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The Legal Framework of the Church of EnglandA Critical Study in a Comparative Context$
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Norman Doe

Print publication date: 1996

Print ISBN-13: 9780198262206

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198262206.001.0001

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Marriage and Divorce

Marriage and Divorce

Chapter:
(p.357) 13 Marriage and Divorce
Source:
The Legal Framework of the Church of England
Author(s):

Norman Doe

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198262206.003.0014

For the Church of England, the right to marry in the parish church is treated as one of the rights in the package, so to speak, of rights enjoyed by parishioners. This chapter explores the basis and terms of this right, procedural matters relating to solemnization, and the canonical requirements for a valid marriage operating within the context of the civil law. These subjects are addressed directly by the church's central legal system though, unlike in the Roman Catholic Church in which tribunals are most active in the field of matrimonial canon law, the jurisdiction of the Church of England's courts to regulate marriages no longer exists. The Church of England's law remains largely undeveloped with regard to divorce and remarriage, about which there has been considerable debate recently, along with the legal position of mixed marriages. With respect to these matters, the practice of the church has been diverging fundamentally from that of the Roman Catholic Church, the dominant system of regulation in the Church of England is to be found in executively formulated norms issued centrally and episcopally at the diocesan level.

Keywords:   Church of England, Roman Catholic Church, marriage, solemnization, canon law, divorce, remarriage, mixed marriages, civil law, right to marry

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