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Life in Christ

575

2390

In a so-called

free union,

a man and a woman refuse to give

juridical and public form to a liaison involving sexual intimacy.

The expression “free union” is fallacious: what can “union” mean

when the partners make no commitment to one another, each exhibiting

a lack of trust in the other, in himself, or in the future?

The expression covers a number of different situations:

concubinage, rejection of marriage as such, or inability to make

long-term commitments.

183

All these situations offend against the

dignity of marriage; they destroy the very idea of the family; they

weaken the sense of fidelity. They are contrary to the moral law.

The sexual act must take place exclusively within marriage. Out­

side of marriage it always constitutes a grave sin and excludes

one from sacramental communion.

2391

Some today claim a “

right to a trial marriage

” where there

is an intention of getting married later. However firm the purpose

of those who engage in premature sexual relations may be, “the

fact is that such liaisons can scarcely ensure mutual sincerity and

fidelity in a relationship between a man and a woman, nor, espe­

cially, can they protect it from inconstancy of desires or whim.”

184

Carnal union is morally legitimate only when a definitive commu­

nity of life between a man and woman has been established.

Human love does not tolerate “trial marriages.” It demands a to­

tal and definitive gift of persons to one another.

185

IN BRIEF

2392

“Love is the fundamental and innate vocation of every

human being” (

FC

11).

2393

By creating the human being man and woman, God

gives personal dignity equally to the one and the other.

Each of them, man and woman, should acknowledge

and accept his sexual identity.

2394

Christ is the model of chastity. Every baptized person

is called to lead a chaste life, each according to his

particular state of life.

183 Cf.

FC

81.

184 CDF,

Persona humana

7.

185 Cf.

FC

80.

1631

2353

1385

2364