South Africa: marriage and family campaign

South Africa’s Church has started a campaign in support of the family and marriage. It is inspired by the country’s ongoing marriage issue, which includes polygamy and the legalisation of homosexual unions.

Based on Pope Francis’ apostolic exhortation Amoris laetitia, the local episcopate reminds that “the family is cannot be ideal or pre-programmed, but requires continual growth in its ability to love.”

In addition, “While the facts on marital and family life may not inspire optimism, there are family hearths that are examples of what can be achieved, despite the challenges experienced”.

The Bishops are inviting to participate in this initiative divorced or separated couples in order to obtain correct spiritual direction for building and mending their relationships.

Procreation and child raising will be covered as well as comprehending the notion of ‘forever’ in the marriage and family, as a part of God’s intention. This necessity is due to the fact, that the country has two marriage models: civil marriage and customary marriage, which varies by ethnicity and accounts for roughly 3% of all weddings. Whereas the formal marriages are always between two people, certain cultures allow for polygamy. Thus, a project is also proposed to establish polyandry (when a woman has more than one husband at the same time).

The administration is drafting proposed laws in the form of a “Green Paper”. With the conclusion that “marriage is an institution that should be open to everybody, regardless of gender”.