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Catechism of the Catholic Church

The marriage bond

1639 The consent by which the spouses mutually give and receive one another is sealed by God himself. 143 From their covenant arises "an institution, confirmed by the divine law, . . . even in the eyes of society." 144 The covenant between the spouses is integrated into God's covenant with man: "Authentic married love is caught up into divine love." 145

1640 Thus the marriage bond has been established by God himself in such a way that a marriage concluded and consummated between baptized persons can never be dissolved. This bond, which results from the free human act of the spouses and their consummation of the marriage, is a reality, henceforth irrevocable, and gives rise to a covenant guaranteed by God's fidelity. The Church does not have the power to contravene this disposition of divine wisdom. 146


143 Cf. Mk 10:9.

144 GS 48 § 1.

145 GS 48 § 2.

146 Cf. CIC, can. 1141.

English Translation of the Cathechism of the Catholic Church for the United States of America © 1997, United States Catholic Conference, Inc.