Why don't all churches have a way "out" of toxic marriages?

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coyote

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Re: Why don't all churches have a way "out" of toxic marriages?
« Reply #20 on: December 12, 2018, 04:40:34 PM »
SoT,
Haven't seen you on the boards for a while. While not derailing the thread I'd like to ask anyone if they have read "Sermon on the Mount" by Fox. It basically says what SoT is saying and what I said earlier.
How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours.
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The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Do you understand?
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Choose not to be harmed and you won’t feel harmed. Don’t feel harmed and you haven’t been. -Marcus Aurelius

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DJCleo

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Re: Why don't all churches have a way "out" of toxic marriages?
« Reply #21 on: December 12, 2018, 04:45:59 PM »
Hi DJCleo:  I'm certainly no authority on annulments, but I listen frequently to Catholic radio.

One of the things that is stressed in Catholicism is that marriage is a Sacrament and must be taken very seriously; it is a promise made before God.  When there is alleged abuse, disagreement, or such in a marriage, there must be very careful discernment to see that both parties' personal views are taken into account.  Certainly, if there is clear abuse taking place, I can't imagine why an annulment would not be granted, and why it wouldn't be granted quickly.   I think the issue/problem may be that every case is different, and very carefully considered, since marriage is a serious commitment before God.

Have you checked with Catholic Answers (www.catholic.com)?  I just went there and typed in "annulments" and many things come up.  I would also suggest Catholic Q&A radio shows, as on Ave Maria Radio or Relevant Radio (www.relevantradio.com).  Relevant has at least 3 Catholic Q&A shows; my favorite is Patrick Madrid's show.  Very thorough answers and frequently they have recommended books and other resources.  Also, the topic of annulments comes up quite frequently.

I hope this helps.  Will keep you in my prayers.  Best wishes and God bless.

Thank you for the prayers and well wishes. It still doesn't really answer my question though.


My question really gets at this:

Why is abuse not an automatic annulment?

Why is it that someone like my sister, who was abused, is now not supposed to be able to remarry?

The reality is, that a loving God would not expect someone in my sister's situation to remain married, in any sense, even 'on paper' within HIS church.

So why does she have to go through such a process that would put her at risk of more violence, physical / emotional / spiritual, etc.

Why is there no real answer here?

I cannot in good conscience encourage my sister to get an annulment through the church because I have no guarantee that she would not be put at further risk. I do not trust this investigation process not to allow for my sister to come to further harm.

I am currently filling out a questionnaire as a witness to an annulment for a different couple. They never physically abused one another, so the good part of the annulment process is being fulfilled. Both parties will hopefully see what their errors were in the first place.

I can see the good of the annulment process for most people. BUT NOT WITH PDs. My sister was married to a man with NPD / ASD most likely. My T said that this man was a sociopath.

My sister's ex does not need to self-reflect. It will not help him become a better person and just think over that he shouldn't have systematically abused my sister. He has no conscience.

He controlled how much she could even eat. He made fun of her. He gaslighted her. He cut her off from her family. He tried to destroy her career as well. He holds things over her to this day, even with NC.

How is that something to even go near enough to get an annulment from?

I just feel that the "church" is naive or striving so hard to make sure that no Catholic can get away from the church's teaching, to the point that someone like my sister is put into a position of "sin".

Is she just never supposed to find love again?

Whereas, there are other denominations that have a logical answer to this. Catholicism, how I was raised, apparently does not.

I will keep reading and look at the resources shared, but I don't think I'm going to find the answer. The answer I need is that, of course, my sister is important and they could look at evidence that she was abused and annul the marriage. DONE. I would need the situation to be that an "investigation" would show that he abused her and that's it. Otherwise, she's automatically in danger if he were to be contacted. He does not care about stepping over boundaries. He does not live in a world with true boundaries.

What would YOU do in such a situation? This is why many wind up leaving the Catholic church.

It's devastating. And yet, there are those who continue to argue and defend the Catholic church's stance here. I understand the rule for most people, I really do, and I respect it more and more over time. However, this is just not ok.

