Mary’s Advocates response: Annulment cases in Scranton diocese on rise
- Posted by Mary's Advocates
- On September 9, 2016
- annulment, catholic, divorce, law, marraige
“The Citizen’s Voice” in PA publicized that the number of annulment cases is rising.
Mary’s Advocates Comment
Any high-income-earning man should ask the Church to require his abandoning wife who got an annulment to correct the record in the civil forum. This fits the Church’s job description, because an annulment decree is supposed to instruct a party of her moral and civil obligations toward the other party (Mitis Iudex c. 1691 §1). In the civil forum, a man who was never married does not owe half of all the property he accumulated and spousal support to a woman that was nothing more than a live-in-girlfriend (who was mentally incapable of marriage or committed fraud).
Pennsylvania law says marriage is a contract (23 §1102) and parties that belong to a Church institution marry in according to the rules and customs of the institution (Title 23 §1503(a)(6)(b)). Popular grounds for church annulment are the same as grounds for civil annulment in Pennsylvania. PA Title 23 §3304(a)(3) lists “serious mental disorder or otherwise lacked capacity to consent or did not intend to consent to the marriage.” PA Title 23 §3305(a)(3-4) shows “under the influence of alcohol or drugs and fraud.” These grounds for annulment are included in the Catholic canon law 1095 and 1101 (lack of sufficient use of reason, grave psychic anomaly, and simulation).
With the non-profit organization Mary’s Advocates, I uphold marriage against no-fault divorce, and the questions about nullity of marriage need to be raised at the time of separation and divorce so that just outcomes can be obtained for those that married in the Church.
The Citizen’s Voice
Annulment cases in Scranton diocese on rise after fee waiver
BY DAVID SINGLETON / PUBLISHED: SEPTEMBER 9, 2016
The number of marriage annulment petitions filed in the Diocese of Scranton so far this year already exceeds the 2015 total and is on track to be the highest in years.
The spike coincides with Canon Law revisions Pope Francis made last September aimed at simplifying and speeding up an annulment process many Catholics found complicated and plodding. The new standards, including elimination of administrative processing fees, took effect Dec. 8, the start of the church’s Year of Mercy.
Figures released by the diocese show divorced Catholics initiated 171 annulment cases between Jan. 1 and Aug. 19, compared to 164 for all of last year.
If the pace continues — at an average of just over five new cases per week — the year-end total will approach 270. That would easily be the most since at least 2010, the earliest year for which the diocese provided totals.
Since December, the diocese has experienced a “significant increase”
… see full story HERE