The Koblin Family Law Center

Religious law doesn't always coincide with California law

The statistic that 50 percent of all marriages end in divorce has become essentially common knowledge. While we can’t confirm nor deny the truth of that statistic or discuss how the facts are analyzed to come to that conclusion, we can say that divorce is a very real part of our society.

When a marriage simply isn’t working for one reason or another, a couple can end the marriage under the eyes of the law and with the assistance of a Pleasanton divorce attorney. However, California law isn’t the only set of codes that are often in play. For some couples, religious laws provide different rules. Will Pope Francis be changing some of those rules for Catholics?

Under Roman Catholic law, a marriage is considered indissoluble, and it is a strict standard followed by the church. Following the religious law, those that divorce and remarry have traditionally been denied communion at Mass.

As it stands, the alternative for those that strictly follow the religious rules is annulment. In the United States, the rules for obtaining an annulment have arguably been relaxed slightly.

The German diocese of Freiburg created new guidelines that would help bridge the gap between society and tradition, with the intent of honoring the sanctity of marriage. The proposed guidelines allowed couples that entered into a second marriage with serious and full commitment to receive communion.

The Vatican ordered the practice to cease, but the issue has not been settled. It will be heard at next year’s synod or meeting of the bishops.

There is only speculation as to what will occur, but those that want advice under California law should seek the assistance of a divorce attorney.

Source: The Boston Globe, “Divorce for Catholics?” James Carroll, Dec. 23, 2013

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The Koblin Family Law Center
5700 Stoneridge Mall Road, Suite 230
Pleasanton, CA 94588

Phone: 925-298-2961
Fax: 925-203-9797
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