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Author Topic: Obstacle #1: What God has joined together...  (Read 15398 times) Average Rating: 0
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lubeltri
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« Reply #45 on: November 30, 2007, 10:04:58 AM »

Great explanation Carole.


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So, George, does Orthodoxy have a concept of "natural" marriage between those who are not baptized or not Orthodox? In other words, did marriage exist before Jesus Christ?

In Catholic terms, a natural marriage is between unbaptized persons or between a baptized and unbaptized person. In other words, marriage is part of the natural law.

Then Christ came along---Christ and his bride, the Church. A sacramental marriage (marriage as a sacrament) is a marriage between two baptized persons (even if not Catholic).
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« Reply #46 on: November 30, 2007, 10:11:03 AM »

We ask the saints for their intercessions, right?  So after they have fallen asleep, are they still alive?  If not, why would we ask them to pray?  It's the same idea with a spouse who has passed away.  Death is not the end of life, thanks to Christ.  So if death doesn't hold any power over us then how could it hold any power over a marriage which, as previously stated, only God can put asunder?  It doesn't.

We hold that they end because the parties can no longer share themselves fully---spiritually and physically. They are separated from their bodies.

Also, since marriage is a glimmer of the great light of the beatific vision, sort of a little bit of heaven on Earth, when you get to heaven, that little light is swallowed by the big one.
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« Reply #47 on: November 30, 2007, 10:12:59 AM »

The Catholic Church (in charity I assume) assumes that all marriages are "valid" (meeting Canon Law regrading marriage) unless cause is shown and proven to the contrary.  It isn't even a statement on the "validity" of the Sacraments of the Orthodox (or any other group) as the same assumption is made for all marriages that take place outside of the Church.  Provided, of course, that neither of the parties are Catholic and subject to Catholic Canons regarding marriage.
I just want to check that I understood you. Are you saying that Roman Catholics have the option of simply having a Civil marriage not blessed by the Church, and this is just as "valid" for the Catholic Church as the Sacrament of Matrimony?


So would a married couple converting to Orthodoxy then have to have their marriage reviewed/examined to see if it is acceptable under the Orthodox law/rules that the couple is submitting to?  Or would the couple be remarried in the Orthodox jurisdiction that they are being received into?
Just as reception by Profession of Faith or Chrisimation completes what is lacking in a convert's baptism which took place outside the Church, the Church can sanctify marriages without having to remarry a couple.
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« Reply #48 on: November 30, 2007, 10:16:51 AM »

I just want to check that I understood you. Are you saying that Roman Catholics have the option of simply having a Civil marriage not blessed by the Church, and this is just as "valid" for the Catholic Church as the Sacrament of Matrimony?

Nope, it would be null and void. Catholics must be married in the Church unless they get dispensation.
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« Reply #49 on: November 30, 2007, 10:18:27 AM »

I just want to check that I understood you. Are you saying that Roman Catholics have the option of simply having a Civil marriage not blessed by the Church, and this is just as "valid" for the Catholic Church as the Sacrament of Matrimony?

No.  I may have been unclear.  Please pardon me if that is the case.  The Catholic Church assumes that all marriages between non-Catholic persons to be valid.  For instance my husband and I were married by a notary pubic in a civil ceremony.  Neither of us were Catholic at the time.  Thus we were not subject to the Canons as regard marriage.  So our marriage is assumed to be valid.

If, for the sake of discussion, I had been Catholic before our marriage and we still married in a civil ceremony the marriage would not be granted the charitable assumption of validity.  In order to normalize our marriage we would have to have it convalidated by the Church.

This is why the last sentence in the quoted paragraph reads:  "Provided, of course, that neither of the parties are Catholic and subject to Catholic Canons regarding marriage."

I am sorry for any misunderstanding my poorly worded paragraph provided. 

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« Reply #50 on: November 30, 2007, 11:17:46 AM »

We hold that they end because the parties can no longer share themselves fully---spiritually and physically. They are separated from their bodies.

Also, since marriage is a glimmer of the great light of the beatific vision, sort of a little bit of heaven on Earth, when you get to heaven, that little light is swallowed by the big one.

