Christ is ascended!
Reasons for annulment listed in Judging Invalidity ©2002, By Fr. Lawrence G. Wrenn Since these are things that turn up in every marriage at one time or another, it supports the claim that just about any marriage can be annulled by a R. Catholic tribunal in the USA.
Working out a couple of hours a day in the gym.
Being described as arrogant and selfish with an "I don't need anyone else" attitude.
Saving one's salary in a personal account.
Seeming to be obsessed with one's body (personal appearance).
Ignoring one's parents on one occasion when they came for a visit.
Seeing the world as his apple. (Psychiatric expert's term)
Never being satisfied with a gift given by one's spouse.
Feeling chronically disenfranchised in one's (spousal) relationship.
Not achieving the desired companionship and intimacy one wants in marriage.
Suffering abandonment issues over a father who died. Protecting herself by putting a hard shell around herself.
Suffering from low self-esteem, self-absorption, and a need for attention.
Lacking emphathy and fearing intimacy.
Comparing oneself to others and always finding them happier. About a month before the wedding he drove his mother to a family reunion, leaving her all alone to make preparations for the wedding.
The psychiatric expert described the respondent as porcupinish. He didn't want people near him; surprises he liked even less. It was noted in the proceedings, however, that he was in love with another woman.
The petitioner's mother always resented her. The mother was unreasonably strict and hypercritical.
Wow, those sound like a list of grounds for civil divorce based upon mental cruelty or the infamous 'irreconcilable differences' back in the 'good old' fault-based divorced days in the US state laws.
Unless one believes in sorcery or predestination, how on earth are any of these a basis for determining the invalidity of a marriage from the beginning or ab initio. That isn't even creative legalism at work.
If these are the grounds that a Catholic Marital Tribunal really uses, no Catholic can ever, ever criticize the Orthodox with a straight face for the grounds we have established to obtain an ecclesiastical divorce without being a total hypocrite. As you know, I rarely get worked up over differences between us but this one is preposterous unless there is more here than meets the eye. Since no Catholic has posted to the contrary or in addition, it seems as if this may be the truth. Ugh.
If you read through the list you will see that it is a list pertaining to one man. Toward the end of the list is what I would call the "clincher": " It was noted in the proceedings, however, that he was in love with another woman." Here's another one: "Not achieving the desired companionship and intimacy one wants in marriage." and "Feeling chronically disenfranchised in one's (spousal) relationship. " That first one is subtle but to me, knowing how these things are phrased, it speaks volumes, and the latter sentence makes it quite clear. Both of these are strong impediments to sacramental marriage. The first points to adultery and the second points to the refusal to engage in conjugal relations, and the rest indicates that neither one of them, if you read the last line, were in any way prepared for marriage...from the start.
I guess that we can agree to disagree for if you accept such nuances, a good lawyer, skilled in canon low or just civil law could argue a strong case before a tribunal that ANY marriage performed in the Church can be nullified ex post facto. That sticks in my craw.
I find it better to acknowledge the weaknesses and frailties that can afflict us in our human condition and allow for divorce as is the Orthodox position. Aren't we utilizing the very same human failings in our approaches and are they really mutually exclusive?
At least the Orthodox one is honest. Following this reasoning out to the hypothetical, I wonder if you could create a theology in the West that did away with the need to confess sin on the basis that the action that 'was' the sin may have been, or was a product of some extraneous third party factor or force, like the mother in law? It sounds like the explaining away of bad acts that drove me crazy working as a prosecutor in family court over the years. No one would have to take responsibility for bad consequences. There are relativistic Catholic theologians positing just such rubbish in the west.
The people who send out suicide bombers tell the whole world what they have done. I am not sure that honesty should be the "test" of a good thing here either.
Sure it is: at least those going into suicide bombing know what they are getting themselves into.
IF they are indeed the same set of complaints and one gets a divorce blessed by the Church and the other gets an annulment...then for me, it seems more faithful to toe the hard line laid out in the gospels and epistles.
Changing hypocrisy into corban isn't toeing the hard line. We have that on great authority. Mark 7:11-13.
The "Borgias" has a lot interesting scenes on this topic. Lucretia's marriage was just annulled, because her husband refused the aid promised in the bride price, but offiically because of impotance. A few episodes back Pope Alexander scolds his present mistress for suggesting that his son (from another mistress) Cesare, the cardinal, marry for an alliance:"He is a cardinal. He can never marry." Odd, as IIRC the first episode opens with Cesare in a brothel, later carrying on an affair and killing the husband, and in real life he had an affair with his brother Geoffrey's wife. Such a scandal that he should marry!
Unfortunately, recent news tells us that clerical concubines for the Vatican's "all celibate" priesthood did not go out of fashion with the Borgias.
Charles VIII of France showed up in this episode, which invokes this tidbit:
In 1476, Louis was required to marry the pious Joan of France (1464–1505), the daughter of his second cousin, Louis XI, the middle-aged "Spider King" of France. After Louis XII's predecessor Charles VIII died childless, Louis' marriage was annulled in order to allow him to marry Charles’ widow, the former Queen-Consort, Anne of Brittany (1477–1514), who was the daughter and heiress of Francis II of Brittany, in a strategy meant to integrate the duchy of Brittany into the French monarchy.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Louis_XII_of_France#Marriages
The annulment, described as "one of the seamiest lawsuits of the age", was not simple, however. Louis did not, as might be expected, argue the marriage to be void due to consanguinity (the general allowance for the dissolution of a marriage at that time). Though he could produce witnesses to claim that the two were closely related due to various linking marriages, there was no documentary proof, merely the opinions of courtiers. Likewise, Louis could not argue that he had been below the legal age of consent (fourteen) to marry: no one was certain when he had been born, with Louis claiming to have been twelve at the time, and others ranging in their estimates between eleven and thirteen. As there was no real proof, however, he was forced to make other arguments.
Accordingly, Louis (much to the horror of his Queen) claimed that she was physically malformed, providing a rich variety of detail precisely how, and that he had therefore been unable to consummate the marriage. Joan, unsurprisingly, fought this uncertain charge fiercely, producing witnesses to Louis' boast of having "mounted my wife three or four times during the night." Louis also claimed that his sexual performance had been inhibited by witchcraft; Joan responded by asking how he was able to know what it was like to try to make love to her.
Had the Papacy been a neutral party, Joan would likely have won, for Louis' case was exceedingly weak. Unfortunately for the Queen, Pope Alexander VI (the former Roderic Borja) was committed for political reasons to grant the divorce, and accordingly he ruled against Joan, granting the annulment. Outraged, she reluctantly stepped aside, saying that she would pray for her former husband, and Louis married the equally reluctant former Queen, Anne.
After the death of Anne, Louis then married Mary Tudor (1496–1533), the sister of Henry VIII, the King of England in Abbeville, France, on 9 October 1514, in an attempt to conceive an heir to his throne and perhaps to further establish a future claim for his descendants upon the English throne as well. He was ultimately unsuccessful.
It is not too fine a line between lip service and mockery.
I should amend this to say that I do not begrudge Orthodoxy her tradition. I simply see no reason for the Catholic Church to follow suit.
Orthodoxy is the Tradition of the Catholic Church.
And I'm still at a loss: what purpose to you see in calling a divorce an annullment, in particular given the destruction to the institution (not to meantion the Faith and credibility of the Church) by doing so?