Interesting ! Catholic marriage and concerned laws – Jose Paul (N Delhi)

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  1. If a Latin catholic groom or a bride marries a Latin bride or a groom, in any Church, they require clearance (non-objection certificate) from both their respective parish churches.
  2. If a Syrian Catholic groom or bride marries a Syrian bride or a groom, in any Church, they require clearances (non-objection certificate) from both their respective parish Churches.
  3. If Latin or Syrian groom marries a non Christian or non-Catholic girl, in their respective church, the clearance is needed only for the groom from his church and the girl needs no clearance from any priest either from a catholic priest or the priest of the bride’s religion. Very often even the announcement of the marriage bans are done away with. Sometimes the marriages are held in the privacy of just witnesses. I had the privilege of attending as witness in at least two private weddings, one in Latin in the north and the other in Syrian Church in Kerala. The girl had to promise that their children will be brought up in catholic faith.
  4. If a Latin or Syrian girl marries a non- Christian or non-Catholic boy, the situation is the same as above.The boy does not need any non objection certificate from any body. But he has to promise to bring up the children in Catholic fath.
  5. If a Syrian Groom marries a Latin Girl in the Syrian Church, does she need to bring a clearance certificate at all from the Latin Church?  Why? She does not belong to this autonomous Church. She belongs to a different autonomous Church. It is equivalent to marrying a non- Christian girl. Does she have to give a promise that she will bring up their children as Syrian Catholics? There is no more one Catholic church. In essence they are two different autonomous Churches according to the present changes envisaged by the Hierarchy..
  6. If the same marriage takes place in a Latin church, Why should the boy need to bring a certificate from the Syrian Church?  Does he has to promise that their children will bring up their children in Latrin Rite? These certificate problems are only for believers of Catholic Church. If non- Catholics can come to the church to get married without a certificate, why should a believer of different autonomous Church bring a non-objection certificate.
  7. The same questions apply to a Syrian girl who marries a Latin boy. Man and women are equal in the eyes of Jesus Christ. Both the souls are equally valuable for Him. Remember that patriarchy is no more relevant in our society. The Syrian community comes from a community with traditions of matriarchy. Again the court order which Mary Roy of Kottayam succeeded in getting equal rights for Syrian Christian daughters is also there for us to consider.
  8. We have never heard of a situation in which a Latin Catholic Church or the clergy rejecting the non-objection certificate of marriage from any Syrian Christ or priest so far.
  9. But it now become mandatory according to the Syro-Malabar Synod for the Syrian couples to produce  non objection certificate of marriage from a Syrian church only of Eparchy to get married in any Syrian Church in any part of the country. Why this is necessary?
  10. Let any Catholic priest of any rite anywhere in the world bless and confer sacraments to any catholic of any rite in the world. If  a candidate is otherwise eligible, by virtue of the common priesthood and communion with the universal Church, the priest should have the freedom to celebrate the sacrament of marriage without any re-certification or dispensation, so as to avoid unnecessary procedures and harassment. Let all certificates and document issued by the priest of any rite, be accepted as it is by the priest of the other rites any were in the world. We are all part of one and only Catholic church under one and only Pope. Let us not divide the Catholic Church and Clergy by rite. Let us not scandalise the faithful, preferably the youth of 21st century with rite issue/rite politics. (This is para is a copy of a note from one of the opinion sent by a faithful in face book “Riteissue”
  11. Last month, my children attended a non Christian marriage in a hotel. The marriage was solemnised in the hotel. There was no religious priest and religious function. The new priest was the Registrar of that locality (If you call him priest) He was present with his register. The wedding ceremony was signing the register in presence of all the guests.  After that, the groom and bride exchanged rings and garlanded each other. That is all. Today, in this 21st century, the Catholic youth who are educated and aware of their rights and duties and also having real commitment to the Crucified Jesus are fully aware that marriage is a contract between the couple and the loving Jesus whom they adore. But when they see that a fourth party harassing them in the culmination of this divine union, they may decide to do away with all the impediments. Be sure that Jesus will be with them to bless their union. Let us not push our youngsters to such a predicament. So please do what the Christ will want all these rites to do to bring in happiness for the church, the couples and the community of faithful.
  12. This whole analysis of the marriage situation is done with no bias to any particular autonomous Church but only to be clear of the facts for laity. I wish that if there is any wrong statement in the above, the concerned clergy will help us to understand the rules and procedures and also the rationale for those practices and rules.

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