Wedding ritual

Hi
A protestant friend of mine revealed to me that he holds the view that a cohabitation can be equall in the eyes of God to a marriage.

He support his views by claiming that the bible didnt give us any example of how a wedding ritual is supposed to be.

He said: Yes the bible speaks about wedding feasts and that before the couple cohabitated they were bethroated to each other but the very thing which units them in the eyes of God is the consumatio of the marriage, i.e. sexuall intercourse.

I said yes somehow you are right because also the Catholic Church teaches that you can dissolve a marriage as long as no sexuall intercourse has taken place.

My question is therefore to what extent are we obliged to hold a ritual and in what form?

Correct me if i am wrong but the church teaches that the sacrament of marriage is not given to the couple by the priest, but it is the couple that gives it to eachother.

So why is the ritual necessary and what proofs can we provide that a ritual is necessary?

Co-habitation is just another word for Fornication and THAT is forbidden by God.

"What God has joined............"

I can't imagine starting off my marriage without having it blessed and witnessed in God's house, after all, Jesus is the Center of any marriage:thumbsup:

[quote="MaryandJoseph, post:2, topic:178281"]
Co-habitation is just another word for Fornication and THAT is forbidden by God.

"What God has joined............"

I can't imagine starting off my marriage without having it blessed and witnessed in God's house, after all, Jesus is the Center of any marriage:thumbsup:

[/quote]

I agree with you the marriage is a picture of Christ and his Church and who wanna hace just a cohabitation relationship with Christ?

Well joking can ease up the mind. What i mean is that he claims that there is no ritual expressed in the bible so thats why his protestant mind interprets that as marriage is not necessary but the wows by the spouses would be enough and it could take place before some witnesses but a priest and church is not necessary according to him.

That is totally contrary what we as catholics believe but he doesnt accept any teachings from the catholic church tradition thats why im asking if there is any other proofs than tradition.

The church isn't 'necessary' for marriage otherwise it would mean that no one who gets married in front of a judge is married -- and the Church certainly doesn't teach that.

What is necessary is for Catholics to get married in the way the Catholic Church decrees and that is

[LIST=1]
*]after a period of preparation
*]after investigation to make sure there are no impediments
*]in Church
*]in front of a Priest/Deacon/and in certain cases a lay person appointed by the Bishop with Rome's approval
*]with the Rite approved by Rome
[/LIST]
1 & 2 are never skipped. 3, 4, & 5 can be dispensed by the Bishop to allow a Catholic to marry outside the Church, by a judge or non-Catholic clergy with the ritual that's approved by the law or the other religion.

Non-Catholics are under no such obligation. If they're religious they have to conform to what their religion requires but in most cases that means a civil marriage is OK.

[quote="anjoh66, post:3, topic:178281"]
I agree with you the marriage is a picture of Christ and his Church and who wanna hace just a cohabitation relationship with Christ?

Well joking can ease up the mind. What i mean is that he claims that there is no ritual expressed in the bible so thats why his protestant mind interprets that as marriage is not necessary but the *wows by the spouses would be enough and it could take place before some witnesses but a priest and church is not necessary according to him.
*

That is totally contrary what we as catholics believe but he doesnt accept any teachings from the catholic church tradition thats why im asking if there is any other proofs than tradition.

[/quote]

Actually, what I bolded, that is correct for protestants/non-baptized. Catholics are bound to Catholic canon law regarding sacraments. Catholics do not believe that any non-Catholics are also bound to that. 2 protestants that get legally married (without impediments) the Catholic church considers married.

It is only in the latin rite that the couple marries each other...in the eastern churches, the priest marries them.

[quote="anjoh66, post:3, topic:178281"]
I agree with you the marriage is a picture of Christ and his Church and who wanna hace just a cohabitation relationship with Christ?

Well joking can ease up the mind. What i mean is that he claims that there is no ritual expressed in the bible so thats why his protestant mind interprets that as marriage is not necessary but the wows by the spouses would be enough and it could take place before some witnesses but a priest and church is not necessary according to him.

That is totally contrary what we as catholics believe but he doesnt accept any teachings from the catholic church tradition thats why im asking if there is any other proofs than tradition.

[/quote]

Your friend is not Catholic so he does not accept that The Catholic Church has authority from Christ to see that the sacraments are administered properly. In a sense your friend is correct. In western Christianity the sacrament of matrimony is conferred through an exchange of vows between the man and the woman. That is required by the nature of marriage. But the Church and state legitimately impose additional regulations for validity on both natural and sacramental marriage. The Church can dispense a couple from the obligation to follow the Catholic form of marriage (and you could say she does for all non-Catholics).

Sometimes the following passage from Matthew (where Jesus speaks to Peter) is used to demonstrate the authority the Church has to make such regulations.

Matt 16:19 I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven."

[quote="anjoh66, post:1, topic:178281"]
Hi
A protestant friend of mine revealed to me that he holds the view that a cohabitation can be equall in the eyes of God to a marriage.

He support his views by claiming that the bible didnt give us any example of how a wedding ritual is supposed to be.

He said: Yes the bible speaks about wedding feasts and that before the couple cohabitated they were bethroated to each other but the very thing which units them in the eyes of God is the consumatio of the marriage, i.e. sexuall intercourse.

I said yes somehow you are right because also the Catholic Church teaches that you can dissolve a marriage as long as no sexuall intercourse has taken place.

My question is therefore to what extent are we obliged to hold a ritual and in what form?

