So my girlfriend posed an interesting question to me. She asked why Catholics will go as far as to fight the government to ban gay “marriage” but will not even take a stand, outside of the Church, against divorce. She said if the Church believes both to be non-existent, why only fight gay “marriage” and not divorce?
I’d suggest reading this section of the Catechism of the Catholic Church.
Catholics are allowed to civily divorce because the church does not consider it a dissolution of the marriage. The real question is, “Why don’t they fight against remarriage after divorce, which is considered gravely sinful”.
The Church does not say a civil divorce is non-existent and nor does it say all divorced parties have sinned.
CCC 2386 It can happen that one of the spouses is the innocent victim of a divorce decreed by civil law; this spouse therefore has not contravened the moral law. There is a considerable difference between a spouse who has sincerely tried to be faithful to the sacrament of marriage and is unjustly abandoned, and one who through his own grave fault destroys a canonically valid marriage.
CCC 2383 The separation of spouses while maintaining the marriage bond can be legitimate in certain cases provided for by canon law.
If civil divorce remains the only possible way of ensuring certain legal rights, the care of the children, or the protection of inheritance, it can be tolerated and does not constitute a moral offense.
Hard choices I guess… Choosing how to judge others?? Gracious folks have many frailties: confusions with regard to “sex” , what it’s for, orientations, appropriate methods, etc., etc… I sometimes wonder why the privacy of our homes needs to be so public. There is not a single person in the world who is absolutely sure when it come to the decisions we face in life. Willingness to accept homosexuality(same sex marriage) is a big, big decision. A decision that Christ alone is capable of making and if you think his guidance in this area is absolutely clear then I envy you. For me it’s not so clear. I believe “sex” to be a God made, idiot proof method of procreation, it can also be enjoyable. I am married for 30 years with 4 children. Who am I to judge a person’s frail attempt at love. I feel sorry that gays have not found what I have found through my Catholic values. On one hand I believe same gender sexual activity to be inappropriate but not same gender love, of course. And on the other hand I can only feel a sense of emptiness for them because they confuse love with sex; but I will not judge their choice. Maybe idiot proof is a poor choice of words.The need to gain social acceptance is simply additional frailty. Maybe the answer is to not accept nor judge. I just hope we can put the cat back in the bag and keep private matters private. Each individual should have the character to stand alone in his or her choices if they think their choices are right. Not ask for public acceptance. I have many friends and I don’t choice my friends with regard to how they live their private lives. If friend asked me to support something that they knew I felt could be immoral, well then they would be my friend no longer. Friends who don’t ask me to make moral judgments on their behalf will remain friends regardless of “same gender relationship” private matters. And divorce, well, it’s something altogether different. I hope this will encourage continued friendly debate.
However, it is important that we all understand that the Church did fight against “no fault divorce” when it reared its ugly head in the 20th century.
That is much different that the limited reasons the Church acknowledges as necessary for protection of the innocent-- such as abuse of the spouse or children.
Agree with others…divorce is not the issue, but re-marriage. And in those cases (of remarriage) they are taken individually and determined by the Church if the first marriage was a valid sacrament or not…meaning, was God truly involved in the union of the couple.
The Church did fight against divorce, and especially against no-fault divorce, which essentially renders the marriage vows meaningless, breakable by either party at will.
And acceptance of divorce has already done far greater damage to marriage than same sex marriage, which is just the logical consequence of the acceptance of contraception.