Catechism of the Catholic Church #1601-1602


"The matrimonial covenant, by which a man and a woman establish between themselves a partnership of the whole of life, is by its nature ordered toward the good of the spouses and the procreation and education of offspring; this covenant between baptized persons has been raised by Christ the Lord to the dignity of a sacrament."


Sacred Scripture begins with the creation of man and woman in the image and likeness of God and concludes with a vision of "the wedding-feast of the Lamb." Scripture speaks throughout of marriage and its "mystery," its institution and the meaning God has given it, its origin and its end, its various realizations throughout the history of salvation, the difficulties arising from sin and its renewal "in the Lord" in the New Covenant of Christ and the Church.


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Marriage (Matrimony)


bond is perpetual and exclusive, 1638

conjugal fidelity, 1646, 1648-49, 2364

consummation of, 1640

divorce of separated persons about to remarry civilly, 1650

effects of, 1638-42

freedom to contract, 1625, 1628-29

in God's plan, 1601

goods and requirements of conjugal love, 1643

greatness of, 1603

matrimonial chastity, 2349

mixed marriages and disparity of cult, 1633-37

nullity of, 1629

in the order of creation, 1603-05

in the preaching of the apostle Paul, 1616

in the preaching of Jesus, 1612-15

renouncing, 1618

in Sacred Scripture, 1602

as a sign of the covenant of Christ and the Church, 1617

under the pedagogy of the Law, 1609-11

under the regime of sin, 1606-08

sexuality in marriage and its significance, 2360-62 (see also Sexuality)

See also Divorce; Sacrament(s)

fecundity, 2366-72, 2373-779

        and adoption of children, 2379

        children as the gift of, 2378

        as cooperation with the love of God, the Creator, 2367

        openness to, 1652-54

        periodic continence and the regulation of birth, 2370

        and procreation to be regulated, 2368


                as a great suffering, 2374

                and medical techniques, 2375-77

                and significance of conjugal life, 1654

purposes of marriage

        cooperation with the Creator's work, 372

        directed toward the salvation of others, 1534

        good of the spouses, 1660

        as man's vocation, 372, 1604-05

        procreation and education of offspring, 1652-53, 2366

        transmission of life, 372, 2363

indissolubility of marriage, 1644-45

        fidelity of conjugal love, 1646-48

        the marriage bond, 1639-40

        marriage in the words of Jesus, 1614-15

        matrimonial consent, 1625

                as an essential element, 1626

                as the foundation of the indissolubility of marriage, 1601, 1627, 2367

        nullity of marriage, 1629

        as a requirement of conjugal love, 1644

        significance and nature of matrimonial consent, 1627-28

        transmission of faith in the domestic Church, 1656

        unity and marriage in the Old Law, 1610-11

as a sacrament, 1601-58

        celebration of, 1621-24, 1627

        as consecration, 1535

        ecclesiastical form of celebrating, 1630-31

        grace of the sacrament of, 1641-42

        main effects of, 1638-40, 2365

        mixed marriage and disparity of cult, 1633-37

        preparation for, 1632

        raised to the dignity of a sacrament, 1601

offenses against the dignity of, 2380-91

        adultery, 2380-81

        divorce, 2382-86

        free union and concubinage, 2390

        incest, 2388

        polygamy, 1645, 2387

        sexual relations contracted before marriage, 2391


Marriages, trial, 2391


Married couple


fidelity and, 2364

harmony of the married couple and physical complementarity, 2333

human sterility and, 2374, 2377

marriage and, 1603, 1624, 1636, 1642, 2363