Correct me if i am wrong but the church teaches that the sacrament of marriage is not given to the couple by the priest, but it is the couple that gives it to eachother.

So why is the ritual necessary and what proofs can we provide that a ritual is necessary?

[/quote]

The ritual is necessary because it is required by the religion of the person(s) entering Marriage. In other words a Catholic is required to follow the Catholic Marriage Ritual required by Canon Law. A Jew would be required to follow the ritual required by Jewish Law, etc.

[quote="anjoh66, post:3, topic:178281"]
I agree with you the marriage is a picture of Christ and his Church and who wanna hace just a cohabitation relationship with Christ?

Well joking can ease up the mind. What i mean is that he claims that there is no ritual expressed in the bible so thats why his protestant mind interprets that as marriage is not necessary but the wows by the spouses would be enough and it could take place before some witnesses but a priest and church is not necessary according to him.

That is totally contrary what we as catholics believe but he doesnt accept any teachings from the catholic church tradition thats why im asking if there is any other proofs than tradition.

[/quote]

Would any of the following help?

The woman at the well (John 4:16-19): She was living with a man, but clearly Jesus didn't think that meant she was married to the man. This refutes the claim that "cohabitation can be equal in the eyes of God to a marriage":

16 Jesus said to her, "Go call your husband and come back."
17 The woman answered and said to him, "I do not have a husband." Jesus answered her, "You are right in saying, 'I do not have a husband.'
18 For you have had five husbands, and the one you have now is not your husband. What you have said is true."
19 The woman said to him, "Sir, I can see that you are a prophet.

The wedding at Cana: If Jesus attended the wedding, clearly He saw it as something important (John 2:1-2):

1 On the third day there was a wedding in Cana in Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there.
2 Jesus and his disciples were also invited to the wedding.

The marriage of Tobiah and Sarah (Book of Tobit, Chapters 7-8): It mentions the daughter being given in marriage by the father, a marriage contract being written up, the parents leading the groom to the wedding chamber, and a fourteen-day wedding feast. See usccb.org/nab/bible/tobit/tobit7.htm and usccb.org/nab/bible/tobit/tobit8.htm . Sounds like ritual to me.

Yes acctually i remembered and quoted that passage from John 4 which has many interessting aspects.

Jesus is teaching her and us that merely cohabitation is not ok.
He says: “You are right in saying, 'I do not have a husband.'
For you have had five husbands, and the one you have now is not your husband. What you have said is true.”

Now looking at the formula of the sentence ir is clear that he accepted the former 5 as being her lawful husbands, we dont know what happened to those husbands were they dead or alive? We dont know, but the important thing is that they were her husbands.

Now she is asking Jesus to accept her when she is asking for the water of life.

What Jesus is doing is commanding her to marry correctly to this man she has then he will accept her into his church, but before that he can not do.

It could be interpreted as that she has left the fifth man and was not correctly divorced and was living with the sixth, but it is not very likely.

We must not forget that divorce was allowed in the mosaic law.

[quote="anjoh66, post:1, topic:178281"]
He said: Yes the bible speaks about wedding feasts and that before the couple cohabitated they were betrothed to each other but the very thing which units them in the eyes of God is the consumation of the marriage, i.e. sexual intercourse.

[/quote]

If your friend truly believes this, then he must also say that a cohabiting couple who engage in sexual intercourse are in fact married, and are bound to each other for life. I don't think that most cohabiting couples see themselves as bound for life.

[quote="anjoh66, post:1, topic:178281"]
Correct me if i am wrong but the church teaches that the sacrament of marriage is not given to the couple by the priest, but it is the couple that gives it to eachother.

[/quote]

You are wrong (or at least: incomplete) in your understanding of Church teaching. The Catechism 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.

tee

[quote="anjoh66, post:1, topic:178281"]
Correct me if i am wrong but the church teaches that the sacrament of marriage is not given to the couple by the priest, but it is the couple that gives it to eachother.

[/quote]

The couple administers the Sacrament to each other (in the Latin rite), but in order to be valid their vows must be witnessed by the local bishop or pastor, or by a priest or deacon delegated by them (or, in special circumstances, by a lay person delegated by the bishop). From the Code of Canon Law:

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. 1112 §1. Where there is a lack of priests and deacons, the diocesan bishop can delegate lay persons to assist at marriages, with the previous favorable vote of the conference of bishops and after he has obtained the permission of the Holy See.

§2. A suitable lay person is to be selected, who is capable of giving instruction to those preparing to be married and able to perform the matrimonial liturgy properly.

Can. 1116 §1. If a person competent to assist according to the norm of law cannot be present or approached without grave inconvenience, those who intend to enter into a true marriage can contract it validly and licitly before witnesses only:

1/ in danger of death;

2/ outside the danger of death provided that it is prudently foreseen that the situation will continue for a month.

If either partner is Roman Catholic, a "marriage" contracted without meeting these conditions would be invalid (nonexistent) due to lack of form.

The point is that “in the beginning it was not so.”

In Genesis, Adam and Eve don’t just go at it, or go live together spontaneously. God “gives away” Eve to Adam, and Adam accepts her as his wife. (And vice versa; it’s not in the Bible but it is in Jewish and Christian tradition that the bride must consent or no marriage occurs.)

If God went to the trouble of inventing a little bit of ritual, and Jesus went to the trouble of corroborating what the Father intended by it “in the beginning”, I think we really ought to pay attention to what has been revealed to us by all this.

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