Annulment papers sent in maiden name


#1

Have any women out there received annulment papers addressed to their maiden name instead of their legal name? A friend on mine just did and this upset her very much because it sounded like the Church assumed that an annulment was a given.

Is this normal practice to address someone by a name they no longer use?


#2

Assuming the husband’s family name is a civil thing, not a Church thing.

She signed the marriage documents with her maiden name & her maiden name is listed on her marriage certificate. That’s what the Church uses for decrees of nullity. She is still Sue Jones even if she assumed Jack Brown’s family name after the marriage. Her case would be referred to as the Brown/Jones case, not the Jack & Sue Brown case.


#3

[quote="m_crane, post:1, topic:225066"]
Have any women out there received annulment papers addressed to their maiden name instead of their legal name? A friend on mine just did and this upset her very much because it sounded like the Church assumed that an annulment was a given.

Is this normal practice to address someone by a name they no longer use?

[/quote]

I am so sorry your friend is going through this pain. Did she legally change her name? If she legally took back her maiden name in the divorce there would be no reason for the Church not to address her by it - after all most likely (if she grew up in the Church) this is the name on her certificates. A name is just that - not a decision on a decree of nullity. At my own parish even though my divorce is not finalized (I moved in the middle of it- I consider my decree of nullity process to have started the day my husband left) due to the ministries I am in my spiritual director (with permission of the pastor) told me to go ahead and put my maiden name on everything that way when I do get my final divorce at this point I will not be bombarded with questions.


#4

I wonder if this is a policy in all things church related?

For example, I was SHOCKED when on my children's baptismal certificates the parish indicated my maiden name. This happened in two parishes. I was married in the Catholic church too so it was a little upsetting. It was explained to me that this is how the church kept records using birth names on official documents. Not sure if that is the same thing with this just a guess.


#5

[quote="m_crane, post:1, topic:225066"]
Have any women out there received annulment papers addressed to their maiden name instead of their legal name? A friend on mine just did and this upset her very much because it sounded like the Church assumed that an annulment was a given.

Is this normal practice to address someone by a name they no longer use?

[/quote]

I don't handle this paperwork but anything we would mail to a married woman regarding any sacraments, including sacramental certificates, will use her maiden name, that includes the baptismal certificate and record of her child


#6

[quote="Monicad, post:4, topic:225066"]
I wonder if this is a policy in all things church related?

For example, I was SHOCKED when on my children's baptismal certificates the parish indicated my maiden name. This happened in two parishes. I was married in the Catholic church too so it was a little upsetting. It was explained to me that this is how the church kept records using birth names on official documents. Not sure if that is the same thing with this just a guess.

[/quote]

The child's baptism is recorded with the father's name and the mother's maiden name. That's how the Church keeps track of records.

I know that I had one mother say, "It makes it look like we're not married!" but women don't take their husband's name in all cultures so the Church records the maiden name for everything.


#7

[quote="Monicad, post:4, topic:225066"]
I wonder if this is a policy in all things church related?

[/quote]

I think you may be on to something here. When both of my children were baptized, my maiden name was put on their birth certificates. I was a bit surprised, but I didn't think much of it. I think that they might do it for record keeping purposes. That way all of "Sue Jones" paperwork is under the same name, rather than some of it being under "Sue Brown," for example.


#8

Thank you all for your replies.

I know my friend is going though a difficult time, having her marriage annulled was not her choice, so I know she is very sensitive about how it is to be handled.


#9

[quote="SummerSmiles, post:7, topic:225066"]
I think you may be on to something here. When both of my children were baptized, my maiden name was put on their birth certificates. I was a bit surprised, but I didn't think much of it. I think that they might do it for record keeping purposes. That way all of "Sue Jones" paperwork is under the same name, rather than some of it being under "Sue Brown," for example.

[/quote]

It's a way of keeping bloodlines clear too.

Think about how often historical parish registers are used for genealogy research. Recording the mother's maiden name is important to keep families straight. In small communities, particularly, there could be several children with the same given & surnames. Some could even have moms & dads with the same given names. Throw in the mother's maiden name and you have a much clearer view of the family picture.


#10

I was baptized/confirmed as an adult. When I went through my annulment I had to request those records from that parish. The baptismal and confirmation records were in my “married” name. The priest helping me with my annulment told me that was done in error and that it should have been in my maiden name.

A woman can have a zillion “married” names, but she only has one maiden name. The Church keeps excellent records - this is why.

~Liza


#11

I second that it's probably for clean record keeping. I've not been married so everything is in my maiden name :D, but I do a lot of genealogical research; and it is so much easier when the records are in the female's maiden name -- and most of the church records that I've seen have had the woman's maiden name listed.


#12

Thank you all. It all sounds very sensible to me.


#13

It’s not just the Church, but civil authorities too – both the state I was born in and the state I currently live in list the mother’s maiden name on birth certificates. My birth certificate shows my father’s name and my mother’s maiden name (though she did take his last name), and my children’s birth certificates show the same.


closed #14

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