I would think that a married couple would share themselves better not being confined to the body, if that is the case.  Forgive me, I'm not well read on the Orthodox position of life after death, but I'm not sure I agree with you here. 
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« Reply #51 on: November 30, 2007, 11:46:36 AM »

I would think that a married couple would share themselves better not being confined to the body, if that is the case.  Forgive me, I'm not well read on the Orthodox position of life after death, but I'm not sure I agree with you here. 

Well, I'm not Orthodox.  Smiley I was giving a Catholic view to illustrate why marriage ends in death for us. Marriage is a divinely instituted earthly institution created for both reproduction and the self-giving love to another that is an image of Christ and his Church. For us, when these two purposes are superseded when we are in heaven, marriage is no longer necessary. Our relationships with God and others are on a whole other plane.

Blessings.
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« Reply #52 on: November 30, 2007, 12:11:55 PM »

I suspect my fiancee would kill me shortly thereafter if I tried to pull something like that. Cheesy

Yes, I thought by the pile of marriage books she was reading as I left the parish would indicate that.  One wedding and a funeral. LOL
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« Reply #53 on: November 30, 2007, 12:13:28 PM »

From what I remember of our wedding this spring, the only thing we did in the narthex was exchange rings.  At some point our priest asked us if we were promised to another, but I can't remember if that was in the narthex or not.  Needless to say, I was a bit excited and nervous at the time so my memory isn't so good.  But no, there were no vows, no "til death do us part."  As I've reminded Mr. Y, he can't get rid of me that easily.     Cheesy

You are correct. The Rite of Betrothal, in which rings are exchanged as a sign of commitment and devotion to one another and no vows are exchanged.
My bad.  Roll Eyes
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« Reply #54 on: November 30, 2007, 12:26:55 PM »

Our relationships with God and others are on a whole other plane.

Blessings.

Agreed.  Smiley  And blessings to you as well!
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« Reply #55 on: November 30, 2007, 03:28:40 PM »

Hello,

The Catholic Church doesn't view it as contractual either (on the contrary, it is a covenant), but we view the ministers of the Sacrament as the two people being wed. The reason an annulment can be recognized (that is stating that the Sacrament never occurred - and I do think that it is granted far more readily than should be in America) is because one of the ministers, through various reasons, did not have the proper intention for the Sacrament (a key component of any Sacrament's validity).

A couple of things to consider.  What you are speaking of is only relevant to the Latin Church.  If I am incorrect, hopefully Deacon Lance will correct it, but in the Eastern Catholic Churches only a priest (i.e NOT a deacon) may marry a couple as their theological understanding of marriage is the same as the Orthodox understanding. 
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« Reply #56 on: November 30, 2007, 03:43:52 PM »

You are correct. The Rite of Betrothal, in which rings are exchanged as a sign of commitment and devotion to one another and no vows are exchanged.
My bad.  Roll Eyes 

It's O.K.  There can be a bit of confusion because sometimes (depending on state law) Orthodox clergy are forced to ask a consent question before beginning the betrothal service.  This is not part of the service.

If someone wants a fairly clear and comprehensive look at Orthodox perspective on Marriage (as a sacrament), they should read:

"Marriage: An Orthodox Perspective" by Fr. John Meyendorff

Not only does it address all the questions raised here about the Orthodox views on these various Marriage questions, but it also happens to be the only book on marriage within arm's reach, so it's easy for me to refer to it!
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« Reply #57 on: November 30, 2007, 04:47:51 PM »

It's O.K.  There can be a bit of confusion because sometimes (depending on state law) Orthodox clergy are forced to ask a consent question before beginning the betrothal service.  This is not part of the service.

If someone wants a fairly clear and comprehensive look at Orthodox perspective on Marriage (as a sacrament), they should read:

"Marriage: An Orthodox Perspective" by Fr. John Meyendorff

Not only does it address all the questions raised here about the Orthodox views on these various Marriage questions, but it also happens to be the only book on marriage within arm's reach, so it's easy for me to refer to it!

I'll just add "The Sacrament of Love," by Paul Evdikinov.
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« Reply #58 on: November 30, 2007, 05:32:09 PM »

If someone wants a fairly clear and comprehensive look at Orthodox perspective on Marriage (as a sacrament), they should read:
"Marriage: An Orthodox Perspective" by Fr. John Meyendorff

I second that and add Preserve Them, O Lord by Fr. John Mack.  This book is sort of a workbook for married or nearly married couples, but there are several excellent articles in the supplemental reading section, all reprints from AGAIN magazine. 

