VATICAN CITY — Pope Benedict XVI has told priests to do a better job counseling would-be spouses to ensure the marriages last and says not everyone has an automatic right to a wedding.
Benedict made the comments Saturday to the Roman Rota, the Vatican tribunal that decides marriage annulments. An annulment is the process by which the church effectively declares that a marriage never took place.
Benedict acknowledged that the problems that would allow for a marriage to be annulled cannot always be identified beforehand. But he said better pre-marriage counseling, which the Catholic Church requires of the faithful, could help avoid a "vicious circle" of invalid marriages.
Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.