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Pope Francis \ Activities

Pope to Roman Rota: Legal and sacramental preparation needed for married couples

A married couple stand during their wedding ceremony celebrated as part of a mass by Pope Francis at Saint Peter's Basilica,, 14 September 2014. - ANSA

A married couple stand during their wedding ceremony celebrated as part of a mass by Pope Francis at Saint Peter's Basilica,, 14 September 2014. - ANSA

21/01/2017 11:43

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis on Saturday received members of the Apostolic Tribunal of the Roman Rota on the occasion of the inauguration of the judicial year.

Listen to Lydia O’Kane's report:

Addressing those gathered for the opening of the judiciary year of the Sacred Roman Rota, Pope Francis focused his attention on the relationship between faith and marriage.

Love and Truth

Quoting from his predecessors including Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI, he noted the importance of Love and Truth.

"Love needs truth”, Pope Francis said.  “Just as it is based on truth, love can last over time, overcome the ephemeral moment and stand firm to support a common path. If love has no relationship to the truth, the Holy Father explained, “it is subject to changing feelings and does not stand the test of time. True love, he added, “unifies all the elements of the person and becomes a new light towards a great and full life.

In his observations, the Pope underlined that, “the experiences of faith of those seeking Christian marriage are very different.” Faced with this situation, he said, “we need to find valid remedies.”

Prescribing the first of two remedies, the Holy Father pointed out that young people needed to be trained through an adequate process of preparation aimed at rediscovering marriage and the family according to God's plan.

He said, it was therefore necessary that operators and organizations in charge of the pastoral care of the family had the specific skills in order to make preparation more effective for the sacrament of marriage.

In this spirit, the Pope reiterated the need for a "new catechumenate" in preparation for marriage.

The Holy Father’s second remedy involved  helping newlyweds to continue the journey in faith and in the Church even after the wedding celebration.

You need, Pope Francis stressed, to identify with courage and creativity, a training project for young married couples, with initiatives aimed at increasing awareness of the sacrament received.

Legal and sacramental view of marriage preparation

The Holy Father said, that these two remedies were aimed at encouraging an appropriate context of faith in which to celebrate and live marriage.

What was needed, explained the Pope, was to move from a purely legal and formal vision of the preparation of future spouses, to a sacramental foundation.

Pope Francis said that this would require, “the generous contribution of Christian men and women, who work with priests in the pastoral care of families, in order to build a loving family according to God’s plan.

21/01/2017 11:43