Has anyone read St. John Chrysostom's On Marriage and Family Life?  If so, what are your thoughts on this? 
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« Reply #59 on: November 30, 2007, 05:34:17 PM »

Has anyone read St. John Chrysostom's On Marriage and Family Life?  If so, what are your thoughts on this? 

Very good.  It's a compilation of sermons of his, some from his commentaries on Epistles, some which were only about marriage.  But it was very helpful for my fiancee and I before we got engaged.
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« Reply #60 on: November 30, 2007, 05:49:01 PM »

Very good.  It's a compilation of sermons of his, some from his commentaries on Epistles, some which were only about marriage.  But it was very helpful for my fiancee and I before we got engaged.

Oh good.  (Haven't been disappointed by St. John yet.   Smiley)  I've had my eye on this book for a while but haven't been able to find it locally.  I'll have to order it from St. Isaac's, I think.
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« Reply #61 on: November 30, 2007, 11:46:02 PM »

Hello,

As far as Jesus' conversation with the Sadducees, I don't believe He's contradicted Himself here:

People will neither marry nor be given in marriage... but it doesn't say they are not married.  I'll have to break out my Greek New Testament and check the verb, but to me this means that there are no wedding ceremonies in heaven.  It doesn't say there are no marriages there. 
But that was exactly the question the Sadduccees asked. They asked if she would be married and Heaven (sort of sarcastically since they denied the resurrection of the dead) and if so who's wife would she be. Not if she could wed another, but which one of her many marriages would be recognized in Heaven. Jesus, by his answer, indicates that we do not keep marriage through death.
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« Reply #62 on: November 30, 2007, 11:50:47 PM »

Hello,

Logical fallacy:  red herring.

That is not the issue here; the question, which you raised earlier, is whether the Orthodox view or the Latin one is merely contractual.  You keep claiming that the Orthodox one is because it involves no vows, yet won't address the fact that the language used in establishing a Latin marriage is legal (covenants, vows, and promises) and the method of Latin divorce is also legal in nature (declaring that the marriage was void at its inception).  If it walks like a duck, looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, why are you trying to tell me it's a moose?
No, not a logical fallacy ... just merely tangentially off-topic. That is easily remedied. I have started a new thread on this topic: http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,13672.0.html
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« Reply #63 on: November 30, 2007, 11:50:47 PM »

Hello,
But that was exactly the question the Sadduccees asked. They asked if she would be married and Heaven (sort of sarcastically since they denied the resurrection of the dead) and if so who's wife would she be. Not if she could wed another, but which one of her many marriages would be recognized in Heaven. Jesus, by his answer, indicates that we do not keep marriage through death.

Then marriage is truly an odd sacrament, the only one that doesn't leave its mark in the Kingdom.
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« Reply #64 on: November 30, 2007, 11:53:55 PM »

Hello,

Then marriage is truly an odd sacrament, the only one that doesn't leave its mark in the Kingdom.

Could do with the fact that it is a Sacrament of Vocation. Could be maybe be said of the Priesthood - the Sacrament of Holy Orders does leave a permanent and indelible mark on the soul, but will there be a need for the ministerial priesthood in Heaven? I'm actually asking, but it might be best to start a new thread on it.
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« Reply #65 on: December 01, 2007, 12:03:39 AM »

Hello,
But that was exactly the question the Sadduccees asked. They asked if she would be married and Heaven (sort of sarcastically since they denied the resurrection of the dead) and if so who's wife would she be. Not if she could wed another, but which one of her many marriages would be recognized in Heaven. Jesus, by his answer, indicates that we do not keep marriage through death. 

Actually, a few of the Orthodox authors I've read have come to a different conclusion (which I agree with). The essence of the Sadduccees question was not "marriage" but rather "cohabitation."  In their desire to trip up Jesus, they were asking which brother gets to "sleep" with her, since "they've all had her."  That's the context to which he replies that they are like "angels in heaven."  If there was no marriage in heaven, then we'd have no problem with widows and widowers marrying after the death of their spouse; on the contrary, since only God makes the union, only God (and not death) can break it - they are still married (forever), however marriage manifests itself differently in the kingdom than what we're used to here.

