Life in Christ
The Lord Jesus insisted on the original intention of the
Creator who willed that marriage be indissoluble.
the accommodations that had slipped into the old Law.
Between the baptized, “a ratified and consummated mar
riage cannot be dissolved by any human power or for any reason
other than death.”
of spouses while maintaining the marriage
bond can be legitimate in certain cases provided for by canon
If civil divorce remains the only possible way of ensuring certain
legal rights, the care of the children, or the protection of inheritance, it can
be tolerated and does not constitute a moral offense.
is a grave offense against the natural law. It claims
to break the contract, to which the spouses freely consented, to live
with each other till death. Divorce does injury to the covenant of
salvation, of which sacramental marriage is the sign. Contracting
a newunion, even if it is recognized by civil law, adds to the gravity
of the rupture: the remarried spouse is then in a situation of public
and permanent adultery:
If a husband, separated from his wife, approaches another
woman, he is an adulterer because he makes that woman
commit adultery; and the woman who lives with him is an
adulteress, because she has drawn another’s husband to
Divorce is immoral also because it introduces disorder into
the family and into society. This disorder brings grave harm to the
deserted spouse, to children traumatized by the separation of their
parents and often torn between them, and because of its contagious
effect which makes it truly a plague on society.
176 CIC, can. 1141.
177 Cf. CIC, cann. 1151-1155.
178 St. Basil,
73, 1: PG 31, 849-852.