration avoid the impression of being another marriage ceremony thereby implying that what had already taken place was not a marriage.

We earnestly submit these recommendations to the NCCB and SCOBA for adoption and rapid implementation by our churches.

While recognizing the integrity of the canonical and pastoral practices and procedures in both our churches which seek to provide for the faithful whose marriages have failed, we also note the major differences which exist between our practices and procedures. We therefore would also encourage further serious and specific study by canonists and others in a common effort to understand and, in so far as possible, resolve these differences of practice and procedure to move toward a commonly accepted declaration of freedom to marry. Our own Joint Committee, with the assistance of the U.S. Orthodox/Roman Catholic Consultation, and of specialists in canon law, church history, and sacramental theology, hopes to pursue this ongoing task.

We realize that this undertaking, as well as the many others that lie before us, is of such magnitude that it cannot be accomplished easily or quickly. Yet, relying on the Holy Spirit, we are confident that it can be achieved, given the spirit of trust and cooperation which exists in our churches and which we have experienced in our own deliberations.

October 5, 1990
Johnstown, PA
9th Meeting
http://www.scoba.us/resources/orthodox-catholic-bishops/orthodox-catholic-marriages.html


Just speaking from similar situations of mixed marriages between Ukrainian Catholics and Ukrainian Orthodox of my friends, all the marriages except one have been in the Orthodox Church. The Ukrainian Catholic priests were not allowed to take part in the ceremony although they can be present in the church. Often the Catholic priests are asked to chant grace at the reception and also to speak.
About 2 years ago a male friend from my parish married a Ukrainian-Catholic girl and the wedding was in her parish. Although our parish priest was invited to take part in the wedding ceremony, it is against the rules of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church for him to do so and he refused. Our priest did attend the reception with his wife and chanted the grace before the meal and the Ukrainian Catholic priest gave the blessing at the end of the meal. In this case the groom before the marriage agreed to be married in the Ukrainian Cathic church and to have all children baptised Ukrainian Catholic. He however is remaining Ukrainian Orthodox and I beleive no pressure was put on him to leave our church. For the sake of the two families it is fortunate, this was decided before the marriage.

This is how things work in my church (our priests do not participate in the services/sacraments of other churches) and I will let others tell their tales and offer advice.
I sincerely hope something can be worked out and there is not be a major disruption in your family life.
Posted By: Two Lungs

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/26/08 01:17 AM

Originally Posted by Grace7

We are Byzantine Catholics who have a daughter who is engaged to an Orthodox man. Unfortunately, her fiance is a convert from evangelicalism, and has a lot of anti-Catholic baggage. He has even questioned our daughter attending Divine Liturgy with us since we are "protestants" and it is a "protestant church." Under his influence, our daughter has been leaning ...


Dear Grace,

I don't know if I can offer advice, but I am very worried about your daughter. I will pray for her.

I think she may have fallen in love with a deep seated control freak kind of guy. Someone who really knows very little about Christianity, and talks about it constantly. crazy

You say this "man" came from an Evangelical church background and is calling your Catholic family "Protestant"? Whatever evangelical tradition he was part of, I have never found one who confused Catholics and Protestants this way.

I've found Orthodox Church members who don't like or respect Catholics, but none ever called us Protestants (some of them might think we aren't as good as Protestants, though).

This fellow sounds almost like an Islamic fanatic is his application of some kind of "Orthodox Sharia Law" against your family.

I will pray for your daughter, that she finds wise counsel from a spiritual Father in the Orthodox Church, someone who will help build up a family, rather than tear it apart.

Please remember --- our Creed says that we believe in One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. Our Eastern Catholic Churches live this every day. Many have suffered and died for this. The Catholic Churches basically consider the Orthodox to be our sisters. There is only one Church --- the divisions are caused by the accumulated sins of twenty centuries.

I will pray for your daughter.

And I will pray that there is some Christian love of neighbor in that Orthodox Church she is being pulled into, that would build up a family, rather than tear it apart.

Posted By: Halia12

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/26/08 01:43 AM

Quote
I don't know if I can offer advice, but I am very worried about your daughter. I will pray for her.

I think she may have fallen in love with a deep seated control freak kind of guy. Someone who really knows very little about Christianity, and talks about it constantly.

You say this "man" came from an Evangelical church background and is calling your Catholic family "Protestant"? Whatever evangelical tradition he was part of, I have never found one who confused Catholics and Protestants this way.

I've found Orthodox Church members who don't like or respect Catholics, but none ever called us Protestants (some of them might think we aren't as good as Protestants, though).

This fellow sounds almost like an Islamic fanatic is his application of some kind of "Orthodox Sharia Law" against your family.

Good for you Two Lungs for having the wisdom and spiritual discernment to see this so clearly. I think you have found the root of the problem. If this is part of the young man's charcter, the intened bride may encounter more serious problems and maybe even abuse after the marriage. I can see why her parents are rightly concerned about the turn of events.

From my limited experience of reading Orthodox discussions groups, I have unfortunately read some very extreme fanatical an what I consider non-Orthodox views bordering on cult behaviour of former Evangelical Protestants in the Antiochian Orthodox Church. Not to say all converts are like this. I say this as an Orthodox discussing my own bretheran.

Seeing how my own parish priest behaves in preparing mixed- couples for marriage, I would hope that the groom's priest treats the bride and her family with love and respect for their religious traditions. Maybe a meetig with both families and both priests could help the situation.
Let's all pray for the two families involved.
Posted By: Two Lungs

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/26/08 02:19 AM

Originally Posted by Halia12

Seeing how my own parish priest behaves in preparing mixed- couples for marriage, I would hope that the groom's priest treats the bride and her family with love and respect for their religious traditions. Maybe a meetig with both families and both priests could help the situation.
Let's all pray for the two families involved.



Dear Halia12,

Thank you for your kindness.

I hope their Priest does thorough interviews with the bride and groom and asks the families to come in to talk also. Some Priests are very good at it, others seem to rush through. I hope their Priest works on it.
Posted By: Prester John

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/26/08 03:06 AM

I'm sorry that guy is such an idiot.
Posted By: Elizabeth Maria

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/26/08 05:17 AM

Almost all Orthodox Priests from the West Coast whom I have met would not have received that guy into Orthodoxy with that rabid anti-Catholic attitude.
Posted By: Irish Melkite

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/26/08 07:04 AM

Grace,

I can only agree with the observations made above by my brethren - and I think it's telling that those who have done so include both Catholics and Orthodox.

To be frank, converts to any Church who strive to be "more ... than ..." (fill in the blanks - Catholic, the Pope or Patriarch; Orthodox, the Ecumenical Patriarch or Patriarch of Moscow) both concern and scare me. To them, religion is not faith, but obsession/fanaticism. In my experience, the most common description of Eastern Catholics by true "hard-core" Orthodox would be that we are really Latins playing at being Orthodox. That we are Protestants is a real stretch and would cause me to look askance at the person espousing the thought (and I don't look askance at much after all these years).

There is no wisdom that I can offer which has not been posted, but I do want to remark on your final statement, regarding not attending the marriage if it would not be accepted as valid in your Church. Were it my daughter, I'd attend. Given the circumstances, this is not a time to break ties, particularly as she may well need your spiritual and/or emotional support in the future.

Prayers for all of you.

Many years,

Neil
Posted By: Two Lungs

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/26/08 08:06 AM

Originally Posted by Elizabeth Maria
Almost all Orthodox Priests from the West Coast whom I have met would not have received that guy into Orthodoxy with that rabid anti-Catholic attitude.


I think you are very right about that.
Posted By: Two Lungs

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/26/08 08:13 AM

Originally Posted by Irish Melkite


There is no wisdom that I can offer which has not been posted, but I do want to remark on your final statement, regarding not attending the marriage if it would not be accepted as valid in your Church. Were it my daughter, I'd attend. Given the circumstances, this is not a time to break ties, particularly as she may well need your spiritual and/or emotional support in the future.

Prayers for all of you.

Many years,

Neil



Neil gives good advice.

Your daughter will need you, for prayer and for hand-holding.
Posted By: theophilus

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/26/08 01:43 PM

Grace7,

To answer your question: If a Catholic is married in an Orthodox Church without permission of the Catholic Bishop, then the Catholic Church will still consider it to be a "valid marriage in the Catholic Church". It would not be an invalid marriage such as the case of a Catholic marriage in a Protestant Church or a secular marriage. Although considered valid, it would still be illicit (without permission), so why not get the permission?
Posted By: Our Lady's slave

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/26/08 04:36 PM

I had really not intended to post on this thread .

BUT

I think that some of us are forgetting something posted in the original post by Grace7
Quote
But if she is leaving the Catholic Church, joining the Orthodox Church, and getting married without the approval of her Catholic bishop, how will her marriage be viewed by the Catholic Church. I am sure it will be valid in the Orthodox Church, but as her parents and as Byzantine Catholics, it is important to us that her marriage is valid in the Catholic Church as well. My understanding is that in the case of a Catholic getting married in a protestant church without permission from the bishop, the marriage is not considered valid.


If their daughter is converting to Orthodoxy then she is leaving the Catholic Church [ here meaning Byzantine ] and so no permission from any Eparch/Exarch is required for the marriage to be in an Orthodox Church.

If she has become Orthodox before her wedding then she is Orthodox and married validly in the Church to which she now belongs.
Posted By: Irish Melkite

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/27/08 08:15 AM

Originally Posted by Our Lady's slave
If their daughter is converting to Orthodoxy then she is leaving the Catholic Church [ here meaning Byzantine ] and so no permission from any Eparch/Exarch is required for the marriage to be in an Orthodox Church.

If she has become Orthodox before her wedding then she is Orthodox and married validly in the Church to which she now belongs.


Anhelynha makes a very valid point. My advice about attending still stands.

Many years,

Neil
Posted By: Grace7

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 02/29/08 07:21 AM

I want to thank everyone for their insights and input on the situation with my daughter. I was finally able to track down the priest that married my husband and me. He is extraordinarily knowledgeable and has a solid grasp of Eastern Canon Law. What he told me (and he will be confirming this within the next couple of days) is that (as Theophilus stated) the marriage will be valid but illicit. Yes, it would be nice if they got permission, but I don't think that is going to happen. However, if the marriage is actually valid, then I think we can in good conscience attend. I agree that this is not a good time to be tearing down bridges that might be important to our relationship in the future.

Another fact that this priest shared with me, that I think the readers of the this forum might be interested in hearing, is that in the case of a marriage between someone who is Orthodox and someone who is Catholic, the Catholic Church actually recommends (out of respect for the person who is Orthodox) that the couple is married in the Orthodox Church (with the proper permission and with a Catholic priest present) so that the marriage will be considered valid in both churches.

Thank you again for your help and please keep us in your prayers.

Grace
Posted By: theophilus

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 03/29/08 02:29 AM

Deacon Anthony,

Maybe not so "Unthinkable!" or "Unheard-of!"

I finally found a 12th century quote by the Patriarch of Antioch, Theodore Balsamon -- highly regarded by both Catholic and Orthodox scholars.

After quoting Mark 10, 6-8, The Patriarch says, "we believe and confess that the spouses are on account of the marriage, reckoned to be one humanity having more or less the same soul, which is perceived in two hypostases."
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 03/29/08 04:48 AM

Originally Posted by theophilus
Deacon Anthony,

Maybe not so "Unthinkable!" or "Unheard-of!"

I finally found a 12th century quote by the Patriarch of Antioch, Theodore Balsamon -- highly regarded by both Catholic and Orthodox scholars.

After quoting Mark 10, 6-8, The Patriarch says, "we believe and confess that the spouses are on account of the marriage, reckoned to be one humanity having more or less the same soul, which is perceived in two hypostases."


Thanks for the digging.

"reckoned to be one humanity" = one flesh? ok [What's the word used for "humanity", (Greek) sarx?]

"having more or less the same soul" = ? I can't figure this one; sounds like he's not sure himself.

"perceived in two hypostases" -- "perceived"? Would want to know the actual word. But the "two hypostases" confirms my point: hypostasis=person, therefore there are two persons:

Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by Apotheoun
... it is true that husband and wife, i.e., head and body in marital union, through the mystery of crowning form one person ... a new ontological hypostatic reality through the union of the spouses...


Two persons become one person? "Unthinkable!" "Unheard-of!" Has anyone else (preferably orthodox) used person in this way, or does it spring forth anew here?

Dn. Anthony




Dn. Anthony

Posted By: theophilus

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 03/29/08 08:10 PM

Deacon Anthony,

The quotation is from the Syntagma, edited by G.A. Rhalles and M. Potles from 1852 to 1859 in six volumes. I do not know enough Greek to know what exactly is behind the English translation. I do take this 12th century quotation as evidence that the idea of "eternal marriage" is not a modern innovation. And it is not viewed as contradicting the idea of "not given into marriage in Heaven".

In the same section of volume 4, Patriarch Theodore Balsamon seems to believe that marriage is an icon of the Trinity. One eternal essence (soul and/or humanity) created by marriage existing in two persons -- correcting some of what was said previously in the thread. Whatever the oneness is exactly, it does not end at the time of death as understood in the West.

Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 03/29/08 10:29 PM

Originally Posted by theophilus
One eternal essence (soul and/or humanity) created by marriage existing in two persons -- correcting some of what was said previously in the thread.


Theophilus,

Thanks again for following up; "marriage existing in two persons" is the point I was advocating.

Concerning the other subtopic of this thread that you mention -- 'the idea of "eternal marriage" is not a modern innovation. And it is not viewed as contradicting the idea of "not given into marriage in Heaven",' -- I don't believe I expressed an opinion.

Dn. Anthony
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 11/20/15 06:33 PM

That the priestly blessing is not an absolute requirement of true marriage between Christians is proved by the Council of Trent's toleration of past clandestine marriages.
Tametsi dubitandum non est clandestina matrimonia libero contrahentium consensu facta rata et vera esse matrimonia quamdiu ecclesia ea irrita non fecit
Although is not to be doubted that clandestine marriages contracted by free consent are made authoritatively and truly to be marriages as long as the Church has not made them void...
..eos sancta synodus anathemate damnat qui ea vera ac rata esse negant...
....the holy Council condemns with anathema those who deny they are true and authoritative...
Some translate rata as "valid" and irrita as "invalid," which is acceptable but not the only possible meanings. The more precise terms are validus and invalidus. For example, validus is used in Session 24, Canon 9 condemning those who hold that clerics or those with solemn vows of chastity may contract a valid marriage.
It is taught by Pope Leo XIII (Arcanum, 23-24) and other Popes that the Sacrament of Matrimony is not some second thing added to Christian marriage. Rather, the marriage-contract itself is the sacrament, for Christ sanctified marriage itself.
23. Let no one, then, be deceived by the distinction which some civil jurists have so strongly insisted upon - the distinction, namely, by virtue of which they sever the matrimonial contract from the sacrament, with intent to hand over the contract to the power and will of the rulers of the State, while reserving questions concerning the sacrament of the Church. A distinction, or rather severance, of this kind cannot be approved; for certain it is that in Christian marriage the contract is inseparable from the sacrament, and that, for this reason, the contract cannot be true and legitimate without being a sacrament as well. For Christ our Lord added to marriage the dignity of a sacrament; but marriage is the contract itself, whenever that contract is lawfully concluded.
24. Marriage, moreover, is a sacrament, because it is a holy sign which gives grace, showing forth an image of the mystical nuptials of Christ with the Church. But the form and image of these nuptials is shown precisely by the very bond of that most close union in which man and woman are bound together in one; which bond is nothing else but the marriage itself. Hence it is clear that among Christians every true marriage is, in itself and by itself, a sacrament; and that nothing can be further from the truth than to say that the sacrament is a certain added ornament, or outward endowment, which can be separated and torn away from the contract at the caprice of man. Neither, therefore, by reasoning can it be shown, nor by any testimony of history be proved, that power over the marriages of Christians has ever lawfully been handed over to the rulers of the State. If, in this matter, the right of anyone else has ever been violated, no one can truly say that it has been violated by the Church. Would that the teaching of the naturalists, besides being full of falsehood and injustice, were not also the fertile source of much detriment and calamity! But it is easy to see at a glance the greatness of the evil which unhallowed marriages have brought, and ever will bring, on the whole of human society.

Once this is accepted, the position held by all Catholic theologians practically follows, as sententia certa. Marriage as such is a contract, and the essence of a contract (i.e., that which makes it a contract) is the consent of the parties. Since marriage between Christians and the Sacrament of Matrimony are one and the same thing, the essence of the sacrament must be the same, i.e., the consent of the parties. From this it follows that the betrothed are the ministers of the sacrament.
The blessing of the priest may be made a necessary condition for canonical validity, but this does not imply that the blessing is the essence or even the efficient cause of the sacrament. Earth and sky may be necessary conditions for a horse's existence, but they are not what makes a horse a horse, nor do they cause the horse to be. Likewise, the execution of a contract may require certain conditions, such as the presence of witnesses or a notary, but the essence of the contract remains the consent of the parties who thereby bring it into effect.
The modern Orthodox may find it scandalous to speak of the Sacrament of Matrimony in such worldly, juridical terms. Yet to refrain from this is to ignore in this case that Christ has the power to sanctify the earthly, not by adding something alien to it, but by operating within its essence.
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 11/20/15 06:34 PM

S.T. Supplement, Q. 45, A. 5

On the contrary, Given the cause the effect follows. Now the sufficient cause of matrimony is consent expressed in words of the present. Therefore whether this be done in public or in private the result is a marriage.

Further, wherever there is the due matter and the due form of a sacrament there is the sacrament. Now in a secret marriage there is the due matter, since there are persons who are able lawfully to contract--and the due form, since there are the words of the present expressive of consent. Therefore there is a true marriage.

I answer that, Just as in the other sacraments certain things are essential to the sacrament, and if they are omitted there is no sacrament, while certain things belong to the solemnization of the sacrament, and if these be omitted the sacrament is nevertheless validly performed, although it is a sin to omit them; so, too, consent expressed in words of the present between persons lawfully qualified to contract makes a marriage, because these two conditions are essential to the sacrament; while all else belongs to the solemnization of the sacrament, as being done in order that the marriage may be more fittingly performed. Hence if these be omitted it is a true marriage, although the contracting parties sin, unless they have a lawful motive for being excused. [Clandestine marriages have since been declared invalid by the Council of Trent (sess. xxiv). It must be borne in mind that throughout the treatise on marriage St. Thomas gives the Canon Law of his time.]

Reply to Objection 1. The maid is in her father's power, not as a female slave without power over her own body, but as a daughter, for the purpose of education. Hence, in so far as she is free, she can give herself into another's power without her father's consent, even as a son or daughter, since they are free, may enter religion without their parent's consent.

Reply to Objection 2. In penance our act, although essential to the sacrament, does not suffice for producing the proximate effect of the sacrament, namely forgiveness of sins, and consequently it is necessary that the act of the priest intervene in order that the sacrament be perfected. But in matrimony our acts are the sufficient cause for the production of the proximate effect, which is the marriage bond, because whoever has the right to dispose of himself can bind himself to another. Consequently the priest's blessing is not required for matrimony as being essential to the sacrament.