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DJCleo

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Re: Why don't all churches have a way "out" of toxic marriages?
« Reply #22 on: December 12, 2018, 04:48:43 PM »
Hello DJCleo, 

Im sorry you are experiencing difficulties in this way.  Im going to throw out a statement that is general, and dont want to rabbit trail this thread.  My personal opinion is that we humans have made ‘church’ into something it was not designed to be.  We have put humans into positions of power inside brick and mortar establishments when the term ‘church’ was only to describe a worldwide group of believers in, and acceptance of Christ’s kinsman-redeeming work on the cross. 

Therefore, because we have detoured Christ’s design for us as individuals to follow him, and created organizations with rules and power heirarchy, we have the problems you experience, as well as so many others.  Abuse in marriage, is imo, an annulment of vows made to the other partner and like a contract, becomes null and void, regardless of what the state and brick and mortar church/denominations say.   

If some folks choose for themselves to belong and participate in religious groups that meet under the rules of that group, then imo, that is their own choice and therefore must follow the rules, fight the rules, find a new group or simply be a part of the worldwide group called the ‘church’.  Actually, the toolbox’s 50% rule applies here, because we have choices and so therefore we are 50% of the reason we may be suffering.  The worldwide church is where i pitch my tent, and Christ’s teaching is my guide.  Christ tells us that he is the only ‘priest’ we, need and in my experience, it works well in following Christs design.  But, one thing about love is love’s freedom to choose.  To each his own.

SoT


I totally hear you, SoT. I would probably move to a different "church tent", but what's the point? If we are all Christians and all "belong to Christ" instead of the one who baptized us, then I can stay where I am and realize that people are not perfect.


I fully agree with you. That probably offends other Catholics and makes me a "bad Catholic", but I think Jesus would have been a bad Christian, by our human standards. So be it.

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coyote

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Re: Why don't all churches have a way "out" of toxic marriages?
« Reply #23 on: December 12, 2018, 05:03:39 PM »
"The reality is, that a loving God would not expect someone in my sister's situation to remain married, in any sense, even 'on paper' within HIS church.

So why does she have to go through such a process that would put her at risk of more violence, physical / emotional / spiritual, etc."

The answer DJCleo is that it is not "His" church. It is an artificial construct made up by "men" who want to maintain power and control over the populace.  I mean really. would you ever see Jesus dressed in the fancy, luxurious robes the Cardinals and Bishops of the Catholic Church dress in. Not to mention the money spent on the Vatican and all the other enterprises.
How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours.
 Wayne Dyer

The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Do you understand?
Capt. Jack Sparrow

Choose not to be harmed and you won’t feel harmed. Don’t feel harmed and you haven’t been. -Marcus Aurelius

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Hulagal79

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Re: Why don't all churches have a way "out" of toxic marriages?
« Reply #24 on: December 12, 2018, 05:26:38 PM »
DjCleo:  I still think your best bet is to speak to a canon lawyer, call in to a Catholic radio show and speak with someone very knowledgeable about Catholic "whys and wherefores," and/or perhaps read the book I earlier suggested.  Unfortunately, there are many people who may try to advise you about Catholicism who  in reality, greatly misunderstand Catholicism, though they may think they know it.  I'm  sure most mean well and are trying to help, but they often only see the externals and for some reason, are often unwilling to find out "why" the Church is as it is.  It's sad when some leave the Church for this reason.  If only they had stayed and done more 'homework' I think they would have been pleasantly surprised over time.

  Only a person very well versed in Church teachings, again, such as a canon lawyer or Catholic apologist, has enough insight and background to properly direct you and your sister. Unless someone here on this forum is one of those, I really don't think you'll get a satisfactory answer.

I am so sorry things are not going well for your sister, but I honestly believe the right path to take would be to consult someone who truly knows what the Church teaches and why.

For me as someone who deeply cherishes the Catholic Church, established by Jesus, Himself, I know I want to learn all I can and try to grow in my Faith.  The older I get, the more I am so thankful for that gift. I couldn't imagine going elsewhere; it's too precious to me.

I hope things turn out well for your sister and will continue to pray it does.  Best wishes!

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SonofThunder

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Re: Why don't all churches have a way "out" of toxic marriages?
« Reply #25 on: December 12, 2018, 11:19:34 PM »
"The reality is, that a loving God would not expect someone in my sister's situation to remain married, in any sense, even 'on paper' within HIS church.

