September 09, 2015
For immediate release
Bishop Scharfenberger’s Statement On Pope Francis’ Decision To Simplify The Process For Declaration Of Invalidity, Popularly Called “Annulment"
The following is a statement by Bishop Edward B. Scharfenberger regarding the papal document issued by Pope Francis today:
"The Holy Father, in today’s papal document Mitis Iudex Dominus Iesus (“Lord Jesus, Gentle Judge”), continues a theme of mercy that we have seen throughout his papacy and that will become even more of a focal point during the coming Holy Year of Mercy. In this document, he does not change the Church’s teaching on or understanding of the permanence or indissolubility of marriage. Rather, he focuses on making the process more accessible to those with serious questions about a troubled marriage so as to bring about a resolution sooner rather than later.
"If the union cannot be saved, Pope Francis’ decision to make the process of determining whether the marriage might be null or invalid less arduous and less costly is in keeping with what we try to do here in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany, where no one is ever turned away for the inability or unwillingness to meet the expenses involved in the process. You cannot put a price tag on God’s mercy!
"Once an official English translation is available, specifics can be addressed."