Reply to Objection 3. It is also forbidden to receive baptism otherwise than from a priest, except in a case of necessity. But matrimony is not a necessary sacrament: and consequently the comparison fails. However, clandestine marriages are forbidden on account of the evil results to which they are liable, since it often happens that one of the parties is guilty of fraud in such marriages; frequently, too, they have recourse to other nuptials when they repent of having married in haste; and many other evils result therefrom, besides which there is something disgraceful about them.

Reply to Objection 4. Clandestine marriages are not forbidden as though they were contrary to the essentials of marriage, in the same way as the marriages of unlawful persons, who are undue matter for this sacrament; and hence there is no comparison.

It is likewise erroneous to consider the priest the minister of the sacrament;
Syllabus of Errors, St. Pius IX
66. The Sacrament of Marriage is only a something accessory to the contract and separate from it, and the sacrament itself consists in the nuptial benediction alone. -- Ibid.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 11/21/15 11:18 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
S.T. Supplement, Q. 45, A. 5

...

It is likewise erroneous to consider the priest the minister of the sacrament;
Syllabus of Errors, St. Pius IX
66. The Sacrament of Marriage is only a something accessory to the contract and separate from it, and the sacrament itself consists in the nuptial benediction alone. -- Ibid.


Thanks for all of this documentation, it's a lot to consider. Just five quick responses here:

1. The Summa Theologiae is a wonderful work but it is of course not automatically or as a whole de fide (and the supplement was compiled after the death of St. Thomas).

2. What is meant by clandestine?

3. What is the status of two Catholics who marry before a non-Catholic minister without dispensation and do so: (i) secretly/privately; (ii) openly/publicly?

4. The statement that it is "erroneous to consider the priest the minister of the sacrament" does not follow from a close reading of Syllabus of Errors 66. Certainly Byzantine theology and ritual affirm the sense of both mutual consent and blessing of the Church in an appropriate manner forming one integrated act. Also, the church east and west has always acknowledged the cultural aspect of marriage: giving away the bride, or not, dowries (?), especially formal betrothals e.g. as in the Byzantine ritual, etc. Of all the sacraments, marriage cannot be viewed with one particular cultural mindset and must be interpreted accordingly as to intent.

5. CCC 1623 According to Latin tradition, the spouses as ministers of Christ's grace mutually confer upon each other the sacrament of Matrimony by expressing their consent before the Church. In the tradition of the Eastern Churches, the priests (bishops or presbyters) are witnesses to the mutual consent given by the spouses,124 but for the validity of the sacrament their blessing is also necessary.125
------------
124 Cf. CCEO, can. 817
125 Cf. CCEO, can. 828
link


1623 Secundum traditionem latinam, sponsi, tamquam ministri gratiae Christi, sibi mutuo Matrimonii conferunt sacramentum, suum consensum coram Ecclesia significantes. In traditionibus Ecclesiarum Orientalium, sacerdotes — Episcopi vel presbyteri — testes sunt consensus mutuo ab sponsis praestiti, 275 sed etiam eorum benedictio ad validitatem sacramenti est necessaria. link
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/07/15 01:20 PM

"1. The Summa Theologiae is a wonderful work but it is of course not automatically or as a whole de fide (and the supplement was compiled after the death of St. Thomas)."

I never made that claim. In fact, it would be absurd for me to do so, since only the magisterium can claim something is de fide. Perhaps you meant infallible?


"2. What is meant by clandestine?"

Done in secret.

"3. What is the status of two Catholics who marry before a non-Catholic minister without dispensation and do so: (i) secretly/privately; (ii) openly/publicly?"

Well, why would two Catholics be getting married outside of the Church in the first place? Anyhow, it would be invalid under both circumstances.

"4. The statement that it is "erroneous to consider the priest the minister of the sacrament" does not follow from a close reading of Syllabus of Errors 66."

The issue at hand is, *who* is the minister of the sacrament. The Catholic Church's position is the couple, and not the priest. According to the East it is the priest's blessing which confers the sacrament. Two completely different views on sacramental theology.

Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/07/15 01:24 PM

What Pope St. Pius IX is saying, is exactly what I stated above,

Marriage as such is a contract, and the essence of a contract (i.e., that which makes it a contract) is the consent of the parties. Since marriage between Christians and the Sacrament of Matrimony are one and the same thing, the essence of the sacrament must be the same, i.e., the consent of the parties. From this it follows that the betrothed are the ministers of the sacrament.

The blessing of the priest may be made a necessary condition for canonical validity, but this does not imply that the blessing is the essence or even the efficient cause of the sacrament. Earth and sky may be necessary conditions for a horse's existence, but they are not what makes a horse a horse, nor do they cause the horse to be. Likewise, the execution of a contract may require certain conditions, such as the presence of witnesses or a notary, but the essence of the contract remains the consent of the parties who thereby bring it into effect.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/07/15 02:48 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"1. The Summa Theologiae is a wonderful work but it is of course not automatically or as a whole de fide (and the supplement was compiled after the death of St. Thomas)."

I never made that claim. In fact, it would be absurd for me to do so, since only the magisterium can claim something is de fide. Perhaps you meant infallible?
No, I meant de fide; it's also not infallible.


Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"2. What is meant by clandestine?"

Done in secret.
Who must be present for a clandestine marriage between two Catholics to be valid?

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"3. What is the status of two Catholics who marry before a non-Catholic minister without dispensation and do so: (i) secretly/privately; (ii) openly/publicly?"

Well, why would two Catholics be getting married outside of the Church in the first place? Anyhow, it would be invalid under both circumstances.
Catholics do get married outside of the Church. Invalid for both (i) and (ii) you say. What exactly makes it invalid in each case?

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"4. The statement that it is "erroneous to consider the priest the minister of the sacrament" does not follow from a close reading of Syllabus of Errors 66."

The issue at hand is, *who* is the minister of the sacrament. The Catholic Church's position is the couple, and not the priest. According to the East it is the priest's blessing which confers the sacrament. Two completely different views on sacramental theology.


Your question is only about the minister and not the whole of the sacramental theology of marriage. Priests in Byzantine Churches are ordinary ministers of Chrismation but are not in the Latin Church.

Also, your conclusion does not match the sentiments of the CCC. It notes two traditions, "Latin" and "Eastern Churches." Did you read it? Comments and analysis?

Quote
5. CCC 1623 According to Latin tradition, the spouses as ministers of Christ's grace mutually confer upon each other the sacrament of Matrimony by expressing their consent before the Church. In the tradition of the Eastern Churches, the priests (bishops or presbyters) are witnesses to the mutual consent given by the spouses,124 but for the validity of the sacrament their blessing is also necessary.125
------------
124 Cf. CCEO, can. 817
125 Cf. CCEO, can. 828

1623 Secundum traditionem latinam, sponsi, tamquam ministri gratiae Christi, sibi mutuo Matrimonii conferunt sacramentum, suum consensum coram Ecclesia significantes. In traditionibus Ecclesiarum Orientalium, sacerdotes — Episcopi vel presbyteri — testes sunt consensus mutuo ab sponsis praestiti, 275 sed etiam eorum benedictio ad validitatem sacramenti est necessaria.



A problem is that you are mixing concepts. You say here:
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
The issue at hand is, *who* is the minister of the sacrament.



But your initial post, quoting Trent, had a different point (nothing about minister) and scope (Christian not just Catholic):
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
That the priestly blessing is not an absolute requirement of true marriage between Christians ...
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/07/15 04:44 PM

"No, I meant de fide; it's also not infallible."

How can the Summa Theologiae be "de fide"? Only the magisterium can declare what is de fide doctrine or not. The Summa Theologiae doesn't comprise any part of the magisterium.


"Who must be present for a clandestine marriage between two Catholics to be valid?"


MARRIAGE CELEBRATED SECRETLY

Can. 1130 For a grave and urgent cause, the local ordinary can permit a marriage to be celebrated secretly.

Can. 1131 Permission to celebrate a marriage secretly entails the following:

1/ the investigations which must be conducted before the marriage are done secretly;

2/ the local ordinary, the one assisting, the witnesses, and the spouses observe secrecy about the marriage celebrated.

Can. 1132 The obligation of observing the secrecy mentioned in ⇒ can. 1131, n. 2 ceases on the part of the local ordinary if grave scandal or grave harm to the holiness of marriage is imminent due to the observance of the secret; this is to be made known to the parties before the celebration of the marriage.

Can. 1133 A marriage celebrated secretly is to be noted only in a special register to be kept in the secret archive of the curia.


"Catholics do get married outside of the Church. Invalid for both (i) and (ii) you say. What exactly makes it invalid in each case?"

Firstly, there is no reason why two Catholics would be getting married outside the Church in the first place. Nor would a bishop grant a dispensation to two Catholics. It simply doesn't make any sense. The only reason a dispensation would be given, is in the case of a mixed marriage. Since Catholics are bound to the Church's laws, a dispensation must be granted for a marriage to be considered valid.


"Also, your conclusion does not match the sentiments of the CCC. It notes two traditions, "Latin" and "Eastern Churches." Did you read it? Comments and analysis?"

The CCC is simply expressing the respective traditions. It doesn't say that both have equal merits.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/08/15 09:54 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"No, I meant de fide; it's also not infallible."

How can the Summa Theologiae be "de fide"? Only the magisterium can declare what is de fide doctrine or not. The Summa Theologiae doesn't comprise any part of the magisterium.
Yes, well said. And the magisterium is all the bishops of the Catholic Church, East and West, in communion and teaching as one through the person of the bishop of Rome.

Originally Posted by RomCatholic

"Who must be present for a clandestine marriage between two Catholics to be valid?"


MARRIAGE CELEBRATED SECRETLY

Can. 1130 For a grave and urgent cause, the local ordinary can permit a marriage to be celebrated secretly.

Can. 1131 Permission to celebrate a marriage secretly entails the following:

1/ the investigations which must be conducted before the marriage are done secretly;

2/ the local ordinary, the one assisting, the witnesses, and the spouses observe secrecy about the marriage celebrated.

Can. 1132 The obligation of observing the secrecy mentioned in ⇒ can. 1131, n. 2 ceases on the part of the local ordinary if grave scandal or grave harm to the holiness of marriage is imminent due to the observance of the secret; this is to be made known to the parties before the celebration of the marriage.

Can. 1133 A marriage celebrated secretly is to be noted only in a special register to be kept in the secret archive of the curia.
So this is a Catholic ceremony with the minimum need for validity: spouses, witnesses and who else? Must an approved ritual be used? Who conducts the ceremony?


Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"Catholics do get married outside of the Church. Invalid for both (i) and (ii) you say. What exactly makes it invalid in each case?"

Firstly, there is no reason why two Catholics would be getting married outside the Church in the first place.
Yes of course.


Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Nor would a bishop grant a dispensation to two Catholics. It simply doesn't make any sense. The only reason a dispensation would be given, is in the case of a mixed marriage. Since Catholics are bound to the Church's laws, a dispensation must be granted for a marriage to be considered valid.
The issue of a clandestine marriage and here Canon Law does not address who is the minister(s) of marriage, and the Summa is theological opinion or conjecture. In fact, there is no such de fide statement, is there? In Can. 1131n.2 who is "the one assisting"?


Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"Also, your conclusion does not match the sentiments of the CCC. It notes two traditions, "Latin" and "Eastern Churches." Did you read it? Comments and analysis?"

The CCC is simply expressing the respective traditions. It doesn't say that both have equal merits.
So one may conclude then that the Byzantine, Eastern Church tradition has greater merit?
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/08/15 11:01 AM

"And the magisterium is all the bishops of the Catholic Church, East and West, in communion and teaching as one through the person of the bishop of Rome."

Magisterium (Lat. magister, a master): The Church's divinely appointed authority to teach the truths of religion, "Going therefore, teach ye all nations... teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you" (Matt. xxviii, 19-20). This teaching is infallible: "And behold I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world" (ibid.). The solemn magisterium is that which is exercised only rarely by formal and authentic definitions of councils or popes. Its matter comprises dogmatic definitions of ecumenical councils or of the popes teaching ex cathedra, or of particular councils, if their decrees are universally accepted or approved in solemn form by the pope; also creeds and professions of faith put forward or solemnly approved by pope or ecumenical council. The ordinary magisterium is continually exercised by the Church especially in her universal practices connected with faith and morals, in the unanimous consent of the Fathers (q.v.) and theologians, in the decisions of Roman Congregations concerning faith and morals, in the common sense (q.v.) of the faithful, and various historical documents in which the faith is declared. All these are founts of a teaching,which as a whole is infallible. They have to be studied separately to determine how far and in what conditions each of them is an infallible source of truth.


"So this is a Catholic ceremony with the minimum need for validity: spouses, witnesses and who else? Must an approved ritual be used? Who conducts the ceremony?"

The Church reserves the right to permit the celebration of “secret marriages” or “clandestine marriages”, that is to say, marriages that are not recognized by the State in certain circumstances. Canons 1130 – 1133 of the Latin Code (and can. 840 of the Eastern Code) provide the parameters.

A secret marriage can only be permitted by the local ordinary (i.e., the diocesan bishop, vicar general, or an episcopal vicar), the parties involved must observe secrecy (only the priest, the couple, and two witnesses should be present at the wedding), and the marriage is recorded only in a special register in the secret archives of the diocesan curia.

http://wdtprs.com/blog/2014/01/ask-father-secret-marriage-to-avoid-government/



"The issue of a clandestine marriage and here Canon Law does not address who is the minister(s) of marriage,"

The ministers of the sacrament itself is the couple. The priest merely serves as a witness to the marriage. That's why it doesn't mention who the ministers are.

"and the Summa is theological opinion or conjecture. In fact, there is no such de fide statement,"

See Ludwig Ott, Fundementals of Catholic Dogma, pg. 9-10

That the spouses are the ministers of the sacrament of matrimony is sententia certa.


"So one may conclude then that the Byzantine, Eastern Church tradition has greater merit?"

No. The Catholic Church's stance has been that the spouses are the ministers of the sacrament. This is shown from Pope St. Leo XIII (Arcanum, 23-24), Pope St. Pius IX (Syllabus of Errors,
66), and any Catholic dogmatic treatise on matrimony. See for example Pohle-Preuss.

https://archive.org/stream/V11ExtremeUnctionHolyOrdersMatrimony#page/n149/mode/2up


The Catholic Enc., Sacrament of Marriage states:

"Therein is contained implicitly the doctrine that the persons contracting marriage are themselves the agents or ministers of the sacrament."

"it cannot be denied that the contracting parties in Christian marriage must be guided by ecclesiastical regulations, and cannot act otherwise than as ministers subject to the Church or dispensers of the sacrament."






Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/08/15 11:58 AM

Read, The "Sanatio in Radice" Before the Council of Trent, pgs. 81-83

Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/08/15 02:42 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"And the magisterium is all the bishops of the Catholic Church, East and West, in communion and teaching as one through the person of the bishop of Rome."

Magisterium (Lat. magister, a master): The Church's divinely appointed authority to teach the truths of religion, "Going therefore, teach ye all nations... teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you" (Matt. xxviii, 19-20). This teaching is infallible: "And behold I am with you all days, even to the consummation of the world" (ibid.). The solemn magisterium is that which is exercised only rarely by formal and authentic definitions of councils or popes. Its matter comprises dogmatic definitions of ecumenical councils or of the popes teaching ex cathedra, or of particular councils, if their decrees are universally accepted or approved in solemn form by the pope; also creeds and professions of faith put forward or solemnly approved by pope or ecumenical council. The ordinary magisterium is continually exercised by the Church especially in her universal practices connected with faith and morals, in the unanimous consent of the Fathers (q.v.) and theologians, in the decisions of Roman Congregations concerning faith and morals, in the common sense (q.v.) of the faithful, and various historical documents in which the faith is declared. All these are founts of a teaching,which as a whole is infallible. They have to be studied separately to determine how far and in what conditions each of them is an infallible source of truth.
Right, like I said just more succinctly.


Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"So this is a Catholic ceremony with the minimum need for validity: spouses, witnesses and who else? Must an approved ritual be used? Who conducts the ceremony?"

The Church reserves the right to permit the celebration of “secret marriages” or “clandestine marriages”, that is to say, marriages that are not recognized by the State in certain circumstances. Canons 1130 – 1133 of the Latin Code (and can. 840 of the Eastern Code) provide the parameters.

A secret marriage can only be permitted by the local ordinary (i.e., the diocesan bishop, vicar general, or an episcopal vicar), the parties involved must observe secrecy (only the priest, the couple, and two witnesses should be present at the wedding), and the marriage is recorded only in a special register in the secret archives of the diocesan curia.

http://wdtprs.com/blog/2014/01/ask-father-secret-marriage-to-avoid-government/
So a priest is to be present also.



Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"The issue of a clandestine marriage and here Canon Law does not address who is the minister(s) of marriage,"

The ministers of the sacrament itself is the couple. The priest merely serves as a witness to the marriage. That's why it doesn't mention who the ministers are.
Then it presumes some prior authority? Here is the problem with this whole issue: That which claims to be demonstrated is not; it is state as such
Quote
The ministers of the sacrament itself is the couple. The priest merely serves as a witness to the marriage.


with the conclusion that it then is so. This is the "I said it, therefore it is so" proof.

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"and the Summa is theological opinion or conjecture. In fact, there is no such de fide statement,"

See Ludwig Ott, Fundementals of Catholic Dogma, pg. 9-10 So according to Ott it is

That the spouses are the ministers of the sacrament of matrimony is sententia certa.
Don't have to consult Ott further, even he says it's sententia certa not de fide .



Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"So one may conclude then that the Byzantine, Eastern Church tradition has greater merit?"

No. The Catholic Church's stance has been that the spouses are the ministers of the sacrament. This is shown from Pope St. Leo XIII (Arcanum, 23-24), Pope St. Pius IX (Syllabus of Errors,
66), and any Catholic dogmatic treatise on matrimony. See for example Pohle-Preuss.

https://archive.org/stream/V11ExtremeUnctionHolyOrdersMatrimony#page/n149/mode/2up
"The Catholic Church's stance has been..." There is no problem with the agency of the couples, their consent being required, but there is in formulating a theology of what constitutes ministry and then showing it is exclusive to, in this case, the spouses.

Under what circumstances below does a valid marriage take place -- two Catholic spouses --

1) two spouses only present
2) two spouses and one lay witness
3) two spouses and priest or deacon


Originally Posted by RomCatholic
The Catholic Enc., Sacrament of Marriage states:

"Therein is contained implicitly the doctrine that the persons contracting marriage are themselves the agents or ministers of the sacrament."
The spouses are agents also in the Byzantine theology of marriage; their free consent is affirmed in the betrothal ceremony.

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"it cannot be denied that the contracting parties in Christian marriage must be guided by ecclesiastical regulations, and cannot act otherwise than as ministers subject to the Church or dispensers of the sacrament."
The spouses also in the Byzantine theology of marriage are "agents" or "ministers who are subject to the Church or dispensers of the sacrament."

"...Church or dispensers of the sacrament." What does this mean?

Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/08/15 02:52 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Read, The "Sanatio in Radice" Before the Council of Trent, pgs. 81-83
Give the pertinent information.
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/08/15 03:42 PM

"So a priest is to be present also."