This is especially true considering that the bond of love that we form with our spouses is unique on earth, but in Heaven the greater Love of Christ will envelope us all.  We don't lose our memory of earthly life, nor do we lose our character (the saints are proof of this).  But our interactions with one another will be different - permeated by the omnipresent Love of Christ.
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« Reply #66 on: December 01, 2007, 12:07:08 AM »

Hello,

Actually, a few of the Orthodox authors I've read have come to a different conclusion (which I agree with). The essence of the Sadduccees question was not "marriage" but rather "cohabitation."  In their desire to trip up Jesus, they were asking which brother gets to "sleep" with her, since "they've all had her."  That's the context to which he replies that they are like "angels in heaven."

That's interesting. Doesn't it say right before or after in the Scriptures that what they were trying to trip Jesus up with their denial of the resurrection of the body?
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« Reply #67 on: December 01, 2007, 12:12:53 AM »

Hello,

That's interesting. Doesn't it say right before or after in the Scriptures that what they were trying to trip Jesus up with their denial of the resurrection of the body?

Uh-huh.  Marriage has nothing to do with the body; but cohabitation does Wink
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« Reply #68 on: December 01, 2007, 04:10:36 PM »

I'm still a little confused.  Do the Orthodox believe that when a man and a woman marry each other, they are married for eternity (like the Mormons, for example)?  Do they believe that Jesus' words about no marrying or giving in marriage in Heaven to simply mean that no one will be having sexual intercourse or entering into new marriages?  If someone gets divorced on Earth, will he or she still be eternally married to his or her first spouse in Heaven?
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« Reply #69 on: December 01, 2007, 04:43:23 PM »

Uh-huh.  Marriage has nothing to do with the body; but cohabitation does Wink

Marriage DOES have to do with the body (otherwise, why not same sex marriage?).  The difference is that cohabitation ONLY has to do with the body (secular research backs this up: cohabitators are far more likely to divorce).

Another thing on the verse in question: the pretense for the marriage is the Levirite marriage, marrying a dead brother's widow to produce children (otherwise such a marriage with a sister in law is forbidden, Leviticus 18,16; 10,21).  In such a case there is no unitive aspect, it is totally procreative, and then not for the couple (hence Onan's problem with it).

I'm still a little confused.  Do the Orthodox believe that when a man and a woman marry each other, they are married for eternity (like the Mormons, for example)?  Do they believe that Jesus' words about no marrying or giving in marriage in Heaven to simply mean that no one will be having sexual intercourse or entering into new marriages?  If someone gets divorced on Earth, will he or she still be eternally married to his or her first spouse in Heaven?

 Sad This is not an academic question for me.

Btw they don't marry each other.  The Church marries them.
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« Reply #70 on: December 01, 2007, 04:45:03 PM »

(secular research backs this up: cohabitators are far more likely to divorce).
Hmm. The research I've done says that 0% of people who never married are divorced. Grin
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« Reply #71 on: December 01, 2007, 04:50:43 PM »

Hmm. The research I've done says that 0% of people who never married are divorced. Grin

A large number of them end up marrying, and their marriages end in the divorce (the "we'll first see how it works out then we'll marry" deception.  It doesn't work).

If you look at those who cohabitate, and never marry, the stats are even worse.

A study on children of cohabitators found they have exactly the same problems, and at the same levels of occurance, as those of children of the divorced.  This even when the cohabitition was continuing over years and said parents were still together.
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« Reply #72 on: December 01, 2007, 05:13:22 PM »

Right. Another example of a self-fulfilled prophecy. Many times the reason for cohabitation is fear that the couple will end up splitting up and that there will be a messy divorce. It's no wonder that many times that is exactly what happens.
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« Reply #73 on: December 01, 2007, 05:33:39 PM »