So why does she have to go through such a process that would put her at risk of more violence, physical / emotional / spiritual, etc."

The answer DJCleo is that it is not "His" church. It is an artificial construct made up by "men" who want to maintain power and control over the populace.  I mean really. would you ever see Jesus dressed in the fancy, luxurious robes the Cardinals and Bishops of the Catholic Church dress in. Not to mention the money spent on the Vatican and all the other enterprises.
:yeahthat: 
Proverbs 17:1
A meal of bread and water in contented peace is better than a banquet spiced with quarrels.

2 Timothy 1:7
For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.

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SonofThunder

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Re: Why don't all churches have a way "out" of toxic marriages?
« Reply #26 on: December 12, 2018, 11:37:46 PM »
SoT,
Haven't seen you on the boards for a while. While not derailing the thread I'd like to ask anyone if they have read "Sermon on the Mount" by Fox. It basically says what SoT is saying and what I said earlier.


Hey Coyote,

Ive not posted as much as of late, but ive been checking in periodically.  Thanks for asking.  I have not read the book, but may enjoy it.  Thanks for the recommendation.  Im a fan of Wayne Jacobsens writings on the subject and I have found them spot-on with my experiences in the religious ‘construct’ (as you called it) and also truthful in my experiences now that im out of the ‘construct’.   

Its sad imo what man has always done to build power hierarchy's, and Christs timing was perfect, walking right into the pharisee hornets nest of the day, telling the truth, teaching who actually does hold all the power (while demonstrating perfect love), and then inviting his creation to rest in him vs man made ideas. 

And yes, what Cleo is describing sure sounds like a web of legalistic rules that guilt and weigh people down in rules.  Marital abuse imo makes the vows promised by the abuser, null and void and i have zero guilt regarding the subject of walking out, in reference to emotional, physical, verbal, financial or any other abuse dished out by a spouse.

Cleo, i hope you and your sister can find the answers you are searching for.

SoT
Proverbs 17:1
A meal of bread and water in contented peace is better than a banquet spiced with quarrels.

2 Timothy 1:7
For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.

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DJCleo

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Re: Why don't all churches have a way "out" of toxic marriages?
« Reply #27 on: December 13, 2018, 10:57:14 AM »
SoT,
Haven't seen you on the boards for a while. While not derailing the thread I'd like to ask anyone if they have read "Sermon on the Mount" by Fox. It basically says what SoT is saying and what I said earlier.


Hey Coyote,

Ive not posted as much as of late, but ive been checking in periodically.  Thanks for asking.  I have not read the book, but may enjoy it.  Thanks for the recommendation.  Im a fan of Wayne Jacobsens writings on the subject and I have found them spot-on with my experiences in the religious ‘construct’ (as you called it) and also truthful in my experiences now that im out of the ‘construct’.   

Its sad imo what man has always done to build power hierarchy's, and Christs timing was perfect, walking right into the pharisee hornets nest of the day, telling the truth, teaching who actually does hold all the power (while demonstrating perfect love), and then inviting his creation to rest in him vs man made ideas. 

And yes, what Cleo is describing sure sounds like a web of legalistic rules that guilt and weigh people down in rules.  Marital abuse imo makes the vows promised by the abuser, null and void and i have zero guilt regarding the subject of walking out, in reference to emotional, physical, verbal, financial or any other abuse dished out by a spouse.

Cleo, i hope you and your sister can find the answers you are searching for.

SoT


I'd also like to find the answers. I think my sister made the right decision in not seeking a formal annulment. It's unfortunate, because I'd like to see that she would be able to remarry in the catholic church if she would like to. Her husband (her real husband, the man who does honor her) is not religious, so it's probably for the best that they don't marry in the Catholic church. But, I just can't find fault with her not getting an annulment. I do wind up having this cognitive dissonance though about this situation. I understand that it would be a good thing to have it annulled, but that seems to me to be in a "perfect world" scenario, where there was some type of real answer.

