Can Maria Shriver's marriage be annulled?


#1

I feel so sorry for Maria Shriver S. and her children, for what they must be going through! What her husband did frankly makes me a little embarrassed to be Catholic! Maria herself allegedly was a "cafeteria Catholic" and I wonder if her choosing to discard some of the Catholic teachings about abortion and homosexuality might have weakened her faith and her marriage, possibly leading her husband to also feel free to discard important Catholic teachings such as those regarding adultery. I'm not excusing Arnold's behavior, just considering the potential effects of choosing to ignore any Catholic doctrine in one's life - how it could rebound on you in unexpected ways.

Anyway, I'd like to know if Maria's marriage could be annulled by a priest, even though it was a long marriage, due to the complete travesty it had become from Arnold's callous deception of her and their children, spanning a decade or more, leading to irreparably broken trust. I hope, for her sake, it can be annulled.

Michaela1


#2

NO marriage can be “annuled” by anyone - not a priest, not the Church. You have a very incorrect understanding of the Nullity Process.

Every marriage is assumed valid until the Marriage Tribunal proves otherwise. And that is all they do - they determine if a valid marriage ever took place to begin with. And the years following the wedding have no bearing whatsoever on the state of the marriage at the time it took place. They do not make anything null - they only state if was null or valid at the time it occurred based on the facts of the case.

She is married to him - like it or not - forever. Unless it is determined by a Tribunal that the marriage was never valid to begin with.

~Liza


#3

[quote="Michaela1, post:1, topic:241447"]
Anyway, I'd like to know if Maria's marriage could be annulled by a priest, even though it was a long marriage, due to the complete travesty it had become from Arnold's callous deception of her and their children, spanning a decade or more, leading to irreparably broken trust. I hope, for her sake, it can be annulled.

[/quote]

I suggest you obtain a copy of the book Annulment: The Wedding That Was by Michael Smith Foster. You do not properly understand what a decree of nullity is and isn't.

A decree of nullity is **not **based on bad behavior in a marriage. A valid marriage between the baptized cannot be dissolved or "annulled."

The marriage might be declared null for a variety of reasons, but those would be an impediment or defect of consent or intent at the time the vows were exchanged, not things that happen during a marriage.


#4

Additionally, is it really our business to gossip about what may have gone wrong in her marriage?


#5

I don't blame Maria's cafeteria style approach to Catholicism on her husbands lack of fidelity. Arnie was always a player. He had the good looks and the body to match. His Hollywood/celebrity lifestyle was well known. The Kennedy's approach to Catholic teachings is also well known. Her Uncles are very pro choice and unashamed. They both grew up as liberal Catholics rather than holding fast to traditional Catholic morals. I Just think that Arnie gave in to lust. If you have seen the pictures of the woman he fathered a child with...no offence...but she is not all that attractive. Why would someone who had a beautiful wife sleep around with anyone else?(not that that is an excuse of any kind if Maria was a plain Jane) I've heard it said, he had an ego and the women needed to be unattractive so that he would look so much better.

The fact is...we may never know exactly what cause him to cheat on Maria. What we do know is that adultery has been committed. We know they have separated..for now and divorce lawyers have been commissioned. We don't know how long this has been going on and we don't know if Maria knew of his affairs all along and just turned a blind eye as to not hurt his career as an actor or politician. Now that his political career is over....I guess he felt he could "come out of the closet" so to speak with his public confession...and she no longer has to cover for him.

What we need to do is pray for them both and especially the children involved in all of this. It must be very painful to see your father publically humiliated like this and your families private life dragged through the press and public eyes.


#6

A little off the subject, but wasn't one of Ted Kennedy's marraiges annuled because he said something to the effect that he wasn't sincere when he made his vowels? I am well aware that I could be wrong about that, but something tells me that actually happened. Does anyone else remember this or am I "misremembering."


#7

It may be helpful to look at annullments of marriages as a Sacrament the way you might look at another Sacrament...say Baptism.

If it was going to be determined if a person's Baptism was valid or not...the church would need to examine who performed the Baptism, was water used, what words were used and things of that nature. What happened at the time of Baptism is what you would examine to discern if a valid Baptism took place.

You would not look at events in a person's life 20 years after the Baptism to decide if their Baptism was valid would you? Same with Matrimony. Events during the time of Marriage are what is examined...not after. Hope this helps understand a little better it's not an exact analogy of course but may help.