Right. Another example of a self-fulfilled prophecy. Many times the reason for cohabitation is fear that the couple will end up splitting up and that there will be a messy divorce. It's no wonder that many times that is exactly what happens.
Right. this is what I was thinking in reference to the Catholic situation in the USA of easy annulments. We see reports that the rate of cohabitation with no marriage among Catholic couples has increased recently. And  the number of marriage annulments granted in the USA  have skyrocketed since Vatican II.  Could it be that a Catholic couple might be asking themselves, what is the use of going through the bother and expense of getting married, when down the line there is always the possibility that a Church tribunal may declare that there never really was any marriage in the first place?
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« Reply #74 on: December 01, 2007, 07:29:39 PM »

Well, the tribunals can be overruled on appeal. Most American declarations of nullity appealed to Rome are overturned.
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« Reply #75 on: December 01, 2007, 10:02:28 PM »

Well, the tribunals can be overruled on appeal. Most American declarations of nullity appealed to Rome are overturned.
If you are speaking here about appeal to the Roman Rota, first of all, appeals take anywhere from 11 to 27 years. Secondly, the actual number involved is extremely small. For example, ten cases (USA) were decided favorably in 1986, and ten in 1987. This contrasts with more than 40,000 annulments granted in the USA for each of those years.
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« Reply #76 on: December 01, 2007, 10:10:54 PM »

If you are speaking here about appeal to the Roman Rota, first of all, appeals take anywhere from 11 to 27 years. Secondly, the actual number involved is extremely small. For example, ten cases (USA) were decided favorably in 1986, and ten in 1987. This contrasts with more than 40,000 annulments granted in the USA for each of those years.

Indeed, appeals are rare because usually both parties desire a declaration of nullity (or one does not care).
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« Reply #77 on: December 02, 2007, 10:46:40 AM »

I'm still a little confused.  Do the Orthodox believe that when a man and a woman marry each other, they are married for eternity (like the Mormons, for example)?  Do they believe that Jesus' words about no marrying or giving in marriage in Heaven to simply mean that no one will be having sexual intercourse or entering into new marriages?  If someone gets divorced on Earth, will he or she still be eternally married to his or her first spouse in Heaven?

Marriage is only binding in this life. It does not exist in the next life. This is the Orthodox teaching.
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« Reply #78 on: December 02, 2007, 11:02:30 AM »

Marriage is only binding in this life. It does not exist in the next life. This is the Orthodox teaching.
Evidence?
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« Reply #79 on: December 02, 2007, 11:07:13 AM »

Well, the tribunals can be overruled on appeal. Most American declarations of nullity appealed to Rome are overturned.

And how many have the energy and resources to do that?

In Illinois, most custody decisions are overturned or modified on appeal.  But after years in the court system, who has the stomach for more?
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« Reply #80 on: December 02, 2007, 11:45:29 AM »

Evidence?

Are you being serious OZ? Well just in case you are and to further expand on my answer for the other poster:

But those who are counted worthy to attain that age and the ressurection of the dead , neither marry or are given into marriage . Nor can they die anymore for they are equal to the angels and are sond of God, being sons of the ressurection". Lk 20.35-36

Blessed Theophylact comments on the above verse- "Marriage is for the help of the mortal and for the replenishing of what is lacking. But where nothing is lacking , what need is there for replenishing?"


"For in the ressurection they neither marry nor are given in marriage but are like the angels of God in heaven" Matt 22.30

St. John Chrysostom comments on the above verse-"After Adam was created there was no reason for marriage. It had not yet appeared.. As long as they were unconquererd by the devil and respected their own Master, virginity also continued. But when they became captives and took off this garment and sustained the dissolution deriving from death, the curse, the pain and toilsome existence, then together with these enters marriage..Do you see when marriage had its beginning? From the disobedience, from the curse, from death. For where there is death, there also is marriage.  Whereas when the first does not exist, then neither does the second follow."
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« Reply #81 on: December 02, 2007, 12:39:25 PM »

But those who are counted worthy to attain that age and the ressurection of the dead , neither marry or are given into marriage . Nor can they die anymore for they are equal to the angels and are sond of God, being sons of the ressurection". Lk 20.35-36

"For in the ressurection they neither marry nor are given in marriage but are like the angels of God in heaven" Matt 22.30
*yawn* I think we've covered before that these marriages are not dissolved, only that new ones are not created.