I also have a problem with this because the 'church' is supposed to be the champion of the underdog. We are supposed to lift up the lowly. But we don't have a real answer to share in how to get an annulment without contacting the abusive party? Without stirring up an abusive personality to have a new weapon to use against someone they abused? That is just inexcusable. I think, maybe, there might be an answer somewhere in all of canon law, etc., but where is it and why is it so hard to find and understand?

What is seems like, is that either I can just reject any type of guilt or anything regarding this situation, although it's not my life, it's my sister's. OR, I can go exactly by Catholic church rules and think that my sister is "living in sin" by loving someone who is good to her. What? This is the cognitive dissonance. Jesus said to "do unto others" as you would have them do unto you. If I were in the situation, I'd like to have an annulment without being made to relive my abuse all over again after I had done therapy and had to fight for my life to get away from my abuser.

Again, ideal situation would mean that no annulment were necessary in the first place. It just galls me to think that such a wonderful woman is still being held captive in her church life by this abusive PD that was in her life. Whereas, he, the abuser, still gets what he wants - some type of hold over her. She's not always been the most devout Catholic, but she does believe and she does try to be a good person. She is kind, funny, giving, empathetic, etc.

I don't think Jesus would be telling my sister to put herself in further harm's way. I just don't see why a Catholic Church, which is supposed to represent God on earth, would do that.

But, I do think at least big parts of the Catholic Church are corrupted. I can say that as a Catholic as well. I can acknowledge it. Just like acknowledging that humans are flawed and some of those humans are in an organization and cause harm to others at times. There are certainly humans in every church 'faction' that cause harm, unfortunately.

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Hulagal79

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Re: Why don't all churches have a way "out" of toxic marriages?
« Reply #28 on: December 13, 2018, 11:53:47 AM »
A little food for thought:  I'm reminded that Jesus said to "Enter through the narrow gate."  He also told us we would be rejected if we followed Him, just as He was rejected.  He is "a sign that will be  opposed." We're not promised a bed of roses; quite the contrary--if we follow Him, we are guaranteed we will have "crosses" to carry, and we will be criticized by others.  The saints can surely attest to that fact.  This world is full of those who compromise on truth; it's everywhere we look. But in the end-- they compromise for what?? Something passing; not eternal.

In other words, we're told life won't be easy if we truly follow Jesus.  There is much work for us all to do.  I think that's yet another reason why I believe the Catholic Church to have full truth.  No, it's not perfect--human beings are not perfect; we are on a journey.  There will be infiltration and yes, even people with evil intentions. We're even told to beware of wolves in sheep' clothing.  As you likely know, there is no shortage of that these days. But Jesus, Himself instituted the Church.  He doesn't make mistakes.

I'm disappointed by some of the comments on this thread by various posters--and I have seen similar in other threads.  I hope  you won't be swayed by them. They remind me of what Archbishop Sheen once said:  "There are not 100 people who truly hate the Catholic Church.  There are, however, millions of people who hate what they falsely perceive the Church to be."  Truer words were never spoken!

This will be my last post on this thread.  Again, I wish you and your sister well,  and I hope you won't be swayed by the misguided worldly opinions so prevalent these days.   God bless you.

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coyote

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Re: Why don't all churches have a way "out" of toxic marriages?
« Reply #29 on: December 13, 2018, 12:12:02 PM »
I must respectfully disagree with Hulaga. Jesus tells us "ask and we shall receive". We were not put on the earth to be in turmoil and pain. We were put here to enjoy the life God has given us. If we are right in our thoughts and prayers we will be given all we need to have a happy and prosperous life.
How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours.
 Wayne Dyer

The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Do you understand?
Capt. Jack Sparrow

Choose not to be harmed and you won’t feel harmed. Don’t feel harmed and you haven’t been. -Marcus Aurelius

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DJCleo

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Re: Why don't all churches have a way "out" of toxic marriages?
« Reply #30 on: December 13, 2018, 02:48:22 PM »
A little food for thought:  I'm reminded that Jesus said to "Enter through the narrow gate."  He also told us we would be rejected if we followed Him, just as He was rejected.  He is "a sign that will be  opposed." We're not promised a bed of roses; quite the contrary--if we follow Him, we are guaranteed we will have "crosses" to carry, and we will be criticized by others.  The saints can surely attest to that fact.  This world is full of those who compromise on truth; it's everywhere we look. But in the end-- they compromise for what?? Something passing; not eternal.