As the current canon law stands, yes.

From The "Sanatio in Radice" Before the Council of Trent, pgs. 81-83

The term clandestine marriage had not always the same significance before the 16th century. Prior to the decree "Tametsi" of the Council of Trent, no form was prescribed for the valid celebration of matrimony. A couple intending marriage had merely to exchange a true matrimonial consent, manifested in some external way, in order to be thereafter man and wife. Neither the natural law nor Roman law required more than this; nor did the Church impose any special formalities as being necessary for validity. However, from the very beginning the Church insisted that the Faithful should not contract this sacrament without her intervention nor embark on the married life without her blessing. While clandestine marriages stood condemned, no uniform method of contracting a legitimate marriage was enforced throughout Christendom... A clandestine marriage before the year 1215 had two meanings; it signified either a marriage contracted by a couple without any witnesses at all, or a marriage not contracted in facie ecclesiae as explained above, although contracted in the presence of a few selected witnesses. After the fourth Lateran Council, the term took on a third meaning. In this Council, Innocent III introduced for the Universal Church what had previously been a local custom of the diocese of Beauvais, namely the proclamation of the banns. From that date on, a marriage celebrated without the banns having been proclaimed was considered a clandestine marriage, even though the couple had exchanged their consent in the presence of a priest.



The Council of Trent, to prevent Clandestine Marriages, required that all Marriages should be solemnised by a priest in the presence of two witnesses, but it considered clandestine marriages to be vlid, until annulled by the Decree of that Council where it should be received.

https://books.google.com/books?id=E...iages%20council%20of%20trent&f=false


" Don't have to consult Ott further, even he says it's sententia certa not de fide."

Which is exactly what I said above. I never claimed it to be official dogma. But it doesn't have to be, since the Church has repeatedly stated that it is the *spouses* who confer the sacrament to each other, and not the priest.


"There is no problem with the agency of the couples, their consent being required, but there is in formulating a theology of what constitutes ministry and then showing it is exclusive to, in this case, the spouses."

Marriage is a contract, and the essence of a contract (i.e., that which makes it a contract) is the consent of the parties. Since marriage between Christians and the Sacrament of Matrimony are one and the same thing, the essence of the sacrament must be the same, i.e., the consent of the parties. From this it follows that the betrothed are the ministers of the sacrament.

The blessing of the priest may be made a necessary condition for canonical validity, but this does not imply that the blessing is the essence or even the efficient cause of the sacrament. Earth and sky may be necessary conditions for a horse's existence, but they are not what makes a horse a horse, nor do they cause the horse to be. Likewise, the execution of a contract may require certain conditions, such as the presence of witnesses or a notary, but the essence of the contract remains the consent of the parties who thereby bring it into effect.

The modern Orthodox may find it scandalous to speak of the Sacrament of Matrimony in such worldly, juridical terms. Yet to refrain from this is to ignore in this case that Christ has the power to sanctify the earthly, not by adding something alien to it, but by operating within its essence.


"Under what circumstances below does a valid marriage take place -- two Catholic spouses --

1) two spouses only present
2) two spouses and one lay witness
3) two spouses and priest or deacon"

For canonical validity, read the code of canon law on clandestine marriages.


"The spouses are agents also in the Byzantine theology of marriage; their free consent is affirmed in the betrothal ceremony."

According to Eastern theology, the priest confers the sacrament through his blessing. This is in direct opposition to Latin theology on matrimony.


"The spouses also in the Byzantine theology of marriage are "agents" or "ministers who are subject to the Church or dispensers of the sacrament."

"...Church or dispensers of the sacrament." What does this mean?"

It means that the spouses are the ministers (or dispenses) of the sacrament.




Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/08/15 04:13 PM

According to Pohle-Pruess

The Council of Trent recognized the validity of clandestine marriagescontracted in places where the "Tametsi" had not been promulgated. By a clandestine marriage we understand one contracted secretly without the cooperation of the pastor and the required witnesses. The Council says that all such marriages, when freely contracted where the "Tametsi" is not published, are "rata et vera" unless formally nullified by the Church. Note that, according to Tridentine as well as present-day usage, a legitimate marriage among Christians is always a Sacrament, whether blessed by a priest or not.

...

The contracting parties to a marriage administer the Sacrament to each other. The priest is merely the minister of the (accidental) celebration and the representative and chief official witness of the Church. This explains why his presence is prescribed by ecclesiastical law.

a) That the contracting parties administer the Sacrament to each other is evident from the fact that contract and Sacrament coincide and that both the matter and the form of Matrimony are contained in the contract.

Contract and Sacrament being identical, he who makes the contract eo ipso administers the Sacrament. Again, as matter and form of the Sacrament are contained in the contract, whoever furnishes the matter and form, effects the Sacrament. It is the express teaching of the Church that the Sacrament of Matrimony is effected solely 3 by the mutual consent of the contracting parties. Consequently the contracting parties are the sole ministers of the Sacrament. It is on this assumption that the Tridentine Council declared clandestine marriages (i.e. marriages performed without a priest and the required witnesses) to be vera et sacra, provided the Church does not enjoin a special form of celebration as a condition of validity.

Berlage's opinion that the priest is the ordinary, whilst the contracting parties are the extraordinary ministers of the Sacrament, is untenable, (1) because the form of a Sacrament can not be arbitrarily changed, and (2) because Nicholas I and Innocent III have expressly declared that the only thing required for the validity of marriage, and hence of the Sacrament, is the consent of the contracting parties. Very properly, therefore, is Matrimony called "the lay Sacrament."

b) If, as we have seen, the sacramental form of marriage does not consist in the benediction given by the priest, the priest cannot be the minister of the Sacrament.

How, then, are we to regard the part which he takes in the celebration of marriage?

(1) The priest is the official representative of the Church, to whose external forum Christian marriage belongs on account of its juridical effects ;

(2) He is the official chief witness (testis autoriza- bilis), upon whose presence, since the Council of Trent, both the licitness and the validity of marriage ordinarily depend;

(3) He is the (sole) minister of the solemn ceremonies with which the Church surrounds marriage, not only the ecclesiastical recognition (solemnizatio matrimonii), which he expresses in saying, "I join you together in Matrimony but also the nuptial blessing, which is one of the Church's most beautiful and significant sacramentals.


======

Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/08/15 09:18 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"So a priest is to be present also."

As the current canon law stands, yes.

From The "Sanatio in Radice" Before the Council of Trent, pgs. 81-83

... However, from the very beginning the Church insisted that the Faithful should not contract this sacrament without her intervention nor embark on the married life without her blessing.
This clearly says more than the ministry of the spouses is required.

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
According to Pohle-Pruess......
(3) He is the (sole) minister of the solemn ceremonies with which the Church surrounds marriage, not only the ecclesiastical recognition (solemnizatio matrimonii), which he expresses in saying, "I join you together in Matrimony but also the nuptial blessing, which is one of the Church's most beautiful and significant sacramentals.

Reading this, the entire post, there are differences of opinion that are discussed and dismissed but they are still there. If it is the thrust of Latin theology that the spouses are the sole ministers (by some criterion in some sort of differentiating of ministry) of the sacrament of matrimony then that is merely a generally accepted theological conclusion at best. It is clear in just this quote that the intention is that the sacrament is ultimately the ministry of Christ and therefore the ministry of the Church, Ephesians 5:32.

To refocus the discussion then, what is the most authoritative statement of the East and of the West concerning the ministry of the sacrament of marriage that would put them at odds?
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/08/15 09:40 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
According to Pohle-Pruess

The Council of Trent recognized the validity of clandestine marriages contracted in places where the "Tametsi" had not been promulgated. By a clandestine marriage we understand one contracted secretly without the cooperation of the pastor and the required witnesses...
What is said here? No pastor but how about some other priest? Or no priest or representative of the Church present at all? No two witnesses but what if only one witness or no witnesses? is it a sacramental marriage then with just the two spouses present and officiating?
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/08/15 09:52 PM

In the teaching of our churches, a sacramental marriage requires both the mutual consent of the believing Christian partners and God's blessing imparted through the official ministry of the Church. At the present time, there are differences in the ways by which this ministry is exercised in order to fulfill the theological and canonical norms for marriage in our churches. The Orthodox Church, as a rule, accepts as sacramental only those marriages of Christians baptized in the name of the Holy Trinity which are sanctified in the Church's liturgy through the blessing of an Orthodox bishop or priest. The Catholic Church accepts as sacramental those marriages of Christians baptized in the name of the Holy Trinity which are witnessed by a Catholic bishop or priest (or, in more recent discipline, a deacon), but it also envisages some exceptional cases in which, whether by law or by dispensation, Catholics may enter into a sacramental marriage in the absence of a bishop, priest or deacon. There are also differences in our theological explanations of this diversity. As older presentations of sacramental theology indicate, Orthodox theologians often have insisted that the priest is the proper "minister of the Sacrament", whereas Roman Catholic theologians more often have spoken of the couple as "ministering the sacrament to each other".

http://www.usccb.org/beliefs-and-te.../pastoral-orthodox-catholic-marriage.cfm
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/08/15 10:09 PM

"It is the *express teaching* of the Church that the Sacrament of Matrimony is effected *solely* by the mutual consent of the contracting parties. Consequently the contracting parties are the *sole* ministers of the Sacrament. It is on this assumption that the Tridentine Council declared clandestine marriages (i.e. marriages performed without a priest and the required witnesses) to be vera et sacra, *provided the Church does not enjoin a special form of celebration as a condition of validity*.

Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/08/15 10:26 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
In the teaching of our churches, a sacramental marriage requires both the mutual consent of the believing Christian partners and God's blessing imparted through the official ministry of the Church. At the present time, there are differences in the ways by which this ministry is exercised in order to fulfill the theological and canonical norms for marriage in our churches. The Orthodox Church, as a rule, accepts as sacramental only those marriages of Christians baptized in the name of the Holy Trinity which are sanctified in the Church's liturgy through the blessing of an Orthodox bishop or priest. The Catholic Church accepts as sacramental those marriages of Christians baptized in the name of the Holy Trinity which are witnessed by a Catholic bishop or priest (or, in more recent discipline, a deacon), but it also envisages some exceptional cases in which, whether by law or by dispensation, Catholics may enter into a sacramental marriage in the absence of a bishop, priest or deacon. There are also differences in our theological explanations of this diversity. As older presentations of sacramental theology indicate, Orthodox theologians often have insisted that the priest is the proper "minister of the Sacrament", whereas Roman Catholic theologians more often have spoken of the couple as "ministering the sacrament to each other".

http://www.usccb.org/beliefs-and-te.../pastoral-orthodox-catholic-marriage.cfm
Good quote don't you think? It would be nice if it went the distance and reconciled Catholic East and West explicitly in the way the CCC does in good part.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/08/15 10:48 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"It is the *express teaching* of the Church that the Sacrament of Matrimony is effected *solely* by the mutual consent of the contracting parties. Consequently the contracting parties are the *sole* ministers of the Sacrament. It is on this assumption that the Tridentine Council declared clandestine marriages (i.e. marriages performed without a priest and the required witnesses) to be vera et sacra, *provided the Church does not enjoin a special form of celebration as a condition of validity*.
You quote but give no source. Pohle? What, words and reference, is the express teaching mentioned? So it is an *express teaching* that is nevertheless an "assumption" leading to a "vera et sacra" true and sacred marriage provided... This is a lot of qualifications with an assumption from which to be implying certainty.
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/08/15 11:15 PM

Yes, it is Pohle-Preuss.

"What, words and reference, is the express teaching mentioned?"

Pope Leo XIII (Arcanum, 23)

"A distinction, or rather severance, of this kind cannot be approved; for certain it is that in Christian marriage the contract is inseparable from the sacrament, and that, for this reason, the contract cannot be true and legitimate without being a sacrament as well. For Christ our Lord added to marriage the dignity of a sacrament; but marriage is the contract itself, whenever that contract is lawfully concluded."

Furthermore, that the priestly blessing is not an absolute requirement of true marriage between Christians is proved by the Council of Trent's toleration of past clandestine marriages.

Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/10/15 10:02 AM

Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"It is the *express teaching* of the Church that the Sacrament of Matrimony is effected *solely* by the mutual consent of the contracting parties. Consequently the contracting parties are the *sole* ministers of the Sacrament. It is on this assumption that the Tridentine Council declared clandestine marriages (i.e. marriages performed without a priest and the required witnesses) to be vera et sacra, *provided the Church does not enjoin a special form of celebration as a condition of validity*.
You quote but give no source. Pohle? What, words and reference, is the express teaching mentioned? So it is an *express teaching* that is nevertheless an "assumption" leading to a "vera et sacra" true and sacred marriage provided... This is a lot of qualifications with an assumption from which to be implying certainty.

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Yes, it is Pohle-Preuss.


One reads the quote and the words resonate with such authority that it seems the case is closed. It is of course just a dogmatic theologian speaking very dogmatically. He makes his case well but there are any number of places in it where questions, objections and caveats can be raised and where he dismisses opposing views (they exist from western theologians) as the thrust of his arguments crescendos to his conclusion.

In reading just the fuller immediate context of the quote one of the problems I find with his approach is that it takes a deductive, circumstantial evidentiary approach dealing with specific issues that removes the topic, what is the sacrament of marriage, from its intrinsic roots: the prayer life of the Church, spirituality, scripture, liturgy. His approach is very academic, and that's ok as far as it goes, but it is incomplete and, consequently, to me somewhat stilted. Theological expression has moved on and rightfully so.

This is a bit sketchy but I intend to post more on this and what I mean. But he has exceed and misrepresented the current state of understanding in saying "It is the *express teaching* of the Church that the Sacrament of Matrimony is effected *solely* by the mutual consent of the contracting parties."

Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/10/15 10:14 AM

You seem to overlook the evidence that Pohle-Preuss cites in support of this claim. One of which is the explicit statement made by Pope St. Leo XII.

"But he has exceed and misrepresented the current state of understanding"

That would be up to you to prove.
Posted By: johnzonaras

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/10/15 10:25 AM

Neil, sorry to be off message. Did u get the message sent you here? Sorry to interrupt this flow of replies.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/10/15 11:17 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
You seem to overlook the evidence that Pole-Preuss cites in support of this claim. One of which is the explicit statement made by Pope St. Leo XII.
What is the "explicit statement"? St. ?? Leo XII ???

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"But he has exceed and misrepresented the current state of understanding"

That would be up to you to prove.
That sentence didn't come out quite as intended. Since he's dead he's not misrepresenting anything current(ly). So I restate: He has overstated the certitude of the teaching at his time and what he states as definitive does not represent the current teaching and understanding.

If the teaching were so explicit he would not have to be arguing against the view of other Catholic theologians as he does. His certitude is not supported by the USCCB statement:
Quote
In the teaching of our churches, a sacramental marriage requires both the mutual consent of the believing Christian partners and God's blessing imparted through the official ministry of the Church... The Catholic Church accepts as sacramental those marriages of Christians baptized in the name of the Holy Trinity which are witnessed by a Catholic bishop or priest (or, in more recent discipline, a deacon), but it also envisages some exceptional cases in which, whether by law or by dispensation, Catholics may enter into a sacramental marriage in the absence of a bishop, priest or deacon... As older presentations of sacramental theology indicate, ... Roman Catholic theologians more often have spoken of the couple as "ministering the sacrament to each other." [emphasis added]
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/10/15 11:30 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"It is the *express teaching* of the Church that the Sacrament of Matrimony is effected *solely* by the mutual consent of the contracting parties. Consequently the contracting parties are the *sole* ministers of the Sacrament. It is on this assumption that the Tridentine Council declared clandestine marriages (i.e. marriages performed without a priest and the required witnesses) to be vera et sacra, *provided the Church does not enjoin a special form of celebration as a condition of validity*.
"vera et sacra." True and sacred. Valid and holy. Does "vera et sacra" = sacramental?
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/10/15 12:17 PM

"What is the "explicit statement"? St. ?? Leo XII ???"

That would be Pope St. Leo XIII (Arcanum, 23)

"A distinction, or rather severance, of this kind cannot be approved; for certain it is that in Christian marriage the contract is inseparable from the sacrament, and that, for this reason, the contract cannot be true and legitimate without being a sacrament as well. For Christ our Lord added to marriage the dignity of a sacrament; but marriage is the contract itself, whenever that contract is lawfully concluded."


"He has overstated the certitude of the teaching at his time and what he states as definitive does not represent the current teaching and understanding."

This is what I thought you meant in the first place. All the evidence suggests that Pohle-Preus is not over-exaggerating when they say it is the "express teaching" of the Church.


"His certitude is not supported by the USCCB statement"

Well, let us analyze the parts which you believe support your contention.

"a sacramental marriage requires both the mutual consent of the believing Christian partners and God's blessing imparted through the official ministry of the Church."

As the current code of canon law requires, yes. Catholics are required to get married in the Church, except in the case of mixed marriages, which requires a dispensation. However, the fact that the blessing of the priest is not an absolute requirement is shown by Church's acceptance of all Christian marriages as being sacramental. Pohle-Preuss states: Every marriage between Christians is a true Sacrament; consequently contract and Sacrament coincide.


"As older presentations of sacramental theology indicate,"

Since this statement applies to both Catholic and Orthodox formulations.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/10/15 03:51 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"He has overstated the certitude of the teaching at his time and what he states as definitive does not represent the current teaching and understanding."

This is what I thought you meant in the first place. All the evidence suggests that Pohle-Preus is not over-exaggerating when they say it is the "express teaching" of the Church.


Do you really mean "All"? No evidence or opinion to the contrary?


Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"His certitude is not supported by the USCCB statement"

Well, let us analyze the parts which you believe support your contention.

"a sacramental marriage requires both the mutual consent of the believing Christian partners and God's blessing imparted through the official ministry of the Church."

As the current code of canon law requires, yes. Catholics are required to get married in the Church, except in the case of mixed marriages, which requires a dispensation. However, the

fact that the blessing of the priest is not an absolute requirement is shown by Church's acceptance of all Christian marriages as being sacramental.


Yes "let us analyze the parts":

Pohle-Preuss: It is the *express teaching* of the Church that the Sacrament of Matrimony is effected *solely* by the mutual consent of the contracting parties.
USCCB: "God's blessing imparted through the official ministry of the Church" is required. [emphasis added]


Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Pohle-Preuss states: Every marriage between Christians is a true Sacrament; consequently contract and Sacrament coincide.
Yes, Pohle-Preuss states and not, the Church states. Furthermore, "consequently contract and Sacrament coincide" is a sweeping statement that does not automatically follow given the limited context.



Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"As older presentations of sacramental theology indicate,"

Since this statement applies to both Catholic and Orthodox formulations, I fail to see how you came to the conclusion that anything has changed.
It says it is an older, not a current, approach. As you say "Since this statement applies to both Catholic and Orthodox formulations" it applies to Pohle-Preuss. Since it does apply to both, it applies to 1) "Roman Catholic theologians" and not the Catholic Church; and 2) we are here in this focus examining the words, method and conclusions of Pohle-Preuss and not the Orthodox.
Posted By: theophan

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/10/15 06:59 PM

RomCatholic:

Christ is in our midst!!

