Religion: Waiting to Wed

A plan to avert divorce

July 1 is a day to remember for young Roman Catholics in the diocese of Phoenix. Since that date, by order of Bishop James S. Rausch, any couples wishing to marry in the church have been required to give their priest six months' advance notice. During the waiting period they must undergo a highly structured course of preparation and counseling, complete with a written "premarital inventory" that tests the conjugal attitudes of the would-be husband and wife.

Rausch's six-month rule may strike some as draconian, but the bishop is no mossback. He built a reputation as a progressive...

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