Annulment/sacrament of marriage query


#1

My sister, a baptized Catholic, and her husband, who is Jewish, were married in a Unitarian ceremony over 20 years ago. Since then, my sister has returned to the practice of the faith, and would like to have their marriage blessed. Her husband, however, was divorced before marrying my sister, and his first wife is living. They were married by a Baptist minister.

Would my brother-in-law be required to obtain an annulment of his first marriage before their marriage can be blessed by the Church?

Does the Church recognize as a sacrament any marriage that is performed in a valid religious tradition, i.e. a Protestant, Jewish, Hindu wedding ceremony?

Thank you for your assistance.


#2

Your sister needs to contact a priest as soon as possible. Every case is different and he will be in the best position to guide her.


#3

Definitely talk to her priest.

I would say based on what you have in your post, is that her husband would need a declaration of nullity on his first marriage before he could be married in the Catholic Church to your sister. Also, since he is Jewish I assume he hasn’t been baptized, which means even if they are able to convalidate their marriage in the Catholic Church, it will not be a sacramental marriage; it would be a valid natural marriage. A sacramental marriage is a valid marriage between 2 people who have been validly baptized.

Also, in most cases of invalid marriages, your sister is most likely in a state of mortal sin (I say most likely because I don’t know if her and her husband are living as brother and sister etc…) and should not receive communion until the marriage sistuation has been cleared up.


#4

[quote="filiaecclesia, post:1, topic:232011"]
My sister, a baptized Catholic, and her husband, who is Jewish, were married in a Unitarian ceremony over 20 years ago. Since then, my sister has returned to the practice of the faith, and would like to have their marriage blessed. Her husband, however, was divorced before marrying my sister, and his first wife is living. They were married by a Baptist minister.

Would my brother-in-law be required to obtain an annulment of his first marriage before their marriage can be blessed by the Church?

[/quote]

sort of, he has to go through part of the process. Unless he had catholic input on the first wedding it would not be a full blown annulment

Does the Church recognize as a sacrament any marriage that is performed in a valid religious tradition, i.e. a Protestant, Jewish, Hindu wedding ceremony?

Thank you for your assistance.

not always there are conditions as first marriage only.

Since he pledged a marriage earlier he is not considered free to marry thus no blessing until the proof is presented his first marriage attempt failed. Also he has to pledge to not obstruct her practice nor her childrens practice of catholism. By all means she should visit the Priest.

hope that helps


#5

[quote="filiaecclesia, post:1, topic:232011"]
My sister, a baptized Catholic, and her husband, who is Jewish, were married in a Unitarian ceremony over 20 years ago. Since then, my sister has returned to the practice of the faith, and would like to have their marriage blessed. Her husband, however, was divorced before marrying my sister, and his first wife is living. They were married by a Baptist minister.

Would my brother-in-law be required to obtain an annulment of his first marriage before their marriage can be blessed by the Church?

Does the Church recognize as a sacrament any marriage that is performed in a valid religious tradition, i.e. a Protestant, Jewish, Hindu wedding ceremony?

Thank you for your assistance.

[/quote]

To answer your first question, most likely. But ask a priest for specific details as to what needs to be done. Each case is different.

As for the second question: a sacramental marriage is a marriage between two validly baptised (trinitartian formula) Christians. Both the husband and the wife would need to be baptised. Your brother-in-law is Jewish, which means the marriage can be blessed, but it's not sacramental unless he wants to convert to Christianity (doesn't sound like it from your post). This is fine, as the Church allows mixed marriages and doesn't require every marriage be sacramental in order to be valid/recognized/etc. However, seeing as your sister did not get permission to marry her husband, her marriage isn't currently recognized as valid by the Church, so getting the marriage blessed is a really good idea to fix this problem. :thumbsup:


#6

Great responses, and very helpful. My sis will talk with her pastor asap, but will be surprised to learn all the finer points as outlined in your posts above. Perhaps she's in for more than she bargained for!

Very warm regards to all who commented!


#7

[quote="filiaecclesia, post:1, topic:232011"]
Would my brother-in-law be required to obtain an annulment of his first marriage before their marriage can be blessed by the Church?

[/quote]

Your BIL has a prior bond. In order to validly marry your sister he would have to pursue a decree of nullity OR a dissolution of the bond under either the Pauline or Petrine Privilege.

This chart is a handy reference showing the options depending upon the baptismal statuses of the two spouses in the first marriage:

diocs.org/Portals/1/Documents/Tribunal/Decision_matrix.pdf

[quote="filiaecclesia, post:1, topic:232011"]
Does the Church recognize as a sacrament any marriage that is performed in a valid religious tradition, i.e. a Protestant, Jewish, Hindu wedding ceremony?

[/quote]

The Church recognizes the marriages of non-Catholics as valid. Since your BIL is Jewish, he is not baptized. Therefore his first marriage is not a sacrament. It is called a *natural *marriage. A marriage between two baptized non-Catholics would be valid and a sacrament.


#8

Thanks for the chart, 1ke! I also appreciate your thoughts. I'm sure these situations are not rare today (though sad), and I hope my sister and her husband do whatever is needed to have their marriage blessed.

All good,


#9

No, he doesn’t. She has to promise to have the children baptized Catholic and to raise them in the faith. He is informed of her promise but he doesn’t have to promise anything. That is a change from the way it was when I married a non-Catholic under the 1917 Code of Canon Law.


#10

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