What do your posts in this seven-year-old thread have to do with the Eastern Churches and their theology and praxis?

I don't think you have read the thread in Town Hall outlining who we are on this forum. What we are not is here to learn about Latin theology and praxis per se.

Please go to Town Hall and read the thread I mentioned.

Bob
Moderator
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/10/15 07:45 PM

"That is the purpose of this forum: to improve our knowledge of one another."



Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/10/15 08:03 PM

"Do you really mean "All"? No evidence or opinion to the contrary?"

Asking a rhetorical question, doesn't equate to an actual argument.


"USCCB: "God's blessing imparted through the official ministry of the Church" is required. [emphasis added]"

As I already stated above, this pertains to Catholics. The fact is, the Church accepts as sacramental all marriages contracted by Christians.


"Furthermore, "consequently contract and Sacrament coincide" is a sweeping statement that does not automatically follow given the limited context."

Yes, it does logically follow. Since marriage between Christians and the Sacrament of Matrimony are one and the same thing, the essence of the sacrament must be the same, i.e., the consent of the parties. From this it follows that the betrothed are the ministers of the sacrament.


"As you say "Since this statement applies to both Catholic and Orthodox formulations" it applies to Pohle-Preuss."

Your response indicates that you didn't understand my comment. Since the statement refers to the formulations of *both* Catholic and Orthodox theologians, why should we expect that either of our respective traditions have changed? Can you provide any evidence which would suggest that the Latin Catholic Church has altered its position?
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/11/15 01:32 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"Do you really mean "All"? No evidence or opinion to the contrary?"

Asking a rhetorical question, doesn't equate to an actual argument.
It's not a rhetorical question. As does Pohle-Preuss you make sweeping statements that are unsupported and then go on as though the matter is settled. This is an example.


Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"USCCB: "God's blessing imparted through the official ministry of the Church" is required. [emphasis added]"

As I already stated above, this pertains to Catholics. The fact is, the Church accepts as sacramental all marriages contracted by Christians.
The qualification is yours; it is not in the USCCB teaching.


Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"Furthermore, "consequently contract and Sacrament coincide" is a sweeping statement that does not automatically follow given the limited context."

Yes, it does logically follow. Since marriage between Christians and the Sacrament of Matrimony are one and the same thing, the essence of the sacrament must be the same, i.e., the consent of the parties.
Here is the problem with your approach, you only just keep repeating the part you like, that supports the old understanding. Note the difference in the USCCB teaching: "a sacramental marriage requires both the mutual consent of the believing Christian partners" as you keep saying but also "and God's blessing imparted through the official ministry of the Church."

Is not 'God's blessing" essential to a marriage that is a sacrament?


Originally Posted by RomCatholic
From this it follows that the betrothed are the ministers of the sacrament.
So then this doesn't necessarily follow.


Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"As you say "Since this statement applies to both Catholic and Orthodox formulations" it applies to Pohle-Preuss."

Your response indicates that you didn't understand my comment. Since the statement refers to the formulations of *both* Catholic and Orthodox theologians, why should we expect that either of our respective traditions have changed? Can you provide any evidence which would suggest that the Latin Catholic Church has altered its position?
I don't know about the Orthodox position; I'm not Orthodox and don't answer as or for the Orthodox.

You should realize that this dialogue is not about who Orthodox consider to be the "minister" of marriage but about the specific and well-argued claims of Catholic theologians that are not automatically the teaching of the Catholic Church. Part of the issue may be what is meant by "minister" of the sacrament. Another is that the term "contract" may have implied understandings from which conclusions follow automatically for some. I think reformulating the theology and pronouncements on marriage in terms of marriage as a covenant would be beneficial.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/11/15 02:02 AM

Originally Posted by theophan
RomCatholic:

Christ is in our midst!!

What do your posts in this seven-year-old thread have to do with the Eastern Churches and their theology and praxis?

I don't think you have read the thread in Town Hall outlining who we are on this forum. What we are not is here to learn about Latin theology and praxis per se.

Please go to Town Hall and read the thread I mentioned.

Bob
Moderator


Bob,

He is and shall be.

I see this is addressed only to RomCatholic but I have been in detailed and fruitful dialog with him here. Old threads find new life. This thread's subject is a concern of Eastern Catholic, Orthodox and Western Catholics and is treated in part in A Pastoral Statement on Orthodox/Roman Catholic Marriages The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) .

In XP,
Deacon Anthony

Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/11/15 03:04 AM

"As does Pohle-Preuss you make sweeping statements that are unsupported and then go on as though the matter is settled. This is an example."

Yes, *all* the evidence suggests that the Pohle-Preuss is not over-exaggerating. It would be up to you to provide counter evidence.

"The qualification is yours; it is not in the USCCB teaching."

The Church accepts as sacramental all true marriages contracted by Christians. This is proven from the fact that we don't require non-Catholic Christians who are entering the Church to renew their vows, or to receive a blessing from the priest.

"Is not 'God's blessing" essential to a marriage that is a sacrament?"

The priest's blessing is not an essential part of the sacrament. The priests blessing is merely a sacramental; it does not confer grace.


"about the specific and well-argued claims of Catholic theologians that are not automatically the teaching of the Catholic Church."

Well, let me provide you with at least some to the evidence that come from the Popes

Pope St. Nicholas I in a letter to Boris I of Bulgaria stated that consent of the couple was sufficient enough for the marriage to be considered valid (that is, sacramental).

ac per hoc sufficiat secundum leges solus eorum consensus, de quorum coniunctionibus agitur


Pope Alexander III taught that the consent of the spouses was what made a marriage, and not the ceremony or the blessing of the priest. https://books.google.com/books?id=F...xander%20iii%20on%20marriage&f=false

Pope Innocent III likewise taught the same. https://books.google.com/books?id=d...%20innocent%20iii%20marriage&f=false


Pope St. Leo XIII (Arcanum, 23)

"A distinction, or rather severance, of this kind cannot be approved; for certain it is that in Christian marriage the contract is inseparable from the sacrament, and that, for this reason, the contract cannot be true and legitimate without being a sacrament as well. For Christ our Lord added to marriage the dignity of a sacrament; but marriage is the contract itself, whenever that contract is lawfully concluded."
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/11/15 09:35 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"As does Pohle-Preuss you make sweeping statements that are unsupported and then go on as though the matter is settled. This is an example."

Yes, *all* the evidence suggests that the Pohle-Preuss is not over-exaggerating. It would be up to you to provide counter evidence.
Even Pohle-Preuss gives opposing views of Catholic theologians that are dismissed but they are still opposing views. So saying "All" is incorrect and misleading.

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"Is not 'God's blessing" essential to a marriage that is a sacrament?"

The priest's blessing is not an essential part of the sacrament. The priests blessing is merely a sacramental; it does not confer grace.
This doesn't answer the question which does not ask about the role of the priest. Does Pohle-Preuss speak about "God's blessing" as does the USCCB's "a sacramental marriage requires both the mutual consent of the believing Christian partners and God's blessing imparted through the official ministry of the Church"? [emphasis added]


Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"about the specific and well-argued claims of Catholic theologians that are not automatically the teaching of the Catholic Church."

Well, let me provide you with at least some to the evidence that come from the Popes

Pope St. Nicholas I in a letter to Boris I of Bulgaria stated that consent of the couple was sufficient enough for the marriage to be considered valid (that is, sacramental).

ac per hoc sufficiat secundum leges solus eorum consensus, de quorum coniunctionibus agitur
Does this exclude then the necessity also of " God's blessing imparted through the official ministry of the Church."

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Pope St. Leo XIII (Arcanum, 23)

"A distinction, or rather severance, of this kind cannot be approved; for certain it is that in Christian marriage the contract is inseparable from the sacrament, and that, for this reason, the contract cannot be true and legitimate without being a sacrament as well. For Christ our Lord added to marriage the dignity of a sacrament; but marriage is the contract itself, whenever that contract is lawfully concluded."
This says in the context, against those that would separate the civil and religious aspects of marriage into two domains, that there is a unity in the sacrament, that it cannot be separated into these parts. There can only be one, unified celebration of marriage. The "contract" is "true and legitimate" only in that it is a sacrament "For Christ our Lord added to marriage the dignity of a sacrament" [emphasis added]. Does not "marriage is the contract itself, whenever that contract is lawfully concluded" apply to non-christians?
Posted By: theophan

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/11/15 01:19 PM

Quote
"That is the purpose of this forum: to improve our knowledge of one another."



"One another" means the Eastern Churches--learning about the Eastern Churches, their theology, and their praxis. It does not mean we need a heavy dose of Latin theology and praxis.

Bob
Moderator
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/11/15 06:59 PM


"One another" means the Eastern Churches--learning about the Eastern Churches, their theology, and their praxis. It does not mean we need a heavy dose of Latin theology and praxis.

Since the sub-forum is titled "The Christian East & West," I fail to see how I am acting outside the confines of the forum rules.
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/11/15 07:22 PM

" Even Pohle-Preuss gives opposing views of Catholic theologians that are dismissed but they are still opposing views. So saying "All" is incorrect and misleading."

Theologians who have opposing views does not constitute as counter evidence. What constitutes as evidence is 1) official documents of the Church, 2) personal letters form Popes, and 3) patristic sources.

All the evidence which I am aware of, demonstrates that the blessing of the priest is non-essential to the Sacrament.


""a sacramental marriage requires both the mutual consent of the believing Christian partners and God's blessing imparted through the official ministry of the Church"?"

For canonical validity, a priest must preside over a wedding. I have already stated this.


"Does this exclude then the necessity also of " God's blessing imparted through the official ministry of the Church."

What it demonstrates is that the priestly blessing does not confer the Sacrament.


"Does not "marriage is the contract itself, whenever that contract is lawfully concluded" apply to non-christians?"

The Pope is specifically referring to Christian marriages. What he is saying is that in Christian marriages, the contract and the Sacrament cannot be separated into two spheres; since marriage between Christians and the Sacrament of Matrimony are one and the same thing. Thus, the essence of the sacrament must be the same, i.e., the consent of the parties. From this it follows that the betrothed are the ministers of the sacrament.


Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/12/15 09:23 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
" Even Pohle-Preuss gives opposing views of Catholic theologians that are dismissed but they are still opposing views. So saying "All" is incorrect and misleading."

Theologians who have opposing views does not constitute as counter evidence. What constitutes as evidence is 1) official documents of the Church, 2) personal letters form Popes, and 3) patristic sources.

Pohle-Preuss interpret 1-3 and reach their conclusion and dismiss the opposing conclusion of theologian(s) who also interpret the 1-3 with a different conclusion. If the teaching were an "express" = "clearly indicated; distinctly stated; definite; explicit; plain" link "teaching" why isn't it just quoted from where it occurs in 1-3?
Originally Posted by RomCatholic quoting Pohle-Preuss
"It is the *express teaching* of the Church that the Sacrament of Matrimony is effected *solely* by the mutual consent of the contracting parties.


The issue is the "solely," how it is to be understood.

Also missing from the 1-3 list is an importance source, the liturgical, prayer, actually lived and experienced faith of the Church and the believer. This is a criticism of the older Catholic approaches and compilations of Catholic theology. This is not to invalidate those very academic, propositional, didactic compilations only to say they can give the wrong emphasis and would benefit by some explicit spiritual and liturgical expression. Lex orandi, lex credendi.

More on this to follow.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/12/15 09:35 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic

""a sacramental marriage requires both the mutual consent of the believing Christian partners and God's blessing imparted through the official ministry of the Church"?"

For canonical validity, a priest must preside over a wedding. I have already stated this.
Yes you have stated that but its not the point here. It says "sacramental marriage...of the believing Christian partners." It says "Christian" not Catholic and explicitly "believing Christian."

1.) Is the common law marriage of two believing non-Catholic Christians a sacrament?

2.) Is the common law marriage of two non-believing non-Catholic Christians a sacrament?

Christian here = validly baptized
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/12/15 08:01 PM

"Pohle-Preuss interpret 1-3 and reach their conclusion and dismiss the opposing conclusion of theologian(s) who also interpret the 1-3 with a different conclusion."

Most of the theologians cited lived somewhere in between the 16-18th centuries. You won't find a single Catholic theologian today who claims that the sacrament of matrimony is conferred by the priest's blessing.

You have yet to deal with the evidence they cite in support of their position; namely, the Council of Trent, the Syllabus of Erros 66, and Arcanum 23.


"The issue is the "solely," how it is to be understood."

It means that the priest does not confer the sacrament.


"It says "Christian" not Catholic and explicitly "believing Christian.""

Since the pastoral letter is dealing specifically with Catholic/Orthodox marriages, that should answer your question. But if it doesn't, then I will ask you a question. Since when do protestants receive God's blessing through the ministry of the Church?


"1.) Is the common law marriage of two believing non-Catholic Christians a sacrament?"

As long as they fulfill the four requirements below.


"2.) Is the common law marriage of two non-believing non-Catholic Christians a sacrament?"

The contracting parties are not only the ministers, they are also the recipients of the Sacrament.
The conditions of valid reception are four:
(1) The recipients must be baptized
(2) They must be of different sex;
(3) There must be no diriment impediment in the way of their marriage;
(4) They must have the intention of doing what the Church does, i. e. contracting a Christian marriage.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/12/15 10:43 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"Pohle-Preuss interpret 1-3 and reach their conclusion and dismiss the opposing conclusion of theologian(s) who also interpret the 1-3 with a different conclusion."

Most of the theologians cited lived somewhere in between the 16-18th centuries. You won't find a single Catholic theologian today who claims that the sacrament of matrimony is conferred by the priest's blessing.
You have this hang-up about the priest's blessing. I've not mentioned the priest's blessing.

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
You have yet to deal with the evidence they cite in support of their position; namely, the Council of Trent, the Syllabus of Erros 66, and Arcanum 23.
I did with Arcanum explicitly; they are all non explicit statements from which conclusions are inferred.

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"The issue is the "solely," how it is to be understood."

It means that the priest does not confer the sacrament.
Not only the priest.


Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"It says "Christian" not Catholic and explicitly "believing Christian.""

Since the pastoral letter is dealing specifically with Catholic/Orthodox marriages, that should answer your question.
It does. It says Christian, "believing Christian." Read on in the document; it has no problem with being more specific.

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
But if it doesn't, then I will ask you a question. Since when do protestants receive God's blessing through the ministry of the Church?
Who else dispenses the sacraments?
Quote
CCC 1131 The sacraments are efficacious signs of grace, instituted by Christ and entrusted to the Church, by which divine life is dispensed to us.[emphasis added]
Extra Ecclesiam nulla salus.


Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"1.) Is the common law marriage of two believing non-Catholic Christians a sacrament?"

As long as they fulfill the four requirements below.


"2.) Is the common law marriage of two non-believing non-Catholic Christians a sacrament?"

The contracting parties are not only the ministers, they are also the recipients of the Sacrament.
The conditions of valid reception are four:
(1) The recipients must be baptized
(2) They must be of different sex;
(3) There must be no diriment impediment in the way of their marriage;
(4) They must have the intention of doing what the Church does, i. e. contracting a Christian marriage.
So yes for both 1.) and 2.) if the four conditions obtain?
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/12/15 11:35 PM

"You have this hang-up about the priest's blessing. I've not mentioned the priest's blessing."

What do you suppose the statement, "God's blessing imparted through the official ministry of the Church" means; if not the priest's blessing?


"I did with Arcanum explicitly; they are all non explicit statements from which conclusions are inferred."

It is the only possible conclusion.


"It does. It says Christian, "believing Christian." Read on in the document; it has no problem with being more specific."

It is specifically referring to Catholics and Orthodox. I don't want to have to explain this again.

"At the present time, there are differences in the ways by which this ministry is exercised in order to fulfill the theological and *canonical norms* for marriage in ***our churches***."

"The Catholic Church accepts as sacramental those marriages of Christians baptized in the name of the Holy Trinity which are ***witnessed by a Catholic bishop or priest*** (or, in more recent discipline, a deacon), but it also envisages some exceptional cases in which, whether by law or by dispensation, ***Catholics*** may enter into a sacramental marriage in the absence of a bishop, priest or deacon."


They specifically put "believing Christian" because it affects whether the marriage is sacramental or not, since those contracting a marriage must have the intention of doing what the Church does, i.e. contracting a *Christian* marriage.


"Who else dispenses the sacraments?"

You clearly misunderstood what I wrote; so let me rephrase it. How do non-Catholics receive the blessing of the Church when they get married; especially if they don't belong to the Church? You don't suppose protestants belong to true churches, do you?


"Extra Ecclesiam nulla salus."

Are you trying to say that non-Catholics/Orthodox don't have valid sacraments such as baptism and marriage? The Council of Trent had this to say,

CANON IV.-If any one saith, that the baptism which is even given by heretics in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, with the intention of doing what the Church doth, is not true baptism; let him be anathema.


"So yes for both 1.) and 2.) if the four conditions obtain?"

I would say no for #2, since they don't intend on contracting a Christian marriage.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/13/15 12:17 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"You have this hang-up about the priest's blessing. I've not mentioned the priest's blessing."

What do you suppose the statement, "God's blessing imparted through the official ministry of the Church" means; if not the priest's blessing?
It's a matter of focus, close reading (exegesis) and logic.

The focus:

Quote
"It is the *express teaching* of the Church that the Sacrament of Matrimony is effected *solely* by the mutual consent of the contracting parties.


The close reading:

1.) It is NOT an express (="clearly indicated; distinctly stated; definite; explicit; plain") teaching.

2.)"solely" means "not involving anyone or anything else" to the exclusion of ALL others not just the priest or "the priest's blessing."

The logic:

But OK as you say, making your rhetorical question a statement, "God's blessing imparted through the official ministry of the Church means... the priest's blessing." So the priest's blessing (in the specific case you cite) is the "official ministry of the Church" and is a necessary aspect of marriage as in the USCCB's
Quote
a sacramental marriage requires both the mutual consent of the believing Christian partners and God's blessing imparted through the official ministry of the Church.[emphasis added]
You have nullified Pohle-Preuss's "solely", therefore, it can't be an "express teaching."
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/13/15 12:27 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic

"Who else dispenses the sacraments?"

You clearly misunderstood what I wrote; so let me rephrase it. How do non-Catholics receive the blessing of the Church when they get married; especially if they don't belong to the Church? You don't suppose protestants belong to true churches, do you?
No.

"true churches"? The Catholic Church is "a Church of many churches" but there is only one true Church (singular).

So "How do non-Catholics receive the blessing of the Church when they get married; especially if they don't belong to the Church?"


Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"Extra Ecclesiam nulla salus."

Are you trying to say that non-Catholics/Orthodox don't have valid sacraments such as baptism and marriage? The Council of Trent had this to say...
Goodness, don't go on. Of course Extra Ecclesiam nulla salus doesn't mean what you've conjured up here.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/13/15 12:44 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"It does. It says Christian, "believing Christian." Read on in the document; it has no problem with being more specific."

It is specifically referring to Catholics and Orthodox. I don't want to have to explain this again.
That's because you can't explain it. I'll give you the Orthodox-Catholic context but as stated it is more general; if it were intended to be otherwise it should have been explicit.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/13/15 12:55 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic

"So yes for both 1.) and 2.) if the four conditions obtain?"

