This Pope continues to surprise us! A few weeks ago he married Carlos and Paula, 41 and 39 years old respectively, the cabin attendants on a flight from Santiago, Chile.

First of all, we must explain that they were a couple that had been preparing for many years to be married in the Church, but the great earthquake in Chile on February 17, 2010, the original date set for the wedding, had not only destroyed their parish church, but it had also dashed their dreams.

Marriage celebrated aboard a planeIn the meantime, they had a civil marriage and two children were born. So, faced with their ability to “dare” and their request to be one day united in marriage, the Pope, the pastor of the universal Church, immediately obliged and celebrated their wedding. As Pius XII already affirmed in a document of 1943, “in the sacrament of marriage, the Ministers are the man and woman who marry” (see AL 75) and their bond is founded on the free manifestation of consent before a representative of the Church.

It is clear that on that flight the Maximum representative himself was present. The Pope himself had emphasized in a catechesis on the family that “the organization of common life is increasingly stuck in a bureaucracy completely alien to fundamental human bonds” and this sometimes obscures and burdens, even in our communities, the celebration of love between man and woman.

It is so beautiful to discover how marriage, freed from bureaucracy, has the ability to make hearts fly, supported as it is by the embrace of the Church.

Fr. Paolo Gentili


*** Photo Source: Getty Images

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