#8

Tribunal proceedings are confidential, and no one has access to the actual documents and the grounds on which the nullity case went forward are not public information. So what Kennedy may have said to someone, or what the news media may say, and the actual detailed facts of the case are likely two different things.

Such a defect in consent or intention and deception on the part of one party could indeed be grounds for nullity. However, a Tribunal investigation requires much more than simply someone claiming that they weren’t sincere.


#9

None of us know Maria or Arnold and are not in their confidence so we could not take any sort of guess to know either of them approached their marital vows. So , we could not have any sort of clue as to whether the have an invalid marriage or not.
Pray for them.


#10

Maria herself allegedly was a “cafeteria Catholic” and I wonder if her choosing to discard some of the Catholic teachings about abortion and homosexuality might have weakened her faith and her marriage, possibly leading her husband to also feel free to discard important Catholic teachings such as those regarding adultery.

REALLY? that’s ugly. :frowning:


#11

[quote="Michaela1, post:1, topic:241447"]
I feel so sorry for Maria Shriver S. and her children, for what they must be going through! What her husband did frankly makes me a little embarrassed to be Catholic!

Michaela1

[/quote]

Hi Michaela,

This business of absorbing "Catholic guilt" from the media based on the high-profile behavior of individuals is damaging to us and to our public standing. Note how no other group is willing to do this. No ethnic group does. Do people of Austrian or German descent feel "a little embarrassed" by Schwarzenagger? I doubt it. If that's the standard, then we should all always be embarrassed, because someone in one of our "groups" is always misbehaving, 24/7.

God Bless,
Joan


#12

This statement is both more than a little uncharitable and discrediting to both parties.


#13

[quote="Joan1969, post:11, topic:241447"]
Do people of Austrian or German descent feel "a little embarrassed" by Schwarzenagger?

[/quote]

Perhaps not many, but I do have a friend in Bavaria who was embarrassed for us when we elected him governor. :rotfl:


#14

"We?" :p I didn't elect that guy governor ever! Eesh! Glad he's gone....


#15

Well, she is a Kennedy. I’ll wager that she gets the attention she needs.


#16

[quote="Joan1969, post:11, topic:241447"]
Do people of Austrian or German descent feel "a little embarrassed" by Schwarzenagger? I doubt it. If that's the standard, then we should all always be embarrassed, because someone in one of our "groups" is always misbehaving, 24/7.

[/quote]

I'm an Austrian-American, and I don't see how Arnold's ethnicity has anything to do with his personal actions, so I'm only embarrassed for him and his family, not for Austrians or Austrian-Americans.


#17

Baptism is fundamental different, because consent on the party of the baptized is not necessarily required (e.g., infants), whereas it is in the case of marriage. In other words, there is nothing on the part of the party receiving the sacrament that makes the sacrament not valid. In the case of marriage, it is just the opposite. The validity of the marriage is almost always due to an action on the part of the party (allegedly) receiving the sacrament.


#18

I realize this and thank you for clarifying. Maybe I was not clear in my post I hope this helps: To determine if a sacrament is valid, the church needs to determine the conditions AT THE TIME the sacrament was performed. I used Baptism as a very crude example not very clear I guess. Many people think you can determine a marriage annulment by the behavior of a spouse years later and that’s not really the case.


#19

[quote="Michaela1, post:1, topic:241447"]
I fe

Anyway, I'd like to know if Maria's marriage could be annulled by a priest, even though it was a long marriage, due to the complete travesty it had become from Arnold's callous deception of her and their children, spanning a decade or more, leading to irreparably broken trust. I hope, for her sake, it can be annulled.

Michaela1

[/quote]

no power on earth can dissolve a valid marriage.
either party, if there is no chance of reconciliation, can petition the Church to investigate the marriage to determine if it was valid from its inception--which has nothing to do btw with anything that happened afterwards. since those investigations are confidential, rightly, there is no way any third party can or should speculate since it involves making assumptions about matters of which we know nothing


#20

you do not know the grounds for the annulment in that case, unless you were one of the parties, or on the tribunal, or on the canon law court that reviewed the case, so please don’t speculate.

as to comparing the parties in this case with their family members, or members of their ethnic group, and then using those comparisons to make global assumptions about their faith, good intentions, moral life or any other aspect of their life of which you can have no knowledge, unless you are their confessor, that is way, way out of line. Leave it to the news media they are doing a fine job trashing people on their own w/o help from “alleged Christians” here. Do you want to be judged on the basis of public actions of your family members or ethnic group?


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