I would say no for #2, since they don't intend on contracting a Christian marriage.
I agree.

The four conditions you stated may satisfy canonists (and the Church) for case #1 but are wanting as informative applied theology.
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/13/15 08:28 AM

"is the "official ministry of the Church" and is a necessary aspect of marriage as in the USCCB's"

"At the present time, there are differences in the ways by which this ministry is exercised in order to fulfill the theological and ***canonical norms*** for marriage in ***our churches***."

"The Catholic Church accepts as sacramental those marriages of Christians baptized in the name of the Holy Trinity which are ***witnessed by a Catholic bishop or priest*** (or, in more recent discipline, a deacon), but it also envisages some exceptional cases in which, whether by law or by dispensation, ***Catholics*** may enter into a sacramental marriage in the absence of a bishop, priest or deacon."


Canonical norms require that ***Catholic*** weddings be witnessed by a priest. The Council of Trent required this, as well as two witnesses to prevent clandestine marriages.

As I stated before, "The blessing of the priest may be made a necessary condition for canonical validity, but this does not imply that the blessing is the essence or even the efficient cause of the sacrament. Earth and sky may be necessary conditions for a horse's existence, but they are not what makes a horse a horse, nor do they cause the horse to be. Likewise, the execution of a contract may require certain conditions, such as the presence of witnesses or a notary, but the essence of the contract remains the consent of the parties who thereby bring it into effect."


"You have nullified Pohle-Preuss's "solely", therefore, it can't be an "express teaching.""

No, I haven't. Nor has the USCCB.


""true churches"? The Catholic Church is "a Church of many churches" but there is only one true Church (singular)."

The Orthodox Church(es) are true churches in the secondary sense, insofar as they possess all 7 sacraments. Of course, there is but *one* true Church.


" Goodness, don't go on. Of course Extra Ecclesiam nulla salus doesn't mean what you've conjured up here."

So why exactly did you respond with: EENS?


"That's because you can't explain it. I'll give you the Orthodox-Catholic context but as stated it is more general; if it were intended to be otherwise it should have been explicit."

It is explicit. See the passages I cited above.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/13/15 10:07 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic

Canonical norms require that ***Catholic*** weddings be witnessed by a priest. The Council of Trent required this, as well as two witnesses to prevent clandestine marriages.

As I stated before, "The blessing of the priest may be made a necessary condition for canonical validity, but this does not imply that the blessing is the essence or even the efficient cause of the sacrament. Earth and sky may be necessary conditions for a horse's existence, but they are not what makes a horse a horse, nor do they cause the horse to be. Likewise, the execution of a contract may require certain conditions, such as the presence of witnesses or a notary, but the essence of the contract remains the consent of the parties who thereby bring it into effect."
Scholastic, metaphysical categories -- essence, form, matter, the Platonic horse -- are useful but they can be taken too far (as in some forms of neo-scholasticism). The sacraments are after all mysteries. Please, no more about horse, earth and sky. Canonists create canonical validity and it is then a category conveniently invoked to seemingly pigeonhole the role of the Church into a non-essential status. Once a theology owns the vocabulary it can create proofs to matches its conclusions at will.

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
So why exactly did you respond with: EENS?
Who dispenses the sacraments? Who is the ultimate minister of every sacrament?

In terms of what the Church desires for the ideal of the Christian marriage, is the common law marriage of two believing, validly baptized Christians the minimum for being a sacrament? What is the role of the Catholic Church in this sacramental marriage?
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/13/15 11:32 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic

It is explicit. See the passages I cited above.
Relative to the actual statement under consideration

Quote
a sacramental marriage requires both the mutual consent of the believing Christian partners and God's blessing imparted through the official ministry of the Church.[emphasis added]


those passages are somewhat oblique not explicit. But as I said I'll grant you the context. Also, what is meant by "official"?

So, what do you say of this:

Any sacramental marriage requires both the mutual consent of the believing, validly baptized (Christian) male and female partners (one each), no diriment impediment obtaining and God's blessing imparted through the ministry of the Church.

Also, the lack of faith of the minister does not invalidate the other sacraments; does it do so here in the case of marriage?
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/13/15 11:42 AM

"Scholastic, metaphysical categories -- essence, form, matter, the Platonic horse -- are useful but they can be taken too far (as in some forms of neo-scholasticism)."

Just as in the other sacraments certain things are essential to the sacrament, and if they are omitted there is no sacrament, while certain things belong to the solemnization of the sacrament, and if these be omitted the sacrament is nevertheless validly performed, although it is a sin to omit them; so, too, consent expressed in words of the present between persons lawfully qualified to contract makes a marriage, because these two conditions are essential to the sacrament; while all else belongs to the solemnization of the sacrament, as being done in order that the marriage may be more fittingly performed. Hence if these be omitted it is a true marriage, although the contracting parties sin, unless they have a lawful motive for being excused.

Reply to Objection 2. In penance our act, although essential to the sacrament, does not suffice for producing the proximate effect of the sacrament, namely forgiveness of sins, and consequently it is necessary that the act of the priest intervene in order that the sacrament be perfected. But in matrimony our acts are the sufficient cause for the production of the proximate effect, which is the marriage bond, because whoever has the right to dispose of himself can bind himself to another. Consequently the priest's blessing is not required for matrimony as being essential to the sacrament.
(S.T. Supplement, Q. 45, A. 5)


Catholic Encyclopedia:

As it is certain, therefore, ***from the point of view of the Church* that marriage as a sacrament is fulfilled only through the mutual consent of the contracting parties, it is a matter of secondary consideration, how and in what sense the matter and form of this sacrament are to be taken.


Who dispenses the sacraments? Who is the ultimate minister of every sacrament?

You still don't address what you meant by EENS.

For baptism, the priest (although this is not exclusive to him).
For Confirmation, the bishop, unless relegated to the priest.
For the Holy Eucharist, the priest.
For penance, the priest.
For Holy Orders, the bishop
For Marriage, the couple themselves.
For Extreme Unction, the priest.


"What is the role of the Catholic Church in this sacramental marriage?"

To be a witness to the marriage, as well as to impart God's blessing.


Therein is contained implicitly the doctrine that the persons contracting marriage are themselves the agents or ministers of the sacrament. However, it has been likewise emphasized that marriage must be contracted with the blessing of the priest and the approbation of the Church, for otherwise it would be a source not of Divine grace, but of malediction.

"The opinion of Canus finds but little support in the expressions of the Fathers or in papal letters, which state that marriage without the priest is declared unholy, wicked, or sacrilegious, that it does not bring the grace of God but provokes His wrath. This is nothing more than what the Council of Trent says in the chapter "Tametsi" (XXIV, i, de ref. Matr.), namely, that "the Holy Church of God has always detested and forbidden clandestine marriages". Such statements do not deny the sacramental character of marriage so contracted; but they do condemn as sacrilegious that reception of the sacrament which indeed lays open the source of grace, yet places an obstacle in the way of the sacrament's efficacy."
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/13/15 11:52 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic

"You have nullified Pohle-Preuss's "solely", therefore, it can't be an "express teaching.""

No, I haven't. Nor has the USCCB.


Originally Posted by RomCatholic quoting Pohle-Preuss
It is the *express teaching* of the Church that the Sacrament of Matrimony is effected *solely* by the mutual consent of the contracting parties.


Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Canonical norms require that ***Catholic*** weddings be witnessed by a priest.


Originally Posted by RomCatholic
As I stated before, "The blessing of the priest may be made a necessary condition for canonical validity,...
For the case where the blessing is "made a necessary condition" it cannot be said as does Pohle-Preuss "that the Sacrament of Matrimony is effected *solely* by the mutual consent of the contracting parties.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/13/15 01:03 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic

Who dispenses the sacraments? Who is the ultimate minister of every sacrament?

You still don't address what you meant by EENS.

For baptism, the priest (although this is not exclusive to him).
For Confirmation, the bishop, unless relegated to the priest.
For the Holy Eucharist, the priest.
For penance, the priest.
For Holy Orders, the bishop
For Marriage, the couple themselves.
For Extreme Unction, the priest.

What about Christ and the Church?


Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"What is the role of the Catholic Church in this sacramental marriage?"

To be a witness to the marriage, as well as to impart God's blessing.
Just to be sure of your answer, here is the question again in context:

Originally Posted by ajk
Who dispenses the sacraments? Who is the ultimate minister of every sacrament?

In terms of what the Church desires for the ideal of the Christian marriage, is the common law marriage of two believing, validly baptized Christians the minimum for being a sacrament? What is the role of the Catholic Church in this sacramental marriage?
This = "the common law marriage of..." Also, if you could answer the first question of the two.

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Therein is contained implicitly the doctrine that the persons contracting marriage are themselves the agents or ministers of the sacrament.
I have not said otherwise. Nor do those words exclude the agency of others also.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/13/15 02:13 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic

"1.) Is the common law marriage of two believing non-Catholic Christians a sacrament?"

As long as they fulfill the four requirements below.
...

The contracting parties are not only the ministers, they are also the recipients of the Sacrament.
The conditions of valid reception are four:
(1) The recipients must be baptized
(2) They must be of different sex;
(3) There must be no diriment impediment in the way of their marriage;
(4) They must have the intention of doing what the Church does, i. e. contracting a Christian marriage.
Just a thought: Consider a less drastic case. Two baptized, religious, informed Lutherans get married before their pastor and witnesses, a sacramental marriage, a sacrament, and confessing as Lutherans the belief that marriage is not a sacrament, even actively denying that it is so.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/14/15 04:49 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
...so, too, consent expressed in words of the present between persons lawfully qualified to contract makes a marriage, because these two conditions are essential to the sacrament; while all else belongs to the solemnization of the sacrament, as being done in order that the marriage may be more fittingly performed. Hence if these be omitted it is a true marriage, although the contracting parties sin, unless they have a lawful motive for being excused.


1.) A common law marriage between Christians did NOT entail "consent expressed in words of the present." Is it a Sacrament?

2.) Since "these two conditions are essential to the sacrament; while all else belongs to the solemnization of the sacrament" then common law marriages of Catholics with "consent expressed in words of the present between persons lawfully qualified to contract makes a marriage." It is what is essential because "ALL else belongs to the solemnization of the sacrament."
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/19/15 01:56 PM

From "The Theology of Marriage," by Msgr. Cormac Burke (a member of the Rota, the Marriage Tribunal of the Holy See in Rome)

One striking difference between matrimony and other sacraments should be noted. In other sacraments (apart from infant baptism), a specific sacramental intention is needed for their reception. In matrimony, the intention of receiving the sacrament is not required; it is enough if one intends the natural reality. Not even a religious intention is needed -- rather, simply the intention to marry. If this is the parties' intention, both being in Christ [that is, baptized], they receive what they intended, raised (perhaps without their realizing it) to the sacramental and supernatural level, enriched and transformed by grace. What is needed is not a sacramental intention -- not even implicitly -- but a matrimonial intention. Regarding marriage itself, then, the parties must have full personal intention to marry; regarding sacramentality, no further intention is required of them.

pg. 11


From this we can conclude that one does not have to desire to receive the sacrament itself, for the marriage to be sacramental. All that is needed is for both parties to be validly baptized, and have the minimum intention of seeking to contract the natural reality of marriage.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/20/15 09:45 AM

Opinion One.

Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
...so, too, consent expressed in words of the present between persons lawfully qualified to contract makes a marriage, because these two conditions are essential to the sacrament; while all else belongs to the solemnization of the sacrament, as being done in order that the marriage may be more fittingly performed. Hence if these be omitted it is a true marriage, although the contracting parties sin, unless they have a lawful motive for being excused.


1.) A common law marriage between Christians did NOT entail "consent expressed in words of the present." Is it a Sacrament?

2.) Since "these two conditions are essential to the sacrament; while all else belongs to the solemnization of the sacrament" then common law marriages of Catholics with "consent expressed in words of the present between persons lawfully qualified to contract makes a marriage." It is what is essential because "ALL else belongs to the solemnization of the sacrament."




Opinion Two

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
From "The Theology of Marriage," by Msgr. Cormac Burke (a member of the Rota, the Marriage Tribunal of the Holy See in Rome)

One striking difference between matrimony and other sacraments should be noted. In other sacraments (apart from infant baptism), a specific sacramental intention is needed for their reception. In matrimony, the intention of receiving the sacrament is not required; it is enough if one intends the natural reality. Not even a religious intention is needed -- rather, simply the intention to marry. If this is the parties' intention, both being in Christ [that is, baptized], they receive what they intended, raised (perhaps without their realizing it) to the sacramental and supernatural level, enriched and transformed by grace. What is needed is not a sacramental intention -- not even implicitly -- but a matrimonial intention. Regarding marriage itself, then, the parties must have full personal intention to marry; regarding sacramentality, no further intention is required of them.

pg. 11


From this we can conclude that one does not have to desire to receive the sacrament itself, for the marriage to be sacramental. All that is needed is for both parties to be validly baptized, and have the minimum intention of seeking to contract the natural reality of marriage.


So is "consent expressed in words of the present" necessary as in Opinion One above? See question 1.) above also.
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/20/15 10:24 AM

Yes, it would be necessary. However, it doesn't have to necessarily be expressed verbally; it could well be done by letter. In fact, the partner doesn't even have to be physically present. All that is needed is the consent expressed in words of the present, as opposed to the future.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/20/15 01:38 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Yes, it would be necessary. However, it doesn't have to necessarily be expressed verbally; it could well be done by letter. In fact, the partner doesn't even have to be physically present. All that is needed is the consent expressed in words of the present, as opposed to the future.


Then, as requested again:

Originally Posted by ajk

1.) A common law marriage between Christians did NOT entail "consent expressed in words of the present." Is it a Sacrament?

2.) Since "these two conditions are essential to the sacrament; while all else belongs to the solemnization of the sacrament" then common law marriages of Catholics with "consent expressed in words of the present between persons lawfully qualified to contract makes a marriage." It is what is essential because "ALL else belongs to the solemnization of the sacrament."
What is the answer to the question, 1.); comment on the statement 2.).
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/20/15 01:51 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
From "The Theology of Marriage," by Msgr. Cormac Burke (a member of the Rota, the Marriage Tribunal of the Holy See in Rome)

One striking difference between matrimony and other sacraments should be noted. In other sacraments (apart from infant baptism), a specific sacramental intention is needed for their reception. In matrimony, the intention of receiving the sacrament is not required; it is enough if one intends the natural reality. Not even a religious intention is needed -- rather, simply the intention to marry. If this is the parties' intention, both being in Christ [that is, baptized], they receive what they intended, raised (perhaps without their realizing it) to the sacramental and supernatural level, enriched and transformed by grace. What is needed is not a sacramental intention -- not even implicitly -- but a matrimonial intention. Regarding marriage itself, then, the parties must have full personal intention to marry; regarding sacramentality, no further intention is required of them.

pg. 11


From this we can conclude that one does not have to desire to receive the sacrament itself, for the marriage to be sacramental. All that is needed is for both parties to be validly baptized, and have the minimum intention of seeking to contract the natural reality of marriage.


So to this must be added that the minimum intent must be in the form of "consent expressed in words of the present" either verbally or in writing. Do those words meed any witnessing beyond the participation of the spouses?


Also, from before, they must be "believing Christians."

As stated, Msgr. Cormac Burke's unqualified appraisal would also apply to two believing Catholic spouses.
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/20/15 10:39 PM

"Do those words meed any witnessing beyond the participation of the spouses?"

If you actually read his book, you'll find an answer to all of your questions.


"Also, from before, they must be "believing Christians.""

No, they don't have to be believing Christians to confer the sacrament. They simply have to be baptized. I was mistaken in my previous assessment.


"As stated, Msgr. Cormac Burke's unqualified appraisal would also apply to two believing Catholic spouses."

Msgr. Burke is most certainly qualified to give an appraisal on Catholic theology; especially canon law. In fact, he served 13 years on the Roman Rota as an “auditor” (essentially, a judge), retiring in 1999. https://canonlawblog.wordpress.com/2006/05/25/msgr-cormac-burkes-canon-law-website/

Anyhow, I fail to understand exactly what you're trying to get across.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/21/15 08:43 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"Do those words meed any witnessing beyond the participation of the spouses?"

If you actually read his book, you'll find an answer to all of your questions.
Now what kind of an answer is that?

The dynamic of this forum and this discussion is to present relevant arguments, here and explicitly. "read his book" is not a relevant argument but a dismissal. Having presented a reference it is incumbent on you to interpret it -- or not if you simply choose to decline -- as required.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/21/15 08:54 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic

"As stated, Msgr. Cormac Burke's unqualified appraisal would also apply to two believing Catholic spouses."

...

Anyhow, I fail to understand exactly what you're trying to get across.
Read the quote, "Msgr. Cormac Burke's unqualified appraisal." He says "both being in Christ [that is, baptized]." In the excerpt he does not distinguish or differentiate Catholic and non-Catholic. As presented his appraisal applies to all marriages between baptized spouses.

Consequently, "(a)s stated, Msgr. Cormac Burke's unqualified appraisal would also apply to two believing Catholic spouses."
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/21/15 03:32 PM

Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"Do those words meed any witnessing beyond the participation of the spouses?"

If you actually read his book, you'll find an answer to all of your questions.
Now what kind of an answer is that?

The dynamic of this forum and this discussion is to present relevant arguments, here and explicitly. "read his book" is not a relevant argument but a dismissal. Having presented a reference it is incumbent on you to interpret it -- or not if you simply choose to decline -- as required.


I am not here to spoon feed you answers. I have better things to do. But to answer your question: Theologically speaking, no. Witnesses are not required or even essential to the sacrament of matrimony.

Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/21/15 03:35 PM

Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by RomCatholic

"As stated, Msgr. Cormac Burke's unqualified appraisal would also apply to two believing Catholic spouses."

...

Anyhow, I fail to understand exactly what you're trying to get across.
Read the quote, "Msgr. Cormac Burke's unqualified appraisal." He says "both being in Christ [that is, baptized]." In the excerpt he does not distinguish or differentiate Catholic and non-Catholic. As presented his appraisal applies to all marriages between baptized spouses.

Consequently, "(a)s stated, Msgr. Cormac Burke's unqualified appraisal would also apply to two believing Catholic spouses."


Yes, it would apply to protestants as well. However, I am still confused by your statement. Why wouldn't it apply to Catholics?
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/21/15 07:16 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"Do those words meed any witnessing beyond the participation of the spouses?"

If you actually read his book, you'll find an answer to all of your questions.
Now what kind of an answer is that?

The dynamic of this forum and this discussion is to present relevant arguments, here and explicitly. "read his book" is not a relevant argument but a dismissal. Having presented a reference it is incumbent on you to interpret it -- or not if you simply choose to decline -- as required.


I am not here to spoon feed you answers. I have better things to do. But to answer your question: Theologically speaking, no. Witnesses are not required or even essential to the sacrament of matrimony.

