Thursday, June 16, 2016

Pope Francis: "the great majority of our sacramental marriages are null."

Mr. and Mrs. Tiger probably aren't

Almost a year ago, Pope Francis enacted sweeping changes to the annulment process--the mechanism by which it is determined whether or not a marriage is valid--in essence making annulment easier. The changes were justified on the grounds of "mercy"--the implicit claim being that for those with sufficient grounds to believe that their marriages were invalid, the process of discovering or pronouncing on it would be less costly and lengthy. We wrote about it here, here and here.

The Pope also allegedly implied at the time that he thought half of all marriages were invalid.

Some thought that was just typical off-the-cuff Pope Francis hyperbole. 

Now he has upped the ante. Yesterday, he said:

The great majority of people who believe they are married, really are not. Their marriages were never valid in the first place. 

"Great majority" is his phrase.

Not some.

Not many.

Not even the majority.

But the great majority.

Another way of putting that is the leader of the Catholic Church just said that the great majority of Catholics would be perfectly within their rights to annul their marriages right now.

Obviously, we're living in Opposite World.

From Catholic News Agency, a few hours ago:
Rome, Italy, Jun 16, 2016 / 02:56 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Pope Francis said Thursday that the great majority of marriages today are not valid, because couples do not enter into them with a proper understanding of permanence and commitment. 
“We live in a culture of the provisional,” the Pope said in impromptu remarks June 16. After addressing the Diocese of Rome’s pastoral congress, he held a question-and-answer session. 
A layman asked about the “crisis of marriage” and how Catholics can help educate youth in love, help them learn about sacramental marriage, and help them overcome “their resistance, delusions and fears.” 
The Pope answered from his own experience. 
“I heard a bishop say some months ago that he met a boy that had finished his university studies, and said ‘I want to become a priest, but only for 10 years.’ It’s the culture of the provisional. And this happens everywhere, also in priestly life, in religious life,” he said. 
“It’s provisional, and because of this the great majority of our sacramental marriages are null. Because they say “yes, for the rest of my life!” but they don’t know what they are saying. Because they have a different culture. They say it, they have good will, but they don’t know.” 
He spoke of his encounter with a woman in Buenos Aires who “reproached” him. She said that priests study for the priesthood for years and can get permission to leave the priesthood to marry and have a family. For the laity, this woman said, “we have to do the sacrament for our entire lives, and indissolubly, to us laity they give four (marriage preparation) conferences, and this is for our entire life.” 
Pope Francis said that marriage preparation is a problem, and that marital problems are also linked to social situations surrounding weddings. 
He recounted his encounter with a man engaged to be married who was looking for a church that would complement his fiancée’s dress and would not be far from a restaurant. 
“It’s social issue, and how do we change this? I don’t know,” the Pope said. 
He noted that as Archbishop of Buenos Aires he had prohibited marriages in the case of “shotgun weddings” where the prospective bride was pregnant. He did this on the grounds there was a question of the spouses’ free consent to marry. 
“Maybe they love each other, and I’ve seen there are beautiful cases where, after two or three years they got married,” he said. “And I saw them entering the church, father, mother and child in hand. But they knew well (what) they did.” 
Pope Francis attributed the marriage crisis to people who “don’t know what the sacrament is” and don’t know “the beauty of the sacrament.” 
“They don’t know that it’s indissoluble, they don’t know that it’s for your entire life. It’s hard,” the Pope said. 
He added that a majority of couples attending marriage prep courses in Argentina typically cohabitated. 
“They prefer to cohabitate, and this is a challenge, a task. Not to ask ‘why don’t you marry?’ No, to accompany, to wait, and to help them to mature, help fidelity to mature.” 
He said that in Argentina’s northeast countryside, couples have a child and live together. They have a civil wedding when the child goes to school, and when they become grandparents they “get married religiously.” 
“It’s a superstition, because marriage frightens the husband. It’s a superstition we have to overcome,” the Pope said. “I’ve seen a lot of fidelity in these cohabitations, and I am sure that this is a real marriage, they have the grace of a real marriage because of their fidelity, but there are local superstitions, etc.” 
“Marriage is the most difficult area of pastoral work,” he said.


  1. He spoke of his encounter with a woman in Buenos Aires ...

    He recounted his encounter with a man engaged to be married...

    He noted that as Archbishop of Buenos Aires...

    And I saw them entering the church, father, mother and child in hand....

    ...a majority of couples attending marriage prep courses in Argentina...

    He said that in Argentina’s northeast countryside...

    What an astoundingly parochial man. To him, the world is Argentina, and Argentina is the world.

  2. Add to this his recent comment that his thoughts and comments "are the magisterium". I would say what on earth did we do to deserve this nightmare of a pope, but I already know. Maybe God will have mercy on us and do something about him.

  3. I can't believe I'm asking this but what the devil IS this man?

  4. Such a small intellect, such a squalid world view. No belief in the supernatural it seems.

  5. Francis the Destroyer doing what he does best!

  6. This statement last year was what convinced me that the Catholic Church is simply no longer a serious organization. Marriage is one of the most basic human arrangements. Muslims, Hindus, pagan tribesmen - all of them know what marriage is in their traditions and recognize it as a real thing. And all humans have had this ability to see a marriage and know it's real. But Pope Jar-Jar declares that that's just too simple and unsophisticated for the modern "Catholic" Church - now what looks like and acts like a marriage really is no such thing, because maybe someone's mind was wandering during class one day, and he didn't catch what the teacher said. The pagans do better than this.

    1. Lol jar-jar, honestly though i really dont understand a single thing he says, all these statements whats his point. Agree about the pagans, at least they (real ones like julian the apostate or plotinus) believed in absolute truth

      Also, with what he calls "shotgun weddings", who is he to judge? Where us his mercy? These people dont the catholic church they somoly get civil marriahe but they yearn for God but Bergoglio turns them away.whose the palagian here?

    2. These people dont need the catholic church to look good they simply can get civil marriage. but they yearn for God , and seek both forgiveness and blessing to make a family. but Bergoglio turns them away.whose the palagian here?

      Sorry typos, this phone is killing me, galaxy s5

  7. There are TWO equal errors presented by this Pope. They are two sides of the same counterfeit coin.

    1: The Sacrament of Holy Matrimony depends upon the participants' perfect understanding and knowledge. Absent this perfection it is not Sacramental and there is no Grace. Grace depends upon us "individually and alone", rather than the individual in UNION with the Church in her primary role of "binding and loosing on earth as in heaven" through the authority and judgement granted Her by Almighty God.

    That is the current contention.

    2: The Sacrament is not holy and has no efficacious power or meaning. It does not depend upon the participants' efforts to ADVANCE in knowledge, understanding and holiness in union with Jesus through His Bride; to grow in holiness through the power of the holy Sacrament. Sinful life remains unchanged.

    This is what was presented in Amoris Latetitita.

    Two sides of the same coin. Our Sacramental life emptied of all meaning from both sides of the Sacrament.

    And all of it goes to the very heart of our suffering Church, the Sacraments through which we live. And we are alone, having been abandoned by the Shepherds. Speak Prophets! NOW is the time for clarity, for we are much confused.

  8. So the great majority of marriages are null, but couples cohabiting or living in adulterous relationships are in a state of grace?

  9. The Vicar of Christ has just redefined what "fornication" is and determined it is not always a mortal sin- sometimes its "a real marriage"!
    God help us!