General Electiom 2010 -Tax Breaks For Married Couples

It is interesting that the Conservatives have given a nod towards traditional family values, by offering a tax break to married couples who have an income below the cut off point of £44,000 before paying the higher tax rate. Certainly the whole conept of being married today has gone out of fashion. More and more couples are living together and fewer are ending up being married. I doubt whether an extra £3.00 per week would encourage more people to get married. However on the other hand it is making a statement that marriage is being recognised by the state as a important contribution to family life. I also notice that civil partnerships would be given the same tax break. I wonder if the time has come for the Church to become more pro-active in putting forward the case for marriage. The thing is many of the young people who are living together but not married are doing so with a good heart and a willing intention to stay together and also stay faithful to each other. If my assumption is right then why is it that so few take the formal step of agreeing their commitment in a public forum? Its not because they are afraid of commitment, many of them have made commitments to joint mortgages for hundreds of thousands of pounds. however such commitments also have the potential of reaping a material profit. The living together can be seen as an additional conveinent way of getting on the property ladder. For some the legal commitment is not the marriage ceremony but the signing of the mortgage with the mortgage broker. Somehow the church has not explained or modelled marriage in such a way that those who live together see any difference or advantage in being married. One thing I do know is that too many people equate the wedding ceremony with the need for a big expensive celebration. I wonder if what I said in my last post about individualism has had an effect on the way individuals react to the idea of commitment when it comes to relationships. Marriage has at its centre the idea that two become one and actually belong to each other. For the Christian it is a relationship that reflects the depth of love and commitment that Christ has towards the church. So marriage is seen as a physical analogy describing the close relationship betwen Christ and the Church. In many ways if we need to make the case for marriage I think we also need to make the case for the Church. The Church needs to explain to its members and also to the world around the reason for its existence. Christian marriage and the church are intricately woven together. So I wonder if there is a place for a national advertising campaign promoting marriage and also offering the opportunity for couples who are making plans to live together to consider the advantages of marriage. So what do you think? How do we engage a generation to rethink the place of marriage in their relationships?
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