In other words, we're told life won't be easy if we truly follow Jesus.  There is much work for us all to do.  I think that's yet another reason why I believe the Catholic Church to have full truth.  No, it's not perfect--human beings are not perfect; we are on a journey.  There will be infiltration and yes, even people with evil intentions. We're even told to beware of wolves in sheep' clothing.  As you likely know, there is no shortage of that these days. But Jesus, Himself instituted the Church.  He doesn't make mistakes.

I'm disappointed by some of the comments on this thread by various posters--and I have seen similar in other threads.  I hope  you won't be swayed by them. They remind me of what Archbishop Sheen once said:  "There are not 100 people who truly hate the Catholic Church.  There are, however, millions of people who hate what they falsely perceive the Church to be."  Truer words were never spoken!

This will be my last post on this thread.  Again, I wish you and your sister well,  and I hope you won't be swayed by the misguided worldly opinions so prevalent these days.   God bless you.


I think you're right, that the right thing is not always easy, for example. Suffering can be meaningful and redemptive. I get that. I understand that we often have crosses to bear, like Jesus did. I agree that's something to be considered. I know that it's important to do the right thing even when it's uncomfortable. Just like this whole community has to deal with PDs in a manner that is right and just although does bring suffering at times because having strong boundaries will bring suffering. However, that suffering does bear good fruit. It does lead to something better. We have to go through a lot, but it does make our lives more manageable, for example.

I also see that, in various denominations, the answer for suffering and its "purpose" is very different. I know that I've posted on a website that is not Catholic-only. I will get varied answers because I wanted to hear from anyone who might actually entertain my question from a perspective of perhaps seeing through what I see as a practice (annulment) that can be holy, helpful, although painful, in the right circumstances if two people got 'married', but just weren't right for each other. This annulment process can be healing as well. However, in my sister's case, a very specific case, it would not be healing or helpful to her.

(I didn't always think this about annulments. I have started to see, though, that the questions posed to 'witnesses' of a marriage are targeted to see about whether a marriage was a real relationship or not. I can see that, if someone were to go through this process with an open heart, they would gain a lot. The church is forcing someone who wants an annulment to be introspective, self-reflective, and think over what they did wrong so that they don't repeat history. That is wonderful, but not in my sister's situation. She's already done this work through therapy and picked up all of the pieces of her psyche, heart, soul, etc. To do an annulment would only be to satisfy the church requirements.)

I do partly wish that my sister could go through and get an annulment.

However, I don't see why the Catholic church can't come up with a contingency plan to grant annulments speedily in cases of abuse, without having to contact the abusive parties.

That's the crux of this question. I know there are varying viewpoints on this thread, and I welcome and appreciate them greatly. I know that being Catholic isn't for everyone. I have accepted that a long time ago. I think, like looking a beloved family member (Catholic Church, or any church, etc.) , we can still see their warts and still love them, just as we can still love to be part of church. Some of us have had to find peace outside of the "construct", because people have mucked so much up. I applaud them for finding what works for them because we each have to make decisions best for us.

So, again, I just don't "get" why the Catholic church allows this type of suffering. I have been hoping I'd find a different answer than "they just don't care enough" or "the powers that be have allowed this to continue" or something along the lines of what I suspected, that the hierarchy does want to stay in control. Again, I think an annulment process can be a wonderful process, although painful, if the right circumstances are in place. But, it can also be dangerous. In this case with my sister, there should be a good solution, that would not bring her further harm. I don't see why that is so hard to admit. It seems very difficult to admit that, even if the church is beloved to us, that it is not perfect in how it responds to everything.

However, this does not mean to me necessarily that the core teachings are worth casting aside. There is a lot of good that can happen from the Catholic Church. However, I demand more from such an organization that professes to be the ministry of Christ on earth.

If you were truly in such a capacity / ministry, then you would have a way out for someone to keep their church standing intact, without having to suffer so much. That just doesn't make any sense to me. You should suffer in order to come back into good standing with the church for having suffered abuse? Blame the victim? Make the victim have to work to get free? The church should be standing behind and with someone in my sister's situation instead. She's already suffered. Suffering can be a good thing, but there are times when suffering is needless, fruitless, and just plain harmful. This would be one of those cases. Right?

