O Lord Thou shalt open my lips and my mouth shall declare Thy praise.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

The Tridentine Rite's Instruction on Marriage

Just found this via His Hermeneuticalness (here via here). My comments and emphases:
Encouragement for engaged couples

The following passage is the introduction from the old rite of Marriage. I think that it sums up many of the things that we would want to bring to the mind of a couple who are being married. [Seeing how the ceremony itself starts with immediately with the vows, such an introduction is important to have some sort of proper beginning to the ceremony.]

N. and N., you are about to be married. Now for children of God and members of the Catholic Church marriage is more than a human contract. It is something supernatural and holy and must be approached with that thought in mind. [Love is not a human emotion; it is a grace. Marriage is not a human institution; it is a Divine Institution.] It was God himself who joined our first parents as husband and wife, and with the first nuptial blessing made them the founders of the family and the home. And it was our divine Saviour who raised marriage to the dignity of a Sacrament, thus adding to it the grace he won for us when he died upon the Cross. [Marriage is not a worldly thing, but rather a vocation and a Sacrament...] Remember what St Paul told the Ephesians. The union of a husband and wife is only to be compared with the union between Christ and his Church. [...whereby God shows forth His love for His Bride the Church through the couple. The more the couple's marriage mirrors Christ's sacrificial love for the Church, the healthier it is.]

The life, therefore, to which God has called you, is noble and sublime. Yours it is to cooperate with God in his creation, bringing into the world new lives, to be children of the Church and heirs of the kingdom of heaven. [Marriage is not a worldly thing, but the act of being taken up into God, into His love, into His role as Creator. It is not something the couple does, but rather something God does to them. It is not the result of emotion and commitment to each other, but God's vocation and His plan for them.] Here today, before the altar, in the presence not only of your relatives and friends but of the angels of God and the whole court of heaven, [Marriage does not just exist on the physical level but on the spiritual level as well.] your two lives are to be united in a bond that will endure as long as life shall last. May God in his goodness never cease to strengthen the love that unites you.

Have no fears but rather great confidence. [The Devil wants nothing more than to discourage people into thinking that a virtuous life isn't possible.] Fulfil your religious duties, your prayer, your reception of the Sacraments. [Remember what's the most important.] Learn to love each other, but also to understand each other, sometimes to put up with each other. [Remember the old phrase "many people are married to their penance". Anyone who's been married for any length of time can sympathize.] Keep a place for Our Lord in your home. Where he is, there is no room for the evil things that can destroy your happiness and drive God’s grace away. [God has to be the priority. If you do not seek God, you will fail since the Devil will seek you no matter what.] Ask his holy Mother and St Joseph that they may be with you as well. Model your lives and your home upon theirs [We have the saints as role models and encouragement.]; and may their prayers obtain for you many years of happy life together.
I commented on the Anglican words of introduction here (before finding out these words existed). The Anglican words do a great job of explaining what marriage really is. The Traditional Catholic words (as one would expect) do so with much more precision.