Despite the fact that the Greek Orthodox Church does not allow divorce, there are exceptions to this ban. Here are some of them:
Table of Contents
The sanctity of the marriage bond
Several religions have defined the sanctity of the marriage bond in different ways. In the Orthodox church, the term is used to describe the sacramental marriage bond. The sacramental marriage bond is a promise made by a couple to love each other in the presence of God. This promise is strengthened through canonical rites, prayers, and anointing with holy oil.
The sanctity of the marriage bond in the Greek orthodox church is based on the teachings of Jesus. He taught about marriage in the midst of an adulterous generation. He says that divorce is only permitted in cases of impotence or sexual immorality. He also taught that God cannot put apart what God has joined together.
Some Christian branches accept divorce as a fact of life. Others have argued that the sanctity of the marriage bond is not absolute. In order to have a sound marriage, the basic elements of the marriage must be present.
Unlike other branches of Christianity, the Roman Catholic Church teaches that the sacramental marriage bond is not dissolved by divorce. It also maintains civil rights of both parties.
Recognizing that a marriage has ended because of failure or sin of one or both spouses
Until the beginning of the sixteenth century, the Church had defended the sanctity of marriage. Marriage was an expression of the New Testament ideal and the Church tried to maintain that ideal. When the state usurped civil power, the Church fought back and reaffirmed that marriage was a sacred bond between God and His people.
The Orthodox Church believes that marriage is a gift from God. It is a preparation for the Kingdom of God. When a marriage is broken, the Church helps the couple to reconcile their differences. The Orthodox Church will not perform a second marriage between Christians and other religions or cults.
Marriage is a sacrament, which means that it is an action that is given to a couple by God. It is a spiritual path, which involves the growth of the Holy Spirit within a couple. Marriage gains perfection when a couple regularly shares the Eucharist.
Ecclesiastical divorce is a special type of divorce granted by the Church when one partner does not fulfill their responsibilities in a marriage. In some cases, the Church allows the couple to remarry. Ecclesiastical divorce is issued by the local presiding bishop, and couples must make an appearance before the ecclesiastical court to seek this type of divorce.
Remarriage as an act of compassion
Traditionally, the Orthodox Church states that it allows remarriage. This is a concession to the weakness of human nature. Its acceptance arises from a concern for the plight of those suffering from the pain of divorce.
Although it is a fact that the Church allows remarriage, it does so under a strict set of dogmatic limitations. These limitations are called canons and they are the official governing document for the Church. The canons specify the conditions for the sacraments, the rules for the administration of the Church and the worship of God.
Traditionally, the Orthodox Church allows remarriage when the couple has done penance to atone for their sins. They have been able to find some closure emotionally and legally. They are reconciled to the church, and have found a new spiritual purpose in life.
There are exceptions to this rule. In some cases, the offended mate may want to remarry in order to pursue a new life of singleness. They can seek counsel from their pastors or elders.