UCTAA churchlight

Site Search via Google

Meditation 370
Anarchic Relationships?

A discussion on this article has been opened in Debate and Discourse. Please feel free to add your thoughts to the discussion via the contact page.

anarchic: 1. Lawless - showing no respect for established laws, rules, institutions, or authority; 2. Chaotic - characterized by a lack of organization or control.

On Monday, Pope Benedict XVI expressed some of his views on marriage. He is quoted as saying:

"Today's various forms of dissolution of marriage, free unions, trial marriages as well as the pseudo-marriages between people of the same sex are instead expressions of anarchic freedom which falsely tries to pass itself off as the true liberation of man."

Anarchic? Does the pope know what he is talking about? Or is he limiting his personal definition of anarchic solely to a lack of respect for the pope's authority?

Are the "various forms of dissolution of marriage" anarchic? Surely not. There are laws and procedures governing divorce in most countries. And the Catholic Church itself has regulations and procedures governing annulments. To seek to dissolve a marriage is to submit to the law, unlike those who simply abandon their spouses.

I won't discuss free unions - I am unclear on what the pope means by the term.

What about trial marriages? Are they anarchic? Perhaps in those countries which still prohibit cohabitation. But, in many countries, living together for a sufficient period binds you under the laws governing common-law marriages. To avoid this, you need a negotiated legal agreement. Either way you come under existing laws.

Finally, what about what the pope termed "pseudo-marriages between people of the same sex"? Yet what those who advocate same-sex unions want is to have their relationships legally recognized. This is the very opposite of anarchy. They want the formal blessing of authority.

Pope Benedict XVI certainly has the right to express his opinion on the morality of various forms of relationships, and even the right to impose those views upon those who adhere to Roman Catholicism. But, he is wrong to call such relationships anarchic when they are in full compliance with secular law.