That said, I do understand suffering to be the result of people's actions. This is not God doing this. I don't blame God at all.

All in all, I do thank each of you for your input. I value the diversity of this post and all of the varied viewpoints as well as how respectful you all have been. It's not common to be able to have such a discussion that comes out so respectfully to all the parties involved when the topic is tied to religion.

Thank you.

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coyote

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Re: Why don't all churches have a way "out" of toxic marriages?
« Reply #31 on: December 13, 2018, 03:27:22 PM »
"All in all, I do thank each of you for your input. I value the diversity of this post and all of the varied viewpoints as well as how respectful you all have been. It's not common to be able to have such a discussion that comes out so respectfully to all the parties involved when the topic is tied to religion."

I am so thankful for this forum where diverse opinions are respected. It seems our current climate has us pitted against each other so often it is nice to have a safe place to dialouge. 
How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours.
 Wayne Dyer

The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Do you understand?
Capt. Jack Sparrow

Choose not to be harmed and you won’t feel harmed. Don’t feel harmed and you haven’t been. -Marcus Aurelius

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DJCleo

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Re: Why don't all churches have a way "out" of toxic marriages?
« Reply #32 on: December 14, 2018, 10:47:30 AM »

I am so thankful for this forum where diverse opinions are respected. It seems our current climate has us pitted against each other so often it is nice to have a safe place to dialouge.

 :yeahthat:   If there were on any other site, then this topic would have exploded and never had any real dialogue.

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Call Me Cordelia

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Re: Why don't all churches have a way "out" of toxic marriages?
« Reply #33 on: December 14, 2018, 12:07:50 PM »
DJCleo, I hear your pain and I think your question is a good one. There have been annulments carried out without the cooperation of one of the former spouses. At least among people I know. So maybe your sister can find peace and healing. I pray she find a good pastor to help.

I don't think the process has been reformed nearly enough. At least not universally. And it's not a high enough priority among the bishops in general. They are supposed to be our pastors, and caring for the people. It's a scandal when the lack of caring from exactly the people who should be caring the most drives people away from the Church.  :hug:

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DJCleo

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Re: Why don't all churches have a way "out" of toxic marriages?
« Reply #34 on: December 17, 2018, 02:46:57 PM »
DJCleo, I hear your pain and I think your question is a good one. There have been annulments carried out without the cooperation of one of the former spouses. At least among people I know. So maybe your sister can find peace and healing. I pray she find a good pastor to help.

I don't think the process has been reformed nearly enough. At least not universally. And it's not a high enough priority among the bishops in general. They are supposed to be our pastors, and caring for the people. It's a scandal when the lack of caring from exactly the people who should be caring the most drives people away from the Church.  :hug:

You're right. It is a scandal with the lack of caring. I've asked several priests who haven't had much of an answer, if at all, and then weakly change the subject because they just don't seem to know what to say. I understand how that feels, being asked something that you're not sure of the answer to, but it's still discouraging that they're not all more knowledgeable about this and that they even expect people to go get an annulment, but they don't know anything about the process. How can you expect someone to go through all that without knowing the process?

That said, I understand that priests are people too, but they should be willing to learn more about it if they're going to say that people should go through such a process.

I did ask a canon lawyer. His answer what that my sister should contact her parish priest, then the priest should help her by talking to the tribunal. Then she should present any evidence she has of abuse (restraining order, hospital records, records from the divorce, etc.). Then tell the annulment judge about the abuse and say that she doesn't want the other party (her ex) contacted. Then the judge has the choice to not contact her ex. But then my sister would have to find out and withdraw her request if the judge still wanted to contact the other party (her ex).

My sister went through a series of dehumanizing traumas. The annulment process also needs to have an official civil divorce decree beforehand as well, which she has, but how many others probably aren't able to get through the divorce in one piece?
:stars:

I can sort of understand that perhaps the judge maybe wouldn't contact her ex and she could withdraw the case before moving forward.... but would anyone in their right mind actually put in a bid for an annulment under these circumstances?

