Christian Views on MarriageMarriage is given, that husband and wife may comfort and help each other, living faithfully together in need and in plenty, in sorrow and in joy. It is given, that with delight and tenderness they may know each other in love and, through the joy of their bodily union, may strengthen the union of their hearts and lives. It is given that they may have children and be blessed in caring for them and bringing them up in accordance with God’s will.
I call upon these persons here present to witness that I, A.B., do take thee, C.D., to be my lawful wedded wife, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better for worse, for ricer or poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death do us part, according to God’s holy law, and to this I pledge myself. [Taken from the Church of England Alternative Service Book]
N and N (Christian names only) you have come together in this church so that the Lord may seal and strengthen your love in the presence of the Church’s minister and this community. Christ abundantly blesses this love. He has already consecrated you in baptism and now he enriches and strengthens you by a special sacrament so that you may assume the duties of marriage and mutual and lasting fidelity. And so, in the presence of the Church, I ask you to state your intentions… Are you ready freely and without reservation to give yourselves to each other in marriage? Are you ready to love and honour each other as man and wife for the rest of your lives? Are you ready to accept children lovingly from God and bring them up according to the law of Christ and his Church? [Roman Catholic Rite of Marriage During Mass]
90% of men and women will have been married by the age of 40 and, despite all the publicity and pressures to the contrary, there is a strong feeling that marriage should be forever. Although for this to be the case involves a great act of faith and represents one of the biggest compliments one human being can pay to another. The challenge of this great act of faith is by no means impossible as there are many Christian marriages which have lived and many which still live. They are quiet lives of great dedication, gradually deepening their commitment and love and because of their faith in Jesus they truly believe in the capacity of the human heart to love to the end.
In recent years, there has been such a dramatic increase in the number of divorces that now 1 in 3 or 4 marriages are likely to break down. Underlying these figures lies and illustration of considerable person suffering, loneliness and daily tension, especially when we remember the number of children involved, as there is normally an average of 3 children per family. It is estimated that something like…