Curia: PN mayor’s comments ‘defamatory’, refuses to revisit Tribunals’ efficiency

Curia says mayor's comments that annulments are 'matter of money and contacts' were defamatory.

The Catholic Church has taken umbrage at comments by the Nationalist mayor of Lija, Ian Castaldi Paris, who denounced the procedures for marriage annulments inside the Church’s tribunals as “a matter of money and contacts”.

Castaldi Paris’s comments were made to sister newspaper Illum last week, echoing claims by retired Judge Philip Sciberras that the Church was concerned the introduction of divorce would rob of it of a vital stream of revenue. The Curia says it actually loses money on the ecclesiastical tribunals.

In comments to Illum, a spokesperson for the Curia said Castaldi Paris’s declaration was “serious and defamatory on the officials and employees of the Tribunal, not having any specific information in his hands.”

The Curia also said it was not considering revisiting the way its tribunals work – notoriously having cases for marriage annulments taking up to eight years – and whether it could shorten the duration of such cases.

“The operation of the Tribunal, like any other Church Tribunal, is examined regularly by the Segnatura Apostolica supreme tribunal, as well as by the Archbishop who is responsible for the tribunals,” a spokesperson said.

The same spokesperson said “no specific accusations” or complaints of alleged favouritism or kickbacks made against the tribunal were ever received. “If so, they would be investigated thoroughly.”

The Curia would not comment on how many people have received more than one annulment. “Since the number is itself not large and the people in such cases could be easily identified, it is not prudent [to release this information].”

Castaldi Paris, who is also the PN’s president of its councillors’ college, praised the position of Labour leader Joseph Muscat not to take a party position on divorce given that there are MPs who do not support its introduction. “I would have done the same. I agree with Joseph Muscat for saying so and for granting a free vote.”

Castaldi Paris said that despite his personal stand against divorce, he concedes that those passing through difficult situations have a right to a new beginning. He also criticised the Church directly: “From what I hear, obtaining an annulment from the Church is more an issue of money and contacts than anything else.”

Read more in Illum’s digital edition

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And how long has the Church been defaming homosexuals, archbishop? Stuff you and your Church. You lot are all about money and keeping those in charge, the hierarchy, in very comfortable positions. The Church dispenses annulments to its mates. It is as corrupt a practice as dishing out indulgences.
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Malta has accepted EU membership and the consequent one-size-fits-all regulations. All talk is now irrelevant. Divorce will get through. Its already coming through the window in various formats. The Church must suffer the consequences for not having stood up to be counted when it knew very clearly of the imminent introduction, not only of divorce but also of several other social legislation going against its beliefs. Like it or not, sooner rather than later, even the state (PN for the time being) must start towing the line of mainstream EU fixed menus and reconsider its close ties with the Monsigneur society as titles continue to become more irrelvant and socially unacceptable, in the light of piling corruption and scandals perpetrated by the previously unquestioned religeous and political classes - both of whose under-arms stink to higher levels of us plebian mortals who have been led up the garden path for centuries. Unfortunately, unlike referenda tied up with EU membeship, there will not be another opportunity for voting for or against divorce before perhaps a decade, unless the PL would risk putting its head on the block at the next election and decide to gate-crash the controversial legislation. In ten years time the church would have slid considerably further down the power / influence grid, particularly as more scandals come to light. Even now it has no right to impose its decadent will on minorities.
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And I WAS UNDER the IMPRESSION that the smiling bishop, did say, that the kurja, thus himself, has nothing to do with the NO propoganda. How wrong I was, or is it the other way around? He was wrong?
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Mutu mutu qrunu f'butu. Give me Gonzi (sr) anytime of day. At least you knew where you stood with him
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Adrian Busuttil
What complete crap. The church is showing itself for what it really is - a wicked and hypocritical body of dry old men.
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Everything about the Catholic Church is about keeping the elites within it in a comfortable lifestyle. Bishops and archbishops live very comfortably thank you very much. Not much has changed since Luther.
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L-apparenza tinganna
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I use to think that my parents were exaggerating when they use to tell me what they went through in the 60's, even so they encouraged me to attend church regularly.Seeing what am seeing today with the church turning a blind eye to the suffering of some people, conjuring with a heartless government , God rest their souls they were so right., and you who preach love are nothing but hypocrites of the highest order.
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hah - now we are getting closer to the truth. No wonder they reacted so strongly - i think Paris just sank their flagship. Trust money to be the reason for the church's position!
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Log on: mazzun.wordpress.com
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Of course it will not comment on who got more than one annulment when everybody knows its Eddie Fenech Adami's son. And isn't the fact that eight years is a really long time enough to mellow the Tribunal heart on the way it treats some of the people who opt to get an annulment? For more info on annulment and divorce in Malta log on:
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How I wish that for once the church see itself humbly for what it is... an insitution governed by it collective ego whose main aim is survival of the same institution, even putting aside Christ's teaching of compassion and refraining from judging others. It's up to each individual to seek closure and ask God for forgiveness for having tried and failed. At least divorce means that one has tried and failed whereas annulment makes one into having been living a lie, which lie is never questioned anyway as long as the couple are happy together.
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You gotta be seriously joking dear Church Hypocrits. No "Alleged Favoritsm" you say???.. What the hell was Fenech Adami son's case then???? Pure Favoritsm? 3 annulments from the same Church during 8 years!!!!! That's a record for Malta's standards! This when a regular couple is BEGGING for an annulment is waiting for one annulment in 8 years...or more! MONEY and POWER....Thta's all the Church cares about. Goes who's going to Hell now?!!!!
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Norman Lowell and other challenged you, to challenge him naming the person, Who got marriage annulment from the so called Curia, in just two months. Also same person, after he got annulment married again. After some years, same person ,for the second time ,also with children from the second marriage, got again marriage annulment for the second time. Explain this, Who makes the law commands, and can turn it anyway he likes. Any Journalist can asks this to the Curia? Not as for example , that we care what they do, Just to know:)