The Church 's Teaching On Divorce Essay

1211 Words Jul 7th, 2016 null Page
In the Catholic Church, one learns that divorced members of the Church who remarry, without the previous marriage being annulled, are forbidden to participate sacramentally in the Church, including participation in the Sacrament of Reconciliation and more importantly, not being able to receive the Holy Eucharist. They are also not allowed to hold positions of leadership in the parish or public ministerial roles such as Eucharistic Minister or Lector. Because of this exclusion and ostracization, a 2011 Pew Research Center survey shows that almost one third (33%) of all Catholics who leave the Church do so because of the Church’s teaching on divorce (Pew). Lawler quotes Fr. Kenneth Himes who comments that, “the single biggest reason people cease active participation in the Church is that they have found themselves in irregular marital situations and feel themselves unwanted by the Church” (105). Pope Francis, in his document Amoris Laetitia, or “The Joy of Love”, recognized that divorced and remarried couples, what he also calls “irregular situations”, can either be cast off, as it seems the Church has done for all these centuries, or it can reinstate the lapsed faithful to a place of wholeness (Francis 296). As he emphatically states, “No one can be condemned forever, because that is not the logic of the Gospel!” (297). The question becomes, can the Catholic Church provide a pastoral approach towards those faithful who after failing in their first sacramental marriage and…

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