148 – “The Church does not disregard the constructive elements in those situations which do not yet or no longer correspond to her teaching on marriage”

In reading Saint Augustine’s The City of God, we get the sensation that he was writing for our days; not what he wrote on the city of God itself, but rather, the city of the evil one as he describes it.

Today, the laws and behaviour referring to matrimony and the family constitute a deformation – a veritable departure from, and offense to what was by established God. The institution of the family is sadly destroyed and degraded by the enemies of the Holy Church. Woe to those who valiantly and heroically defend and give testimony of family values according to Jesus Christ! They can hope for nothing but complete indifference from many, and even attempts to impede their continuous testimony of matrimonial indissolubility. All are quite aware that these affirmations are no exaggeration. The pressure to ‘adapt’ to the times is the cruelest of battles that a Christian has to face today.

Formerly, the few who resisted in this fight found strength and support in Catholic Doctrine. When they felt they were about to give in, they could consult a priest who would remind them of their obligations, and God’s love for them; this kept them faithful amid the storm.

And today? What kind of support is available for the young girl who practices purity, or the upright youth, or parents under attack? Not even in the innovative magisterium of he who sits on St. Peter’s throne will they find clear doctrine that teaches them to follow the sacred laws of God. In place of the support they seek, they will come to face with justifications regarding the formation of ‘analogous families’ which, though opposed to the teachings of God and his the Church, are more favorably looked upon and understood than the Christian family itself.

Yes, this is the sad situation in which Francis – who so professes his love for the marginalized – has left properly constituted families. They are the only marginalized group Francis absolutely fails to support.

But the truth is one and unchanging, and all unions outside of marriage continue being an offense toward the Creator and unacceptable in the eyes of the Church. The infallible Magisterium defines them with this unchanging precision. Let us love clarity and truth, and leave confusion and lies to the children of darkness.



Quote A

Teachings of the Magisterium

Enter the various parts of our study

IWhat ‘union’ fulfills in a partial and analogous manner the ideal of Catholic marriage? May irregular unions be considered in some way legitimate?
II – The situations of familial union that do not correspond to Church teaching on matrimony may only be valued if they are apt for entire regularity. In themselves, they continue being irregular and adulterous
III – In a world that does not recognize the laws of God and of the Church, valuing irregular situations is the same as promoting them

I – What kinds of union fulfill in a partial and analogous manner the ideal of the Catholic family? May irregular unions be considered in some way legitimate?


The transmission of human life is subject to the all-holy, immutable laws of God

John Paul II

Entire love cannot exist in unions, like concubinage, which are contrary to the law of God - Only indissoluble matrimony, assumed in fidelity and open to life, is a family community
The family must not be inadequately portrayed
The negative precepts of the Gospel express the urgent need to protect human life and the communion of persons in marriage
There are no different degrees or forms of precept in God’s law for different individuals and situations


Reprobated licentious and free love were condemned by the Church ever since the beginning
Any union among the faithful which is not a sacrament has not the force and nature of a proper marriage
Those with corrupt morals endeavor to deprive marriage of all holiness

Pius IX

Any other union except the sacramental union is nothing but disgraceful and death-bringing concubinage

Pius XII

It is never permitted to yield to the carnal appetite outside of matrimony

Council of Trent (Ecumenical XIX)

Anathema: whoever denies that any new convivence after separation from the legitimate spouse is adultery

Catechism of Trent (Ecumenical XIX)

To be a family, children must be born of a true and lawful wife

Catechism of the Catholic Church

It is an error to judge the morality of human acts by considering only the intention that inspires them or their circumstances
Fornication is gravely contrary to the dignity of persons and a scandal

John Paul II

Carnal union outside of marriage is morally wrong

II – The situations of familial union that do not correspond to Church teaching on matrimony may only be valued if they are apt for entire regularity. In themselves, they continue being irregular and adulterous

Pontifical Council for the Family

In cases of irregular second union, ascertain whether previous religious marriage was null

John Paul II

Catholics who contract a merely civil marriage should be induced to regularize their situation in light of Christian principles

Pontifical Council for Interpretation of Legislative Texts

Pastoral action must aim to help Catholics in civil marriage to regularize their situation with religious marriage

Congregation for Bishops

Many Catholics united only in a civil ceremony or the divorced can regularize their situation, but until that is done they still are in irregular marital situations

Benedict XVI

Not all petitions to declare the nullity of a marriage are valid

Saint Augustine of Hippo

The good of children, in itself, is not sufficient reason for an irregular marital situation

III – In a world that does not recognize the laws of God and of the Church, valuing irregular situations is the same as promoting them

Sacred Scripture

The danger of not calling evil by its name
The time will come when people will not tolerate sound doctrine and will stop listening to the truth and will be diverted to myths

Pontifical Council for the Family

It is devoid of reality and good sense to think that the liberation of women implies liberation from matrimony

Benedict XVI

The increase of divorce and de facto unions urge the proclamation of the Gospel of Life and Family in its integrity
Bishops are bound to reaffirm non-negotiable values constantly

John Paul II

A pastoral proposal for the family in crisis presupposes doctrinal clarity
In the name of understanding and compassion, one must not hold out false hope but rather the clarity of truth
It is a serious pastoral omission not to proclaim the truth about marriage and the family
At a time of deep uncertainty about truth, doctrine must be taught with clarity


Speak with simplicity; speak with clarity! Darkness envelopes human souls and institutions - The words that make up our sermons are not our own, but those of the celestial doctrine

Pius XII

The imprudence of devaluating what has been traditionally conceived, expressed and perfected by men endowed with no common talent and holiness for unstable tenets of a new philosophy


To keep silence when from all sides clamors are raised against truth, is the part of a man who entertains doubt as to the truth of what he professes to believe


The graver the evils threatening the flock, the greater the solicitude the Roman Pontiffs ought to employ in preventing them

Pius IX

Many evils arise from ignorance of divine matters essential for salvation: the necessity of preaching our august religion, its doctrine, precepts, and discipline

Related studies

  • 151 – “The internet offers immense possibilities for encounter and solidarity. This is something truly good, a gift from God”

  • 149 – “No family drops down from heaven perfectly formed. Our contemplation of the fulfillment which we have yet to attain also allows us to see in proper perspective the historical journey which we make as families, and in this way to stop demanding of our interpersonal relationships a perfection, a purity of intentions and a consistency which we will only encounter in the Kingdom to come”

  • 145 – “The divorced who have entered a new union can find themselves in a variety of situations, which should not be pigeonholed or fit into overly rigid classifications leaving no room for a suitable discernment”


  • 105 – Not all discern, in their solitude, the Lord calling them. Around us we find various families in so-called irregular situations – I don’t really like this word

  • 102 – The family is an anthropological fact, and consequently a social, cultural fact, etc. We cannot qualify it with ideological concepts. Today there can be no talk of the conservative family or the progressive family: family is family!

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