What is the internal forum solution and can it be used instead of the formal annulment process?:gopray2:
Divorced Catholics often find themselves in situations requiring annulments. The “internal forum solution” proposes that, if such a Catholic is certain that his previous marriage was invalid, it is not always absolutely necessary to prove it in the external forum – through the Church’s formal annulment process. Rather, the internal forum, or forum of conscience, is satisfactory.
This issue was addressed by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith’s document Concerning the Reception of Holy Communion by the Divorced and Remarried Members of the Faithful in which Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, Prefect stated (under instruction by Pope John Paul II), “It must be discerned with certainty by means of the external forum established by the church whether there is objectively such a nullity of marriage” (emphasis added).