You are here I would hope to answer questions put to you. If you see yourself doing that with a spoon then fine. I can't read a passage and understand it with your mind so you must answer and provide details as I require if we are to have a productive and respectful dialog.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/21/15 08:33 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by RomCatholic

"As stated, Msgr. Cormac Burke's unqualified appraisal would also apply to two believing Catholic spouses."
...
Anyhow, I fail to understand exactly what you're trying to get across.

Read the quote, "Msgr. Cormac Burke's unqualified appraisal." He says "both being in Christ [that is, baptized]." In the excerpt he does not distinguish or differentiate Catholic and non-Catholic. As presented his appraisal applies to all marriages between baptized spouses.

Consequently, "(a)s stated, Msgr. Cormac Burke's unqualified appraisal would also apply to two believing Catholic spouses."

Yes, it would apply to protestants as well. However, I am still confused by your statement. Why wouldn't it apply to Catholics?
I did not ask about Protestants or any others, only Catholics.

So by "Msgr. Cormac Burke's unqualified appraisal" as given:

1.)Two Catholics marry before a Judge or privately without witnesses or clergy: it is a sacrament.

2.) Any baptized man and woman marry: it is a sacrament.

3.) Baptism alone -- just being baptized -- gives to the Christian complete autonomy to marry, to accomplish a marriage that is a sacrament.

Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/22/15 01:43 AM

Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by RomCatholic

"As stated, Msgr. Cormac Burke's unqualified appraisal would also apply to two believing Catholic spouses."
...
Anyhow, I fail to understand exactly what you're trying to get across.

Read the quote, "Msgr. Cormac Burke's unqualified appraisal." He says "both being in Christ [that is, baptized]." In the excerpt he does not distinguish or differentiate Catholic and non-Catholic. As presented his appraisal applies to all marriages between baptized spouses.

Consequently, "(a)s stated, Msgr. Cormac Burke's unqualified appraisal would also apply to two believing Catholic spouses."

Yes, it would apply to protestants as well. However, I am still confused by your statement. Why wouldn't it apply to Catholics?
I did not ask about Protestants or any others, only Catholics.

So by "Msgr. Cormac Burke's unqualified appraisal" as given:

1.)Two Catholics marry before a Judge or privately without witnesses or clergy: it is a sacrament.

2.) Any baptized man and woman marry: it is a sacrament.

3.) Baptism alone -- just being baptized -- gives to the Christian complete autonomy to marry, to accomplish a marriage that is a sacrament.




Precisely. That is why I found your statement odd.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/22/15 04:09 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Precisely. That is why I found your statement odd.


Reconcile
Quote
1.)Two Catholics marry before a Judge or privately without witnesses or clergy: it is a sacrament.
with:
Originally Posted by ajk


Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"3. What is the status of two Catholics who marry before a non-Catholic minister without dispensation and do so: (i) secretly/privately; (ii) openly/publicly?"

Well, why would two Catholics be getting married outside of the Church in the first place? Anyhow, it would be invalid under both circumstances.
Catholics do get married outside of the Church. Invalid for both (i) and (ii) you say. What exactly makes it invalid in each case?
[emphasis added]
Originally Posted by RomCatholic

"Catholics do get married outside of the Church. Invalid for both (i) and (ii) you say. What exactly makes it invalid in each case?"

Firstly, there is no reason why two Catholics would be getting married outside the Church in the first place. Nor would a bishop grant a dispensation to two Catholics. It simply doesn't make any sense. The only reason a dispensation would be given, is in the case of a mixed marriage. Since Catholics are bound to the Church's laws, a dispensation must be granted for a marriage to be considered valid.
[emphasis added]
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/22/15 05:17 AM

Every valid marriage between Christians has full religious value, in that it involves "marrying in Christ." The marriage of two protestants who exchange valid natural consent before a civil registrar is a religious marriage and a sacrament. Hence, while one can draw a contrast between "Christian" and "natural" marriage, one cannot in all propriety do so between "religious" and "civil" marriage -- nor are "religious" and "sacramental" marriage necessarily the same thing. Common parlance may understandably fall into looseness of expression in these points, but theological or canonical discourse should avoid it.

To suggest that, without the presence of witnesses, there is no sacrament because there is no essential reference to the church is to mistake the theological nature of marriage. I therefore cannot agree that "the presence of the priest and of the community in the celebration of marriage is the expression and the cause of the very presence and action of Christ," on the ground that while the spouses are ministers they are not such "independently of the apostolic function that links them to the risen Savior, nor separate from the fraternity into which they have been incorporated." To posit that the presence of the Christian community -- represented at least by the witnesses and by the officiating priest -- is necessary in order to achieve the "complete sacramental structure" of matrimony is an attempt to develop a theological thesis based on an accidental juridic requirement.

In short, then, with regard to marriage of Christians, one must distinguish between canonical (or liturgical form, and sacramental form. The sacramental form is the same as in natural marriage (the expression of consent), as is the essential rite (matter and form combined). Bellarmine criticizes Melchor Cano's error in this respect, which was precisely to claim that "if matrimony is truly a sacrament, then, besides the civil contract, it should have some sacred form, as well as an ecclesiastical minister." It is important to realize that the question of canonical form is completely irrelevant to the theological consideration of marriage and concretely of its sacramentality. Much of the confusion concerning this matter that has developed over the past few decades must be attributed to theologians allowing the question of form to be invoked as if it had theological relevance.

At times it has been suggested that the church should drop the requirement of canonical form and simply recognize marriages celebrated according to civil law. Where there are significant difficulties to this suggestion, they are of a merely socio-juridical or pastoral-practical nature. There are, in other words, no theological difficulties to be advanced against the possible legislation of such a change. Marriages thus celebrated between two Christians would be just as sacramental as those celebrated "in church." More accuratley, to insist on what we havesaid, such civil marriages would -- in the theological, though not in the merely human-social sense -- be celebrate "in church."

From "Theology of Marriage," pp 8-10


Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/22/15 05:52 AM

The portion you highlighted is in reference to mixed marriages. A dispensation wouldn't be granted to two Catholics getting married.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/22/15 09:44 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Every valid marriage between Christians... be celebrate "in church."

From "Theology of Marriage," pp 8-10

This rounds out Msgr. Cormac Burke's view and explains a lot. And it qualifies what is in the first quote from page 11 and your misleading if not actually incorrect response of "[p]recisely."

So by Msgr. Cormac Burke's appraisal as given on pages 8-11 of The Theology of Marriage for the following (with minor editing of my original questions for clarity):

Quote
1.a)Two Catholics marry before a Judge: it is a sacrament.
No.

Quote
1.b)Two Catholics marry ... privately without witnesses or clergy: it is a sacrament.
Most likely?

Quote
2.) Any baptized man and woman marry: it is a sacrament.
i.)Yes if they are not Catholic. ii.)Not always if they are Catholic.

Quote
3.) Baptism alone -- just being baptized -- gives to the Christian complete autonomy to marry, to accomplish a marriage that is a sacrament.
[emphasis added] No by 1.a and 2.)ii.) above.

So as you interpret Msgr. Cormac Burke, how would you answer?
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/22/15 10:02 AM

Quote
1.a)Two Catholics marry before a Judge: it is a sacrament.No.


It would be a sacrament, theologically speaking.


Quote
1.b)Two Catholics marry ... privately without witnesses or clergy: it is a sacrament.Most likely?


No, a sacrament.


Quote
2.) Any baptized man and woman marry: it is a sacrament.i.)Yes if they are not Catholic. ii.)Not always if they are Catholic.


False.

Quote
3.) Baptism alone -- just being baptized -- gives to the Christian complete autonomy to marry, to accomplish a marriage that is a sacrament.
[emphasis added] No by 1.a and 2.)ii.) above.

So as you interpret Msgr. Cormac Burke, how would you answer? [/quote]

Both baptism and consent. However, you would have to specify what you mean by "complete autonomy".


Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/22/15 10:14 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Quote
2.) Any baptized man and woman marry: it is a sacrament.i.)Yes if they are not Catholic. ii.)Not always if they are Catholic.


False.
Why false especially for i.)? "Both baptism and consent" as you say.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/22/15 10:14 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
The portion you highlighted is in reference to mixed marriages. A dispensation wouldn't be granted to two Catholics getting married.
But it could be. It is arbitrary according to Msgr. Burke:

Quote
At times it has been suggested that the church should drop the requirement of canonical form and simply recognize marriages celebrated according to civil law. Where there are significant difficulties to this suggestion, they are of a merely socio-juridical or pastoral-practical nature. There are, in other words, no theological difficulties to be advanced against the possible legislation of such a change. Marriages thus celebrated between two Christians would be just as sacramental as those celebrated "in church." More accuratley, to insist on what we havesaid, such civil marriages would -- in the theological, though not in the merely human-social sense -- be celebrate "in church."

From "Theology of Marriage,"
[emphasis added]

I have many, many issues with the theological ramifications of what Msgr. Burke writes. To do him justice, I should read his entire book but on the basis of what has been quoted here it would be a waste of my good money. Considering his impressive credentials and especially his authority I find his writing here (including some incidental remarks that I intent to explore) theologically benighted and frightening.
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/22/15 10:31 AM

Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Quote
2.) Any baptized man and woman marry: it is a sacrament.i.)Yes if they are not Catholic. ii.)Not always if they are Catholic.


False.
Why false especially for i.)? "Both baptism and consent" as you say.


It is true for i., but not for ii.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/22/15 10:58 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Quote
1.a)Two Catholics marry before a Judge: it is a sacrament.No.


It would be a sacrament, theologically speaking.


The two Catholics in 1.a) after several years divorce. One wants to remarry another who is Catholic. What says the Church:

1.) They marry before a Judge.

2.) They request a wedding in a Catholic Church from their Pastor.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/22/15 11:35 AM

Let's return to the USCCB document, A Pastoral Statement on Orthodox/Roman Catholic Marriages, and compare with Burke's assessment. The USCCB document has a narrower focus than Msgr. Burke's much more general assessment which, because it is so general, impacts what is in the Pastoral Statement.

Msgr. Burke's assessment:

Quote
At times it has been suggested that the church should drop the requirement of canonical form and simply recognize marriages celebrated according to civil law. Where there are significant difficulties to this suggestion, they are of a merely socio-juridical or pastoral-practical nature. There are, in other words, no theological difficulties to be advanced against the possible legislation of such a change. Marriages thus celebrated between two Christians would be just as sacramental as those celebrated "in church."[/b] More accurately, to insist on what we have said, such civil marriages would -- in the theological, though not in the merely human-social sense -- be celebrate "in church."

From "Theology of Marriage,"
[emphasis added]

USCCB

Quote
In the teaching of our churches, a sacramental marriage requires both the mutual consent of the believing Christian partners and God's blessing imparted through the official ministry of the Church. At the present time, there are differences in the ways by which this ministry is exercised in order to fulfill the theological and canonical norms for marriage in our churches. ...

We do not wish to underestimate the seriousness of these differences in practice and theological explanation. We consider their further study to be desirable. At the same time, we wish to emphasize our fundamental agreement. Both our churches have always agreed that ecclesial context is constitutive of the Christian sacrament of marriage. Within this fundamental agreement, history has shown various possibilities of realization so that no one particular form of expressing this ecclesial context may be considered absolutely normative in all circumstances for both churches.
[emphasis added] How is this to be reconciled with Msgr. Burke's assessment?

The USCCB document continues:

Quote
In our judgment, our present differences of practice and theology concerning the required ecclesial context for marriage pertain to the level of secondary theological reflection rather than to the level of dogma.
[emphasis added] Are they, the Joint US Committee of Orthodox and Roman Catholic Bishops, not aware of Msgr. Burke's assessment?

Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/22/15 11:54 AM

Without abandoning the discussion of Msgr. Burke's assessment some information in the CCC should be considered as to the thought of the Church and consistencies and inconsistencies, official documents versus the private writings of theologians and canonists.

The Latin text of the CCC:
Quote
1623 Secundum traditionem latinam, sponsi, tamquam ministri gratiae Christi, sibi mutuo Matrimonii conferunt sacramentum, suum consensum coram Ecclesia significantes. In traditionibus Ecclesiarum Orientalium, sacerdotes — Episcopi vel presbyteri — testes sunt consensus mutuo ab sponsis praestiti, 275 sed etiam eorum benedictio ad validitatem sacramenti est necessaria. 276
link

1623 English translation:
Quote
1623 According to Latin tradition, the spouses as ministers of Christ's grace mutually confer upon each other the sacrament of Matrimony by expressing their consent before the Church. In the tradition of the Eastern Churches, the priests (bishops or presbyters) are witnesses to the mutual consent given by the spouses,124 but for the validity of the sacrament their blessing is also necessary.125
link

However, if one enters the Vatican website at the home page in English and then navigates through links provided,

http://w2.vatican.va/content/vatican/en.html
http://www.vatican.va/archive/index.htm
http://www.vatican.va/archive/ccc/index.htm
http://www.vatican.va/archive/ENG0015/_INDEX.HTM
http://www.vatican.va/archive/ENG0015/__P52.HTM


the English of the CCC reads:

Quote
1623 In the Latin Church, it is ordinarily understood that the spouses, as ministers of Christ's grace, mutually confer upon each other the sacrament of Matrimony by expressing their consent before the Church. In the Eastern liturgies the minister of this sacrament (which is called "Crowning") is the priest or bishop who, after receiving the mutual consent of the spouses, successively crowns the bridegroom and the bride as a sign of the marriage covenant.
All the quotes above are on the Vatican website.

Also regarding another USCCB publication and the alternate English of CCC 1623:

============================
EWTN Catholic Q&A
Minister of the Sacrament of Matrimony
Question from John on 05-03-2001:
Dr. Carroll, The Catholic Church holds that the Eastern Church's teaching that the priest confers the sacrament of Matrimony upon the the couple is a valid Catholic opinion. The NCCB's document, "Eastern Catholics in the United States" says, " Marriage in the Eastern Church is a sacrament confered by the priest by means of the "crowning" and nuptual blessing, not by the couple as in the Latin Church." It was authored by my bishop, Andrew Pataki. The Catechism of the Catholic Church says, "1623. "In the Latin Church, it is ordinarily understood that the spouses, as ministers of Christ's grace, mutually confer upon each other the sacrament of Matrimony by expressing their consent before the Church. In the Eastern liturgies the minister of this sacrament (which is called 'Crowning') is the priest or bishop who, after receiving the mutual consent of the spouses, successively crowns the bridegroom and the bride as a sign of the marriage covenant." It is therefore an error to dismiss the Orthodox view as heretical because the Magisterium has ratified it as a valid opinion. ,John
Answer by Dr. William Carroll on 05-05-2000:
I am now aware of this fact, which as you say is in the Catholic Catechism. - Dr. Carroll

COPYRIGHT 2002
www.ewtn.com
======================== [emphasis added] link


Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/22/15 12:32 PM

Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Quote
1.a)Two Catholics marry before a Judge: it is a sacrament.No.


It would be a sacrament, theologically speaking.


The two Catholics in 1.a) after several years divorce. One wants to remarry another who is Catholic. What says the Church:

1.) They marry before a Judge.

2.) They request a wedding in a Catholic Church from their Pastor.


Since in Catholic theology, marriages are absolutely indissoluble once consummated, the second union (unless there are grounds for an annulment) would be considered adulterous.

Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/22/15 12:38 PM

Originally Posted by ajk
Let's return to the USCCB document, A Pastoral Statement on Orthodox/Roman Catholic Marriages, and compare with Burke's assessment. The USCCB document has a narrower focus than Msgr. Burke's much more general assessment which, because it is so general, impacts what is in the Pastoral Statement.

Msgr. Burke's assessment:

Quote
At times it has been suggested that the church should drop the requirement of canonical form and simply recognize marriages celebrated according to civil law. Where there are significant difficulties to this suggestion, they are of a merely socio-juridical or pastoral-practical nature. There are, in other words, no theological difficulties to be advanced against the possible legislation of such a change. Marriages thus celebrated between two Christians would be just as sacramental as those celebrated "in church."[/b] More accurately, to insist on what we have said, such civil marriages would -- in the theological, though not in the merely human-social sense -- be celebrate "in church."

From "Theology of Marriage,"
[emphasis added]

USCCB

Quote
In the teaching of our churches, a sacramental marriage requires both the mutual consent of the believing Christian partners and God's blessing imparted through the official ministry of the Church. At the present time, there are differences in the ways by which this ministry is exercised in order to fulfill the theological and canonical norms for marriage in our churches. ...

We do not wish to underestimate the seriousness of these differences in practice and theological explanation. We consider their further study to be desirable. At the same time, we wish to emphasize our fundamental agreement. Both our churches have always agreed that ecclesial context is constitutive of the Christian sacrament of marriage. Within this fundamental agreement, history has shown various possibilities of realization so that no one particular form of expressing this ecclesial context may be considered absolutely normative in all circumstances for both churches.
[emphasis added] How is this to be reconciled with Msgr. Burke's assessment?

The USCCB document continues:

Quote
In our judgment, our present differences of practice and theology concerning the required ecclesial context for marriage pertain to the level of secondary theological reflection rather than to the level of dogma.
[emphasis added] Are they, the Joint US Committee of Orthodox and Roman Catholic Bishops, not aware of Msgr. Burke's assessment?




Theologically speaking, there is nothing that would hinder the Church changing its legislation to accept civil marriages between Christians. It's a completely different question whether that is the state of affairs now.


According to Pohle-Preus

In this chapter we purpose to show, ( i ) that the Church possesses control over Christian marriage; (2) that this control is based on a positive divine law and can be exercised independently of the secular power; (3) ***that the Church has the exclusive right to establish diriment impediments***.

b) In order to understand how the Church can invalidate the Sacrament of Matrimony without changing its matter and form, we must consider that the validity of the Sacrament is conditioned by the validity of the matrimonial contract. By nullifying the contract, the Church deprives the Sacrament of its basis. The validity of the contract does not depend solely on the free will of the contracting parties ; it depends also on the will of God, which may manifest itself in a threefold manner : through the law of nature, through a positive law, or through an ***ecclesiastical precept***. Hence there are three distinct classes of diriment impediments:

(1) Impediments flowing from the law of nature (e. g. impotency, error, violence);
(2) Impediments set up by a positive 'divine law (e. g. the bond of an existing marriage) ;
(3) Impediments established by ecclesiastical law (e. g. clandestinity, difference of religion, affinity).


....


All other impediments are of purely ecclesiastical institution, and it needs no argument to prove that the Church can dispense from laws of her own making.
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/22/15 12:41 PM

I want to preface that the Church has the right to place ecclesiastical impediments which invalidates marriages between Catholics who marry outside the Church.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/22/15 12:51 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
I want to preface that the Church has the right to place ecclesiastical impediments which invalidates marriages between Catholics who marry outside the Church.
Does the Church have a right to "place ecclesiastical impediments which invalidates marriages" or otherwise impose conditions, between baptized non-Catholics?
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/22/15 01:10 PM

Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
I want to preface that the Church has the right to place ecclesiastical impediments which invalidates marriages between Catholics who marry outside the Church.
Does the Church have a right to "place ecclesiastical impediments which invalidates marriages" or otherwise impose conditions, between baptized non-Catholics?


