Title: Parental Blessing at a "Marriage-in-Becoming": A Pastoral Proposal
Authors: Sanders, Henk # ×
Issue Date: 2010
Publisher: Peeters Publishers
Series Title: INTAMS Review vol:16 issue:2 pages:13-26
Abstract: Already in 1981 the magisterium formulated its view on unmarried cohabitation and its advice regarding pastoral approach thereto. Since then this life form has had an explosive growth but it also has evolved in terms of content and significance for younger generations in the West. Central to this essay stands the pastoral concern for believing young adults, who in huge numbers enter into unmarried cohabitation – for the most part prenuptial or with or without the explicit intention to marry – despite the clear disapproval of the Church. A study of the relevant church documents point out that the Church puts marriage first and foremost as the ideal: an exclusive, lasting, fruitful and socially recognised project that is seen as the desirable incarnation of the love between a man and a woman. Such idealising obviously brings along its own characteristic problems, in particular when the agape-dimension of marital love is over-accentuated in the theological view, so much so that the church view on marriage, relationships and sexuality comes across as rather naively unrealistic to the believers. Thatcher and Lawler point to a possible impasse between the younger generations of believers and the Church due to a mutual lack of understanding as regards the view on love and sexuality. They argue for a differentiated view on unmarried cohabitation and formulate a pastoral proposal founded on socio-historical agreements. This essay’s author further develops critically their insights and proposal, but formulates his own proposal of a parental blessing for unmarried cohabitants, based on important sociological insights, which form the first part of his doctoral dissertation. The essay concludes with a detailed parental blessing as a proposal.
ISSN: 1370-6020
VABB publication type: VABB-1
Publication status: published
KU Leuven publication type: IT
Appears in Collections:Research Unit of Theological and Comparative Ethics
× corresponding author
# (joint) last author

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