I'm tired of this subject.
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« Reply #82 on: December 02, 2007, 12:46:20 PM »

Is this not a settled question in EO? This and the sinless Mary debate, I am surprised to see such disagreement.
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« Reply #83 on: December 02, 2007, 02:36:15 PM »

Is this not a settled question in EO? This and the sinless Mary debate, I am surprised to see such disagreement.
Me too. Huh
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« Reply #84 on: December 02, 2007, 04:30:29 PM »

*yawn* I think we've covered before that these marriages are dissolved, only that new ones are not created.

I'm tired of this subject.
Yep and Yep.
To summarize:
Marriage in the Orthodox Church is a Sacrament administered by the Church.
Marriage in the non-Orthodox Churches is a Sacrament administered by the married couple themselves.
Marriage in the Orthodox Church is not a contract or covenant. No vows are exchanged.
Marriage in the non-Orthodox Churches is a contract which ends when one or both of the parties dies.
Second marriages of widows and widowers in the Orthodox Church use the penitential rite of matrimony since they are a concession to human sin.
Non-Orthodox Churches do not have a penetential rite of matrimony.

Is this not a settled question in EO? This and the sinless Mary debate, I am surprised to see such disagreement.
Ignorance doesn't mean the question is not settled. It just means someone is ignorant.
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« Reply #85 on: December 02, 2007, 05:03:11 PM »

Quote from:  ytterbiumanalyst
*yawn* I think we've covered before that these marriages are not dissolved, only that new ones are not created. I'm tired of this subject.
Quote from:  ozgeorge
Yep and yep.

Yup.  Thanks for the succinct outline, ozgeorge.  Smiley



[Edited for clarification and spelling.]
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« Reply #86 on: December 03, 2007, 02:28:20 AM »

*yawn* I think we've covered before that these marriages are not dissolved, only that new ones are not created.

I'm tired of this subject.

I'm a newbie here, sorry if you written on this subject and I havent caught it.  I just want some clarification as to what you mean that marriages in the next life are not dissolved. Are you saying that the marital union continues uninterrupted in the next life? And also clarification on this subject about those who have remarried. thanx
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« Reply #87 on: December 03, 2007, 12:54:55 PM »

The subject has been hashed out several times, among them this thread, started in 2003:
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,1444.0.html
This may be a good place to start, and many of your questions may be answered by what has already been posted.
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« Reply #88 on: December 03, 2007, 02:31:44 PM »

So what ends the marriage?  Well, for starters, death does not (the church prefers that widows/widowers remain single, and if they marry again they are to do so in the penitential second marriage service). 

I dont understand this one. I lost my wife not too long ago. I was faithful and loving and patient to the end. I cant remarry with the full blessing of the Church.
But the guy whose marrige broke up because he was a bum, can.

Doesnt seem right.   
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« Reply #89 on: December 03, 2007, 02:39:49 PM »

I dont understand this one. I lost my wife not too long ago. I was faithful and loving and patient to the end. I cant remarry with the full blessing of the Church.
But the guy whose marrige broke up because he was a bum, can.

Doesnt seem right.   

That's not what I or anyone else sad.  If you were married in the church, the Church prefers that your marriage remain the only one.  If your wife dies, then the preference is to remain a widower.  But you can remarry.  If your wife leaves you, then the preference is to not re-marry.  But you can remarry.  If you leave your wife, then the preference is to not remarry.  But you can remarry.

The guy who is a bum whose marriage breaks up will probably be required to reconcile himself with the Church before even receiving communion, let alone getting remarried.  You wouldn't have to do any such thing in order to be remarried.  So your hypothetical situation doesn't even apply.

Even if you do get remarried, and the priest uses the penitential second marriage, it is still the Church blessing the union.  Chances are, if it's the woman's first marriage, that the full Marriage service will be used instead of the penitential one.  Even if she is a widow, and you use the second service, it is still not an analogous situation to the "bum" who gets divorced, has to go to confession and be reconciled, and then have the penitential service for his second marriage.

The only things that absolutely prevent remarriage (outside of certain deformities that are often not considered impediments anymore) are those conditions or actions that separate oneself from the Church - if you're out of communion, you can't do any sacrament other than Confession (assuming you were already baptized/chrismated) - or that bind you even more closely to the potential spouse (within 6 degrees of relationship). 
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