At this point, it still seems like a terrible idea. And would God require someone to put their life into the hands of such a tribunal, not knowing them? I cannot imagine a good God doing that.  :sadno:

Plus, how would you even come to trust such a pastor in the first place without taking other risks based on the traumas? Based on the behaviors my sister used to try to get away from such an abuser? Behaviors that her ex still tries to use against her? She tried certain things in order to try to get AWAY and in the hopes of making her unwanted, but the ex was so controlling that he tried to use the behaviors against her to keep her under his thumb instead of being hurt or upset or walking away, etc.

Really. I cannot fathom having to go through that.

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openskyblue

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Re: Why don't all churches have a way "out" of toxic marriages?
« Reply #35 on: December 17, 2018, 02:50:20 PM »
I'm not Catholic, so please forgive this question if it's a dopey one, but...

Unless your sister wants to marry again in the Catholic church, why should she put herself through an annulment process? As a divorced person, she can attend Mass and take holy communion.

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RavenLady

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Re: Why don't all churches have a way "out" of toxic marriages?
« Reply #36 on: December 17, 2018, 05:28:27 PM »
DJCleo, I really respect your persistence in wrestling with this question. I feel like what you are saying is that your church's policies feel unjust and harmful, and you are wondering why anyone should have to follow them. I'm not a Catholic, so my gut reaction won't surprise and might not hold much weight, but here it is: YOU SHOULDN'T. IMHO, nobody should ever have to consent to rules that cause people needless harm. Rules that cause harm are the wrong rules. Period. It doesn't matter who makes and enforces them. Nobody has the right to hurt each other. Isn't that why we're all here?

Reaching conclusions like these had dramatic consequences for my own faith, but I am SO GLAD I had the courage to face them and act with integrity once I did. Getting away from damaging social structures is an important part of self-care.

Best of luck to you and your sister. She sounds lucky to have you!
sometimes in the open you look up
to see a whorl of clouds, dragging and furling
your whole invented history. You look up
from where you're standing, say
among the stolid mountains,
and in that moment your life
becomes the margin
of what matters
-- Terry Ehret

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coyote

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Re: Why don't all churches have a way "out" of toxic marriages?
« Reply #37 on: December 17, 2018, 05:47:51 PM »
A quick google search came up with this site,

https://svdparish.org/separated-or-divorced-catholics/

It does say if you are divorced without an annulment and remarried you should refrain from taking communion.
How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours.
 Wayne Dyer

The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Do you understand?
Capt. Jack Sparrow

Choose not to be harmed and you won’t feel harmed. Don’t feel harmed and you haven’t been. -Marcus Aurelius

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SonofThunder

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Re: Why don't all churches have a way "out" of toxic marriages?
« Reply #38 on: December 17, 2018, 05:59:38 PM »
A quick google search came up with this site,

https://svdparish.org/separated-or-divorced-catholics/

It does say if you are divorced without an annulment and remarried you should refrain from taking communion.

I dont remember there being a rule book in the upper room, just a ragged bunch of humanity having their stanky feet washed and then being lovingly taught by a living (and dying) example from their Kinsman Redeemer, both there at dinner, and then over the next tumultuous 24 hours, while having been given a great and easy way to remember how much they are loved; over the symbolism found on the common supper table. 

Simple yet powerful and the invitation to believe and participate, opened to all humanity.  Yes... ALL, including pharisees, murderers, terrorists, PD’s and every other thing you can think of.  I dont think Jesus, the inventor of communion, excluded the un-annuled. 

SoT  :cool2:
« Last Edit: December 17, 2018, 06:11:10 PM by SonofThunder »
Proverbs 17:1
A meal of bread and water in contented peace is better than a banquet spiced with quarrels.

2 Timothy 1:7
For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.

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coyote

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Re: Why don't all churches have a way "out" of toxic marriages?
« Reply #39 on: December 17, 2018, 06:08:16 PM »
 :yeahthat:
How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours.
 Wayne Dyer

The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Do you understand?
Capt. Jack Sparrow

Choose not to be harmed and you won’t feel harmed. Don’t feel harmed and you haven’t been. -Marcus Aurelius