Well, the Church doesn't recognize marriages that are done clandestinely (that is, without any witnesses or documentation), whether it is between Catholics or non-Catholic Christians. However, that doesn't necessarily mean a marriage between non-Catholic Christians is invalidated in this circumstance; yet it is with regards to Catholics. Ecclesiastical impediments typically apply to those baptized persons who fall under the Church's jurisdiction.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/22/15 01:21 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Hence there are three distinct classes of diriment impediments:

(1) Impediments flowing from the law of nature (e. g. impotency, error, violence);
(2) Impediments set up by a positive 'divine law (e. g. the bond of an existing marriage) ;
(3) Impediments established by ecclesiastical law (e. g. clandestinity, difference of religion, affinity).

....

All other impediments are of purely ecclesiastical institution, and it needs no argument to prove that the Church can dispense from laws of her own making.
So should (3) be eliminated from the list since " the Church can dispense from laws of her own making"?
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/22/15 01:26 PM

Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Hence there are three distinct classes of diriment impediments:

(1) Impediments flowing from the law of nature (e. g. impotency, error, violence);
(2) Impediments set up by a positive 'divine law (e. g. the bond of an existing marriage) ;
(3) Impediments established by ecclesiastical law (e. g. clandestinity, difference of religion, affinity).

....

All other impediments are of purely ecclesiastical institution, and it needs no argument to prove that the Church can dispense from laws of her own making.
So should (3) be eliminated from the list since " the Church can dispense from laws of her own making"?


Why would it be removed from the list, if the Church has already put in place ecclesiastical impediments?

By the way, I edited my previous comment.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/22/15 02:03 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Hence there are three distinct classes of diriment impediments:

(1) Impediments flowing from the law of nature (e. g. impotency, error, violence);
(2) Impediments set up by a positive 'divine law (e. g. the bond of an existing marriage) ;
(3) Impediments established by ecclesiastical law (e. g. clandestinity, difference of religion, affinity).

....

All other impediments are of purely ecclesiastical institution, and it needs no argument to prove that the Church can dispense from laws of her own making.
So should (3) be eliminated from the list since " the Church can dispense from laws of her own making"?


Why would it be removed from the list, if the Church has already put in place ecclesiastical impediments?

By the way, I edited my previous comment.
Let me rephrase since I wasn't clear. Of the three classes of diriment impediments, the Church cannot dispense from (1) and (2) but it can dispense from or modify (3). Do you agree?
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/22/15 03:13 PM

Yes, that is what the texts states.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/23/15 03:28 PM

So an invalid marriage is a sacrament (see below) ???

You say here:
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Originally Posted by ajk
1.a)Two Catholics marry before a Judge: it is a sacrament.No.


It would be a sacrament
, theologically speaking.


The two Catholics in 1.a) after several years divorce. One wants to remarry another who is Catholic. What says the Church:

1.) They marry before a Judge.

2.) They request a wedding in a Catholic Church from their Pastor.


Since in Catholic theology, marriages are absolutely indissoluble once consummated, the second union (unless there are grounds for an annulment) would be considered adulterous.


However, from before you said:

Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Originally Posted by ajk
"3. What is the status of two Catholics who marry before a non-Catholic minister without dispensation and do so: (i) secretly/privately; (ii) openly/publicly?"
Well, why would two Catholics be getting married outside of the Church in the first place? Anyhow, it would be invalid under both circumstances.
Catholics do get married outside of the Church. Invalid for both (i) and (ii) you say. What exactly makes it invalid in each case?

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Originally Posted by ajk
""Catholics do get married outside of the Church. Invalid for both (i) and (ii) you say. What exactly makes it invalid in each case?"

Firstly, there is no reason why two Catholics would be getting married outside the Church in the first place. Nor would a bishop grant a dispensation to two Catholics. It simply doesn't make any sense. The only reason a dispensation would be given, is in the case of a mixed marriage. Since Catholics are bound to the Church's laws, a dispensation must be granted for a marriage to be considered valid.

Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/23/15 04:04 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Ecclesiastical impediments typically apply to those baptized persons who fall under the Church's jurisdiction.


I understand how and why "jurisdiction" is used as here. It prompts me to comment on the difference in perspective that I see exemplified in this dialog and especially in opinions and so-called proofs from a canon law perspective. Now I like Canon Law for order and clarity but it should be the servant of theology, good applied theology, rather than that theology is some idealized, theoretical justification or vindication of the Canons.

So the development and understanding should be from the foundation -- theology, ecclesiology -- up and not top down. There is only one Christ and one baptism and one Church, His one body of which He is head. So all who are baptized into Christ are members of that One Church and, consequently, are properly subject to that one only Church.

The One True Church claims ALL Christians as members who have "put on" Christ.
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/23/15 04:06 PM

Originally Posted by ajk
So an invalid marriage is a sacrament (see below) ???

You say here:
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
[quote=ajk]1.a)Two Catholics marry before a Judge: it is a sacrament.No.


It would be a sacrament
, theologically speaking.


The two Catholics in 1.a) after several years divorce. One wants to remarry another who is Catholic. What says the Church:

1.) They marry before a Judge.

2.) They request a wedding in a Catholic Church from their Pastor.


Since in Catholic theology, marriages are absolutely indissoluble once consummated, the second union (unless there are grounds for an annulment) would be considered adulterous.


However, from before you said:

Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Originally Posted by ajk
"3. What is the status of two Catholics who marry before a non-Catholic minister without dispensation and do so: (i) secretly/privately; (ii) openly/publicly?"
Well, why would two Catholics be getting married outside of the Church in the first place? Anyhow, it would be invalid under both circumstances.
Catholics do get married outside of the Church. Invalid for both (i) and (ii) you say. What exactly makes it invalid in each case?

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Originally Posted by ajk
""Catholics do get married outside of the Church. Invalid for both (i) and (ii) you say. What exactly makes it invalid in each case?"

Firstly, there is no reason why two Catholics would be getting married outside the Church in the first place. Nor would a bishop grant a dispensation to two Catholics. It simply doesn't make any sense. The only reason a dispensation would be given, is in the case of a mixed marriage. Since Catholics are bound to the Church's laws, a dispensation must be granted for a marriage to be considered valid.

[/quote]


I had in mind fallen-away Catholics when I replied with my comments. So when they contracted a civil marriage, it would still be a sacrament.
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/23/15 04:23 PM

Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Ecclesiastical impediments typically apply to those baptized persons who fall under the Church's jurisdiction.


I understand how and why "jurisdiction" is used as here. It prompts me to comment on the difference in perspective that I see exemplified in this dialog and especially in opinions and so-called proofs from a canon law perspective. Now I like Canon Law for order and clarity but it should be the servant of theology, good applied theology, rather than that theology is some idealized, theoretical justification or vindication of the Canons.

So the development and understanding should be from the foundation -- theology, ecclesiology -- up and not top down. There is only one Christ and one baptism and one Church, His one body of which He is head. So all who are baptized into Christ are members of that One Church and, consequently, are properly subject to that one only Church.

The One True Church claims ALL Christians as members who have "put on" Christ.



Yes, the Church has claim over all Christians, but it does not follow that all are members of the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church. It would be absurd to place ecclesiastical impediments on protestants since they are not members of the Church. Perhaps I shouldn't have used the term "jurisdiction".
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/23/15 05:27 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
I had in mind fallen-away Catholics when I replied with my comments. So when they contracted a civil marriage, it would still be a sacrament.


So if "fallen-away" Catholics, or Catholics who have lost their faith get married in a civil ceremony it is an outward sign of the union of Christ and the Church (Eph 5:32)) that imparts grace, a sacrament? But if they are not, what, sufficiently "fallen-away" then no valid marriage, no sacrament. So here the farther you get from the Church the better your opportunity to have a sacramental marriage by a civil ceremony.
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/23/15 05:35 PM

Pretty much.
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/23/15 05:37 PM

I'll quote the relevant part:

If this is the parties' intention, both being in Christ, they receive what they intended, raised (perhaps without their realizing it) to the sacramental and supernatural level, enriched and transformed by grace. What is needed is not a sacramental intention -- not even implicitly -- but a matrimonial intention. Regarding marriage itself, then, the parties must have full personal intention to marry; regarding sacramentality, no further intention is required of them.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/23/15 06:00 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Pretty much.
That's not much of an answer. IF so, then this approach from Canon Law as you interpret it makes theology absurd, which is what I was saying about doing a top down theology where the Law neglects the Church (Ecclesiology). In that it, in some form, demonstrates the equality of all the baptized it is admirable but it then acts unaware of the reality of the Church as the "sacrament of salvation" (note my earlier comment, extra Ecclesiam nulla salus). My opinion.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/23/15 06:13 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
I'll quote the relevant part:

If this is the parties' intention, both being in Christ, they receive what they intended, raised (perhaps without their realizing it) to the sacramental and supernatural level, enriched and transformed by grace. What is needed is not a sacramental intention -- not even implicitly -- but a matrimonial intention. Regarding marriage itself, then, the parties must have full personal intention to marry; regarding sacramentality, no further intention is required of them.
You didn't directly answer my question so again, with context:

Two Catholics marry (non-Catholic ceremony, no dispensation); you say the marriage is invalid.

Two Catholics marry (non-Catholic ceremony, no dispensation); you say the marriage is a sacrament.
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/23/15 06:27 PM

Originally Posted by ajk
[quote=RomCatholic]

Two Catholics marry (non-Catholic ceremony, no dispensation); you say the marriage is invalid.

Two Catholics marry (non-Catholic ceremony, no dispensation); you say the marriage is a sacrament.


It depends on whether they are faithful or have formally defected from the Church. If they have not formally defected, or if the Church has not accepted their letter of defection, then they are still bound by canon law; and thus said marriage would be invalid (i.e. not a sacrament).
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/23/15 06:37 PM

The moderators have limited my posting, with the intent of eventually blocking me. They are hostile to anything "western," and thus I will make sure to inform everyone that this forum is unsuited for reasonable discussion.
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/23/15 11:03 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Originally Posted by ajk
[quote=RomCatholic]

Two Catholics marry (non-Catholic ceremony, no dispensation); you say the marriage is invalid.

Two Catholics marry (non-Catholic ceremony, no dispensation); you say the marriage is a sacrament.


It depends on whether they are faithful or have formally defected from the Church. If they have not formally defected, or if the Church has not accepted their letter of defection, then they are still bound by canon law; and thus said marriage would be invalid (i.e. not a sacrament).


Actually, as it turns out in 2009, Pope Benedict issued a motu proprio titled, "Omnium in Mentem," which stated:

The Code of Canon Law nonetheless prescribes that the faithful who have left the Church "by a formal act" are not bound by the ecclesiastical laws regarding the canonical form of marriage (cf. can. 1117), dispensation from the impediment of disparity of cult (cf. can. 1086) and the need for permission in the case of mixed marriages (cf. can. 1124). The underlying aim of this exception from the general norm of can. 11 was to ensure that marriages contracted by those members of the faithful would not be invalid due to defect of form or the impediment of disparity of cult.

Experience, however, has shown that this new law gave rise to numerous pastoral problems. First, in individual cases the definition and practical configuration of such a formal act of separation from the Church has proved difficult to establish, from both a theological and a canonical standpoint. In addition, many difficulties have surfaced both in pastoral activity and the practice of tribunals. Indeed, the new law appeared, at least indirectly, to facilitate and even in some way to encourage apostasy in places where the Catholic faithful are not numerous or where unjust marriage laws discriminate between citizens on the basis of religion. The new law also made difficult the return of baptized persons who greatly desired to contract a new canonical marriage following the failure of a preceding marriage. Finally, among other things, many of these marriages in effect became, as far as the Church is concerned, "clandestine" marriages.
Posted By: Orthodox Catholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/23/15 11:19 PM

RomCatholic,

Well, here you are going too far.

If I've read you correctly on the matter of marriage in East and West, your argument goes something like this:

The Western Catholic understanding of the Sacrament of Matrimony is that the Sacrament is effected by the man and woman entering into it;

The Eastern Catholic and Orthodox understanding is that the Sacrament/Mystery of Crowning is given to the consenting man and woman through the priest or bishop;

Then you posit, and please correct me if I've misunderstood your argument, that since the Western form is as valid as that of the East in the eyes of the Christian East, THEN this somehow makes the Western understanding the true one.

If I'm correct in assessing your interpretation here, then your argument is philosophically (not to mention theologically) unsound.

Alex
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/23/15 11:33 PM

Originally Posted by Orthodox Catholic
RomCatholic,

Then you posit, and please correct me if I've misunderstood your argument, that since the Western form is as valid as that of the East in the eyes of the Christian East, THEN this somehow makes the Western understanding the true one.

If I'm correct in assessing your interpretation here, then your argument is philosophically (not to mention theologically) unsound.

Alex


Yes, you definitely misunderstood me. In fact, I am confused as how you came to such a conclusion.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/24/15 12:35 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Originally Posted by ajk
Two Catholics marry (non-Catholic ceremony, no dispensation); you say the marriage is invalid.

Two Catholics marry (non-Catholic ceremony, no dispensation); you say the marriage is a sacrament.

It depends on whether they are faithful or have formally defected from the Church. If they have not formally defected, or if the Church has not accepted their letter of defection, then they are still bound by canon law; and thus said marriage would be invalid (i.e. not a sacrament).

Actually, as it turns out in 2009, Pope Benedict issued a motu proprio titled, "Omnium in Mentem," which stated:

The Code of Canon Law nonetheless prescribes that the faithful who have left the Church "by a formal act" are not bound by the ecclesiastical laws regarding the canonical form of marriage (cf. can. 1117), dispensation from the impediment of disparity of cult (cf. can. 1086) and the need for permission in the case of mixed marriages (cf. can. 1124). The underlying aim of this exception from the general norm of can. 11 was to ensure that marriages contracted by those members of the faithful would not be invalid due to defect of form or the impediment of disparity of cult.

Experience, however, has shown that this new law gave rise to numerous pastoral problems. First, in individual cases the definition and practical configuration of such a formal act of separation from the Church has proved difficult to establish, from both a theological and a canonical standpoint. In addition, many difficulties have surfaced both in pastoral activity and the practice of tribunals. Indeed, the new law appeared, at least indirectly, to facilitate and even in some way to encourage apostasy in places where the Catholic faithful are not numerous or where unjust marriage laws discriminate between citizens on the basis of religion. The new law also made difficult the return of baptized persons who greatly desired to contract a new canonical marriage following the failure of a preceding marriage. Finally, among other things, many of these marriages in effect became, as far as the Church is concerned, "clandestine" marriages.
This seems like a state of confusion. the fruit of a top-down development.
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/24/15 01:59 PM

It should be noted that having a priest preside over a wedding is not an ecclesiastical impediment, but rather a requirement. The impediments established by ecclesiastical law are clandestinity, difference of religion, affinity, etc.

According to Canon 1059: The marriage of catholics, even if only one party is baptised, is governed not only by divine law but also by canon law, without prejudice to the competence of the civil authority in respect of the merely civil effects of the marriage.

Also to go back to the fact that the couple themselves are the ministers of the sacrament, canon 1055.1-2 states:

Canon 1055.1 The marriage covenant, by which a man and a woman establish between themselves a partnership of their whole life, and which of its own very nature is ordered to the well-being of the spouses and to the procreation and upbringing of children, has, between the baptised, been raised by Christ the Lord to the dignity of a sacrament.

Canon 1055.2 Consequently, a valid marriage contract cannot exist between baptised persons without its being by that very fact a sacrament.

Note that it is simply referring to Christian marriages in general.
Posted By: Fr. Deacon Lance

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/25/15 10:45 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
The moderators have limited my posting, with the intent of eventually blocking me. They are hostile to anything "western," and thus I will make sure to inform everyone that this forum is unsuited for reasonable discussion.


Whether you are eventually blocked is up to you and your posting behavior. But I seem to remember you stating you didn't care in the least if you were banned. You seem to care now. We are not hostile to anything "western". We do not appreciate anyone Western or Eastern coming here and pontificating to the rest.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/26/15 09:53 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
It should be noted that having a priest preside over a wedding is not an ecclesiastical impediment, but rather a requirement. The impediments established by ecclesiastical law are clandestinity, difference of religion, affinity, etc.

According to Canon 1059: The marriage of catholics, even if only one party is baptised, is governed not only by divine law but also by canon law, without prejudice to the competence of the civil authority in respect of the merely civil effects of the marriage.

Also to go back to the fact that the couple themselves are the ministers of the sacrament, canon 1055.1-2 states:

Canon 1055.1 The marriage covenant, by which a man and a woman establish between themselves a partnership of their whole life, and which of its own very nature is ordered to the well-being of the spouses and to the procreation and upbringing of children, has, between the baptised, been raised by Christ the Lord to the dignity of a sacrament.

Canon 1055.2 Consequently, a valid marriage contract cannot exist between baptised persons without its being by that very fact a sacrament.

Note that it is simply referring to Christian marriages in general.


"Also to go back to the fact that the couple themselves are the ministers of the sacrament, canon 1055.1-2 states:"

A close reading of that canon doesn't even address "ministers of the sacrament."

What is clearly stated is that between baptized spouses the sacrament of marriage obtains if and only if the marriage is valid. Makes sense.

Also to be considered from the Occidental code, CIC:

Quote

CHAPTER V.

THE FORM OF THE CELEBRATION OF MARRIAGE

Can. 1108 §1. Only those marriages are valid which are contracted before the local ordinary, pastor, or a priest or deacon delegated by either of them, who assist, and before two witnesses according to the rules expressed in the following canons and without prejudice to the exceptions mentioned in cann. ⇒ 144, ⇒ 1112, §1, ⇒ 1116, and ⇒ 1127, §§1-2.

Can. 1127 §1. The prescripts of ⇒ can. 1108 are to be observed for the form to be used in a mixed marriage.

Nevertheless, if a Catholic party contracts marriage with a non-Catholic party of an Eastern rite, the canonical form of the celebration must be observed for liceity only; for validity, however, the presence of a sacred minister is required and the other requirements of law are to be observed.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/26/15 12:49 PM

These are re-posted here from Why is marriage perceived as eternal in Orthodox theology? since further discussion of the particulars pertains to this thread.

Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
No where was it stated that a "contract" effects a sacrament. You are simply setting up straw men. Nor do I hold to a "contractualist" theory of marriage.


Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Marriage as such is a contract, and the essence of a contract (i.e., that which makes it a contract) is the consent of the parties. Since marriage between Christians and the Sacrament of Matrimony are one and the same thing, the essence of the sacrament must be the same, i.e., the consent of the parties.
Thus here, the sacrament is the consent is a contract.
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
St. Thomas distinguishes three things when speaking about matrimony; namely, its cause, its essence, and its effect.

He defines the cause as the mutual consent expressed in words of the present. The essence as union. And the effect to which matrimony is directed, namely the common life in family matters.

He states: But in matrimony our acts are the sufficient cause for the production of the proximate effect, which is the marriage bond, because whoever has the right to dispose of himself can bind himself to another. Consequently the priest's blessing is not required for matrimony as being essential to the sacrament.



St. Thomas, as always, is informative in his metaphysical overlay on theology. But it is a metaphysics and it is an overlay: instructive, not definitive.

