12 July 2010

Marriage: Sacraments and Politics

Mary E. Hunt

Catholics have sacramental understandings of marriage and ordination to which they are entitled. But the institutional church is not entitled to foist those on the rest of the population. On ordination they do not even try. On marriage I suspect they will fail.

Marriage is a many-splendored thing. There are myriad definitions of what is a dynamic and changing phenomenon. It is not hard to recall when women were considered inferior partners in marriage, when marriage between persons of differing racial groups was not allowed, indeed when rape was permitted in marriage. Social institutions change, but the need for community and the imperative of finding loving, just and generous ways of organizing ourselves as a society remain constant. Marriage is one among several ways to do that.

Read the full article by Mary E. Hunt in the National Catholic Reporter.

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