Annulment question?

I am a Mormom who is wanting to convert to Catholicism and my fiancee is a cradle Catholic. I was married previously but we received a divorce due to my husbands SSA issues and his problems with physical intimacy. My fiancee was previously married to a Buddhist friend of his for immigration purposes but never “intended” to actually be married. These were both just civil ceremonies and neither one of us was married in any church. We are wanting to be married in the Catholic Church and were wondering if we both need annulments and if so, are we eligible for annulments based upon what I have posted. god Bless you all.

The answer for both of you is to talk with your pastor. He’ll be able to ask the right questions and give you the info you need to go forward. Best wishes to you.

If you wish to marry in the Church you both need annulments. That your marriages were civil and that you are divorced does not mean you are free to marry in the Church. Further if your fiance married someone for immigration purposes…well all I can say is :eek: yikes. That’s against the law.

Contact your parish and they can guide you as to how to proceed. Annulments are not “Catholic divorce.” They rule whether or not a marriage actually took place depending on a number of factors including lack of form, prudential judgment, lack of freedom among others.

You say you are wanting to convert. Are you in an RCIA program? If so please inform the RCIA director about your situation and he or she can give you additional information as to how your marital status impacts the process. As a member of the RCIA team, we’ve often found that our hopeful converts are unaware of these potential roadblocks.

I went through the annulment procedure and found it extremely helpful in understanding both myself and Catholic teaching regarding marriage. It is a bond for life and taken very seriously. I’ve often thought that all engaged couples should fill out annulment paperwork before the ceremony just to expose any spiritual or emotional roadblocks to a blessed and lifelong marriage.

Lisa

Since your intended fiancé is a Catholic, he was bound by the Catholic laws of marriage and if he did not follow them, which your post indicates, then his situation is called “lack of form” and is very straightforward.

Which avenue is best for you to pursue regarding freedom to marry will depend on several factors. Whether or not you are validly baptized (with a Trinitarian baptism, not an LDS baptism… some LDS were baptized in Protestant denominations before becoming LDS and others were born and raised LDS so only have LDS baptism), whether or not your first husband was baptized (and if so whether or not Catholic), whether or not your first husband was married before marrying you, and the details of your marriage situation.

For you there are several possibilities depending on the answers to the above details. Pauline Privilege dissolution of the bond if neither you nor your first husband were baptized, Petrine Privilege dissolution of the bond if you were not and he was, lack of form if your first husband happened to also be a Catholic married outside the Church, a Ligamen case if your first husband was married before he married you, or a full tribunal nullity investigation if none of the others apply or enough information cannot be obtained to base a petition on those other factors.

So you see, details matter and it is best to sit down and walk through it with the local Catholic pastor. Take it one step at a time.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.