Mirror of Justice

A blog dedicated to the development of Catholic legal theory.
Affiliated with the Program on Church, State & Society at Notre Dame Law School.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Vatican Colloquium on the Complementarity of Man and Woman in Marriage

It was an extraordinary day at the Vatican Colloquium on the Complementarity of Man and Woman in Marriage.  Pope Francis adddressed what he called the "crisis" in marriage and declared that children have a right to a family with a mother and a father.  The point was then stressed by Cardinal Gerhard Muller, Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith in his address.  Pastor Christoph Arnold of the Bruderhof communities followed with a passionate defense of marriage against contemporary currents of thought that trivialize it or reduce it to something concerned mainly with the satisfactions of adults, and not with the need for children to have the care and influences of mothers and fathers in the marital bond. Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks then offered a brilliant account of the development of the idea of marriage as a conjugal union of sexually complementary spouses and a critique of ideologies that weaken the marriage culture, with devastating effects on the weakest and most vulnerable members of society, especially children and the poor.  His remarks were given a lengthy standing ovation. Sister Prudence Allen followed with a tightly argued philosophical defense of complementarity.  And that was just the program for the morning! We also heard moving and insightful presentations from Nigerian Anglican Archbishop Nicholas Okoh (on why African Christians will not yield to liberal individualist and relativistic ideas about marriage and sexual morality), Dr. Rasoul Rasoulipour (offering an Islamic defense of marriage as a male-female union), and the Venerable Niso Takeuchi (giving us a Japanese Buddhist perspective). Dr. Harshad Sanghrajka represented the Jain tradition and Dr. Janna Matlary, the former Secretary of State of Norway, provided an assessment of the cultural and political challenges facing those of us in the West who are determined to defend marriage as a conjugal union and rebuild the marriage culture.  Tomorrow we will hear from Pastor Rick Warren, Dr. Russell Moore of the Southern Baptist Convention, and Dr. Jacqueline Rivers, among others.


| Permalink


                                                        Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.