Is the Pope taking a shot at Prince Charles?

Gift to Prince a reminder of the Church’s view on divorce

Sometimes a gift is more than just a gift, and you wonder whether Pope Benedict XVI is taking a poke at the British monarchy with a memento he plans to give Prince Charles, on the occasion of Charles’ first papal audience since he divorced Princess Diana. Next week, after receiving the Prince and the Duchess of Cornwall, the Pope plans to present  a “luxury facsimile” of the 1530 appeal by English peers to Pope Clement VII, which asked for the annulment of Henry VIII’s marriage to Catherine of Aragon. That would be the one the Vatican rejected—prompting Henry to break with Rome and causing the formation of the Church of England. A lot of water has gone under the bridge since then. Yet the Vatican still holds marriage to be a sacred vow that can’t be broken by temporal laws. Charles, as we know, was granted a divorce from the Princess of Wales in 1996, and remarried to divorcée Camilla Parker-Bowles after Diana died in a car crash.

The Times

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