Are non-Catholic marriages valid for non-Catholics?

I know that Catholics are required to get married within the Church, but are non-Catholic marriages valid for non-Catholics? If two people who are not Catholic get married in whatever church or religion they believe in, would the Church say they are guilty of fornication or adultery if they have marital relations afterwards?
Thank you and God bless you!


The Catholic Church recognizes the marriages of non-Catholics-even atheists as valid. It does not hold non-Catholics to the requirements it has for its own members.

Fr. Vincent Serpa, O.P.

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