Here’s to it! As we Orthodox say, Many Years to them both!
That’s the thing about old-fashioned marriage: you presumed this was the person you were going to spend the rest of your lives with, and so you operated out of that presumption. Now, as divorce spreads, that presumption weakens in alot of people, or so you hear. That’s a problem, and it probably has an untold impact on our society.
I’m not talking about staying if there’s physical abuse or outright emotional torture going on.
It probably helps that these two are reasonably-devout Catholics. Divorce wasn’t a sin in Catholicism (though remarriage while your ex-spouse is still alive is), but frowned upon, and relatively rare, rarer I think than in Protestantism. I think still Protestants are more likely to divorce than Catholics, though divorce is spreading among Catholics. Andrew Greeley might say that traditionally, Catholicism’s “social capital” helped reinforce its principles among its adherents: neighborhood, parish, church, school, organizations (Knights of Columbus, Ajax Ladies, Ancient Order of Hibernians, etc.), back then even parish quasi-banks.
For Catholics traditionally this wasn’t really a “doctrinaire” approach like for “family values” Protestants today, it was just their religious culture. As a Greeley character put it, tongue mostly in cheek, “Homicide, maybe. Divorce, never!”
I’d have to do more homework, but I’m not sure the vaunted increase in Catholic annulments of marriages in recent years is a percentage increase. Their population numbers have grown in step with the nation’s population – they’ve been steadily approximately a quarter of the population for a century or more. Have annulments outpaced population growth? Or has there really been no change in the rate of annulments, just that the numbers have now grown so large? Remember, despite their minority status here, the U.S. is one of the biggest Catholic countries in the world, up there with Brazil, Mexico, the Philippines….