The west differentiates, the east integrates; the Church embraces both.
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/26/15 12:53 PM

"What is clearly stated is that between baptized spouses the sacrament of marriage obtains if and only if the marriage is valid. Makes sense."

You are clearly misinterpreting what it states.

Canon 1055.2 Consequently, a valid marriage contract cannot exist between baptised persons without its being by that very fact a sacrament.

What it is stating is that marriage between Christians, and the sacrament of matrimony are one and the same thing. As Pope St. Leo XIII stated:

A distinction, or rather severance, of this kind cannot be approved; for certain it is that in Christian marriage the contract is inseparable from the sacrament, and that, for this reason, the contract cannot be true and legitimate without being a sacrament as well.


You should stop pressing the issue. You are clearly in error.

Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/26/15 01:09 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Yes, the Church has claim over all Christians, but it does not follow that all are members of the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church. It would be absurd to place ecclesiastical impediments on protestants since they are not members of the Church. Perhaps I shouldn't have used the term "jurisdiction".
Sure they are; they're receiving the sacraments, baptism and matrimony at the least. Not card carrying members as the law might view it. But they receive the sacraments, there is only one baptism, one Church: extra Ecclesiam nulla salus.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/26/15 01:27 PM

Originally Posted by ajk
I have many, many issues with the theological ramifications of what Msgr. Burke writes. To do him justice, I should read his entire book but on the basis of what has been quoted here it would be a waste of my good money. Considering his impressive credentials and especially his authority I find his writing here (including some incidental remarks that I intent to explore) theologically benighted and frightening.
I think better of Msgr. Burke's book after reading on his website: "My book,The Theology of Marriage: Personalism, Doctrine and Canon Law (Catholic University of America Press, 2015), continues to involve me in "to's-and-fro's" of opinion. Something to be welcomed." So I would read it though for me it is not a cost effective purchase.

As he says, he offers an opinion. He speculates and carries a certain mindset to its logical conclusion. As a scholar it is legitimate for him to do this. His proposed conclusions here should not be presented or taken as the voice of the Rota.
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/26/15 02:47 PM

No, they are not. This is a serious error on your part.

Being institutionally incorporated is absolutely necessary for salvation, that is the true meaning of EENS. See for example: Unam sanctam (1302), Cantate Domino (1441), and Syllabus errorum 17-18 (1864)




Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/26/15 03:04 PM

Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by ajk
I think better of Msgr. Burke's book after reading on his website: "My book,The Theology of Marriage: Personalism, Doctrine and Canon Law (Catholic University of America Press, 2015), continues to involve me in "to's-and-fro's" of opinion. Something to be welcomed." So I would read it though for me it is not a cost effective purchase.

As he says, he offers an opinion. He speculates and carries a certain mindset to its logical conclusion. As a scholar it is legitimate for him to do this. His proposed conclusions here should not be presented or taken as the voice of the Rota.


I don't think he is referring to his own view. I think his comment pertains to dealing with the opinion of others, as the overall context indicates.
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/26/15 03:07 PM

"St. Thomas, as always, is informative in his metaphysical overlay on theology. But it is a metaphysics and it is an overlay: instructive, not definitive."


The statement by St. Thomas: "But in matrimony our acts are the sufficient cause for the production of the proximate effect, which is the marriage bond," cannot be argued against. It is the spouses themselves who contract the marriage bond, not the priest. I can't imagine any argument that could demonstrate otherwise.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/27/15 08:49 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"What is clearly stated is that between baptized spouses the sacrament of marriage obtains if and only if the marriage is valid. Makes sense."

You are clearly misinterpreting what it states.

What!!?? Are you saying this is incorrect: " between baptized spouses the sacrament of marriage obtains if and only if the marriage is valid"? Do not read more into this. It says between baptized spouses every valid marriage is a sacrament and every marriage that is a sacrament is valid. (see below at the end)

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Canon 1055.2 Consequently, a valid marriage contract cannot exist between baptised persons without its being by that very fact a sacrament.
How is this different from what I said except for including the word "contract"?

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
What it is stating is that marriage between Christians, and the sacrament of matrimony are one and the same thing.
No. Every "valid marriage."

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
As Pope St. Leo XIII stated:

A distinction, or rather severance, of this kind cannot be approved; for certain it is that in Christian marriage the contract is inseparable from the sacrament, and that, for this reason, the contract cannot be true and legitimate without being a sacrament as well.
OK. Nothing I've said contradicts this. Actually I though Fr. Burke could be interpreted as permitting such a separation.

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
You should stop pressing the issue.
What issue? I think you're imagining things.

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
You are clearly in error.
Still to be determined: who is the you.

You can demonstrate the perceived error in my statement by simply giving an example of either of the following:

1) a valid marriage between Christians that is NOT a sacrament

2) a sacramental marriage between Christians that is not valid
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/27/15 10:24 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"St. Thomas, as always, is informative in his metaphysical overlay on theology. But it is a metaphysics and it is an overlay: instructive, not definitive."

The statement by St. Thomas: "But in matrimony our acts are the sufficient cause for the production of the proximate effect, which is the marriage bond," cannot be argued against. It is the spouses themselves who contract the marriage bond, not the priest. I can't imagine any argument that could demonstrate otherwise.

Lex orandi, lex credendi.

Ut legem credendi lex statuat supplicandi.

From The Catholic Encyclopedia (1917):

Quote
...where the parties have already given their consent, where the marriage is consequently an accomplished fact and the priest has said "ego conjungo vos in matrimonium",


Quote
Indeed the Spanish rituals, especially that of Toledo, even down to modern times, recognize a double ceremony. In the first, after a solemn admonition to disclose any impediment that may exist, the parties give their consent "per verba de præsenti", and the priest, at least in the later forms (see "Manuale Toletanum", Antwerp, 1680, 457) pronounces the words: "I on the part of God Almighty join you in wedlock", etc. None the less the priest is directed in the rubric which immediately follows to warn the parties that "they must not dwell together in the same house before receiving the blessing of the priest and the Church".

The first entry does have the comment:

Quote
The words of the priest, "Ego vos in matrimonium conjungo", which, though sanctioned by the Council of Trent, are apt to convey the false impression that the priest is the minister of the Sacrament, are not primitive, at any rate in this form, and are only to be found in Rituals of comparatively recent date.
[emphasis added]

Interpretation: Canonists (and some theologians) have constructed selective arguments with over-reaching conclusions based on incomplete information, becoming so ingrained and unquestioned, that they must now with hindsight justify their excess by making it appear as dogma. This is the are you going to believe me or your own eyes proof. "Ego vos in matrimonium conjungo." Not even the Byzantine ritual has such an explicit statement.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/27/15 10:31 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
No, they are not. This is a serious error on your part.

Being institutionally incorporated is absolutely necessary for salvation, that is the true meaning of EENS. See for example: Unam sanctam (1302), Cantate Domino (1441), and Syllabus errorum 17-18 (1864)


Are the Orthodox "institutionally incorporated"; are they saved?

Are the X "institutionally incorporated"; are they saved?
X= Lutherans; Methodists; Baptists; the baptized; etc.

Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/27/15 11:05 AM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
No, they are not. This is a serious error on your part.

Being institutionally incorporated is absolutely necessary for salvation, that is the true meaning of EENS. See for example: Unam sanctam (1302), Cantate Domino (1441), and Syllabus errorum 17-18 (1864)


A "serious error on" on whose part? From the CCC [emphasis added]:

=================================================

Who belongs to the Catholic Church?

836 "All men are called to this catholic unity of the People of God.... and to it, in different ways, belong or are ordered: the Catholic faithful, others who believe in Christ, and finally all mankind, called by God's grace to salvation."320

837 "Fully incorporated into the society of the Church are those who, possessing the Spirit of Christ, accept all the means of salvation given to the Church together with her entire organization, and who - by the bonds constituted by the profession of faith, the sacraments, ecclesiastical government, and communion - are joined in the visible structure of the Church of Christ, who rules her through the Supreme Pontiff and the bishops. Even though incorporated into the Church, one who does not however persevere in charity is not saved. He remains indeed in the bosom of the Church, but 'in body' not 'in heart.'"321

838 "The Church knows that she is joined in many ways to the baptized who are honored by the name of Christian, but do not profess the Catholic faith in its entirety or have not preserved unity or communion under the successor of Peter."322 Those "who believe in Christ and have been properly baptized are put in a certain, although imperfect, communion with the Catholic Church."323 With the Orthodox Churches, this communion is so profound "that it lacks little to attain the fullness that would permit a common celebration of the Lord's Eucharist."324



"Outside the Church there is no salvation"

846 How are we to understand this affirmation, often repeated by the Church Fathers?335 Re-formulated positively, it means that all salvation comes from Christ the Head through the Church which is his Body:

Basing itself on Scripture and Tradition, the Council teaches that the Church, a pilgrim now on earth, is necessary for salvation: the one Christ is the mediator and the way of salvation; he is present to us in his body which is the Church. He himself explicitly asserted the necessity of faith and Baptism, and thereby affirmed at the same time the necessity of the Church which men enter through Baptism [Ecclesiae, in quam homines per Baptismum ... intrant] as through a door. Hence they could not be saved who, knowing that the Catholic Church was founded as necessary by God through Christ, would refuse either to enter it or to remain in it.336

847 This affirmation is not aimed at those who, through no fault of their own, do not know Christ and his Church:

Those who, through no fault of their own, do not know the Gospel of Christ or his Church, but who nevertheless seek God with a sincere heart, and, moved by grace, try in their actions to do his will as they know it through the dictates of their conscience - those too may achieve eternal salvation.337

868 The Church is catholic: she proclaims the fullness of the faith. She bears in herself and administers the totality of the means of salvation. She is sent out to all peoples. She speaks to all men. She encompasses all times. She is "missionary of her very nature" (AG 2).

870 "The sole Church of Christ which in the Creed we profess to be one, holy, catholic, and apostolic, . . . subsists in the Catholic Church, which is governed by the successor of Peter and by the bishops in communion with him. Nevertheless, many elements of sanctification and of truth are found outside its visible confines"(LG 8).

Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/27/15 11:55 AM

Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
No, they are not. This is a serious error on your part.

Being institutionally incorporated is absolutely necessary for salvation, that is the true meaning of EENS. See for example: Unam sanctam (1302), Cantate Domino (1441), and Syllabus errorum 17-18 (1864)


Are the Orthodox "institutionally incorporated"; are they saved?

Are the X "institutionally incorporated"; are they saved?
X= Lutherans; Methodists; Baptists; the baptized; etc.



No, none of the above mentioned Christians are institutionally incorporated in to the Catholic Church. This is non-controversial. The dogma of EENS requires one to be both mystically and institutionally incorporated into the Church. The only way for this to happen is through formal conversion, or through an unexpected miracle.
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/27/15 12:04 PM

"What!!?? Are you saying this is incorrect: " between baptized spouses the sacrament of marriage obtains if and only if the marriage is valid"? Do not read more into this. It says between baptized spouses every valid marriage is a sacrament and every marriage that is a sacrament is valid."

A marriage cannot be valid without it also being a sacrament. They mean the same thing.

"Canon 1055.2 Consequently, a valid marriage contract cannot exist between baptised persons without its being by that very fact a sacrament."

Canon 1055.2 is referring to Christian marriages in general. What it is stating is that the sacrament cannot be separated from the marriage contract, as long as both are validly baptized.

"Nothing I've said contradicts this. Actually I though Fr. Burke could be interpreted as permitting such a separation."

You are misinterpreting the meaning of canon 1055.2. Also, Msgr. Burke does not in any way suggest that a separation can occur; in fact, he states the exact opposite.


"1) a valid marriage between Christians that is NOT a sacrament

2) a sacramental marriage between Christians that is not valid"

There is no difference between validity and sacramentality.
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/27/15 02:52 PM

You emphasize the part about the council of Trent, yet neglect the part which states: "are apt to convey the false impression that the priest is the minister of the Sacrament, are not primitive, at any rate in this form, and are only to be found in Rituals of comparatively recent date."

What the priest says is absolutely irrelevant.

""ego conjungo vos in matrimonium""

The rite of marriage no longer uses this phrase. Furthermore, it is not proof of anything.


"Interpretation: Canonists (and theologians) have constructed selective arguments with over-reaching conclusions based on incomplete information,"

That is not accurate at all. As I have demonstrated, it is the other way around. All the evidence I have so far provided demonstrates that the blessing of the priest is not essential, nor does it confer the sacrament. This goes back as far Pope Nicholas I, and can be traced even earlier to Tertullian and St. Augustine.


"becoming so ingrained and unquestioned, that they must now with hindsight justify their excess by making it appear as dogma."

This is the exact opposite of the relevant facts. Nor has it been my contention that it is dogma, rather, it is a theologically certain opinion.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/27/15 03:16 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
No, they are not. This is a serious error on your part.

Being institutionally incorporated is absolutely necessary for salvation, that is the true meaning of EENS. See for example: Unam sanctam (1302), Cantate Domino (1441), and Syllabus errorum 17-18 (1864)


Are the Orthodox "institutionally incorporated"; are they saved?

Are the X "institutionally incorporated"; are they saved?
X= Lutherans; Methodists; Baptists; the baptized; etc.



No, none of the above mentioned Christians are institutionally incorporated in to the Catholic Church. This is non-controversial. The dogma of EENS requires one to be both mystically and institutionally incorporated into the Church. The only way for this to happen is through formal conversion, or through an unexpected miracle.
The questions have two parts and you have selectively only answered the one part -- the other part: "are they saved?"
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/27/15 03:35 PM

Since the topic of discussion isn't EENS, I'm not going to respond.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/27/15 03:36 PM

Now you say:

Originally Posted by RomCatholic


"1) a valid marriage between Christians that is NOT a sacrament

2) a sacramental marriage between Christians that is not valid"

There is no difference between validity and sacramentality.


Note: no example given.

Before you said:
Originally Posted by ajk
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
"What is clearly stated is that between baptized spouses the sacrament of marriage obtains if and only if the marriage is valid. Makes sense."

You are clearly misinterpreting what it states.

What!!?? Are you saying this is incorrect: " between baptized spouses the sacrament of marriage obtains if and only if the marriage is valid"? Do not read more into this. It says between baptized spouses every valid marriage is a sacrament and every marriage that is a sacrament is valid. (see below at the end)...
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
You should stop pressing the issue.
What issue? I think you're imagining things.
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
You are clearly in error.
Still to be determined: who is the you.
You can demonstrate the perceived error in my statement by simply giving an example of either of the following:
1) a valid marriage between Christians that is NOT a sacrament
2) a sacramental marriage between Christians that is not valid


You seem incapable of accepting something that's true as true unless YOU say it. This complicates dialog.

Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/27/15 03:37 PM

I gave you two conditions which they can be saved.
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/27/15 03:41 PM

"You seem incapable of accepting something tha's true as true unless YOU say it. This complicates dialog."

Not true at all. You are simply misinterpreting what the canon in question states.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/27/15 04:19 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
You emphasize the part about the council of Trent, yet neglect the part which states: "are apt to convey the false impression that the priest is the minister of the Sacrament, are not primitive, at any rate in this form, and are only to be found in Rituals of comparatively recent date."

What the priest says is absolutely irrelevant.

""ego conjungo vos in matrimonium""

The rite of marriage no longer uses this phrase. Furthermore, it is not proof of anything.
But it did use the phrase!

This is not much of an answer as it just states emphatically and repeatedly ad nauseam, as ukaz, conclusions you parrot from selective sources. I certainly emphasized my point but I neglected nothing and made a point of stating it explicitly, thus:

Originally Posted by ajk
The first entry does have the comment:

Quote
The words of the priest, "Ego vos in matrimonium conjungo", which, though sanctioned by the Council of Trent, are apt to convey the false impression that the priest is the minister of the Sacrament, are not primitive, at any rate in this form, and are only to be found in Rituals of comparatively recent date.
[emphasis added]


See, you didn't even have to look it up for yourself. As I said,
Originally Posted by ajk
This is the are you going to believe me or your own eyes proof. "Ego vos in matrimonium conjungo." Not even the Byzantine ritual has such an explicit statement.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/27/15 04:23 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
I gave you two conditions which they can be saved.
I must have missed them. Please repeat or direct me to their location.

You mean "The only way for this to happen is through formal conversion, or through an unexpected miracle."

So I'd say presently no formal conversion and no miracle. So are they "saved"? Yes/No/Maybe?
Posted By: RomCatholic

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/27/15 04:57 PM

I am done with this conversation. It's a waste of my time.
Posted By: ajk

Re: Ministers of Matrimony - 12/28/15 12:42 PM

Originally Posted by RomCatholic
I am done with this conversation. It's a waste of my time.

We, no doubt to the relief of some, perhaps many, have come to an end --- almost. I've learned a lot from the exchanges. I thought I'd summarize from my perspective and objective, and relate what may appear as off topic discussion to the subject of the thread.

1) OUR RESPONSIBILITY I believe Eastern Catholics have a unique perspective and duty to be both spiritually and intellectually Eastern and Catholic. We are living the reality of Church unity. One would think that the Latin West and non-Catholic East would flock to us for an explanation as to how that most desired unity is lived and understood. Now that we've stopped laughing, that of course doesn't happen. Are we truly living the reality of unity; do we have an explanation, a sound theology to explain it, a clear and strong voice even and especially under what can appear as hostile intentions? We must engage divergent positions in our Catholic communion, especially those that are strident in misconceptions and even to some degree repugnant. We should be prepared to explain our tradition and inform our own fellow Catholics of what we hold as proper. East and West, both within and without the Catholic Church, need to engage in more than their separate (or even combined) Kumbaya Moments of theological considerations.

2) ECCLESIOLOGY The question of the Minister of Marriage goes, through Sacramental theology to Ecclesiology, hence extra Ecclesiam nulla salus (without/outside the Church no salvation).
Originally Posted by RomCatholic
Since the topic of discussion isn't EENS, I'm not going to respond.
It does of course but the view he has argued of the spouses as *sole* ministers leads to the conundrum that those who (though he opted out rather than answering) can't be really admitted as "saved" are also dispensing the sacrament of marriage even in some cases of common law marriage. Here is where a healthy dose of Nemo dat quod non habet (No one can give what he does not have) is needed. Theology must explicitly have the Church present in some way where and when the sacraments are celebrated.

3)A THEOLOGY OF MARRIAGE is needed that unites East and West not just within a Catholic-Orthodox dialog (thought that's a reasonable start) but within the larger consideration of all the baptized. The Latin west has already gone there, to an inclusion of all who are baptized into Christ. But the Sacraments are dispensed by the Church and formed and informed by Natural Law, Positive Divine Law, and Church Law and this can provide a structure for a comprehensive approach, in particular to Marriage.

4) FINAL CONSIDERATION The Sacrament of Marriage -- or lack thereof -- touches most if not all of us, directly or through family friends etc.. The Church owes us a clear, unambiguous theological foundation for understanding the mind of the Church, uniting and reconciling East and West, and from which details and specifics are consistently formulated. I believe that theological foundation should be based on a theology of Person and the Church, Ecclesiology as the Body of Christ and His Spouse, the Temple of the Holy Spirit, and the mon-archē of the Bishop.

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