Confirmation and Convalidation


#1

Good Afternoon,

I have a bit of an interesting and somewhat difficult situation. My wife was raised Catholic and I was baptized in the Protestant church. We married six years ago while I was in graduate school, and at the time, our faith life was not strong. Thus, we opted to marry outside of the Church. Since that time, I have found myself developing a strong inner-calling to pursue my relationship with Christ. In this journey of attending mass nearly every day over the last few months, I am strongly connecting with Catholicism and feel like the Catholic church is where I am being called. The difficulty has come with my wife who has reservations to getting our married convalidated as she is not sure herself that she is being called back to the Church. Obviously, I don't want to make her uncomfortable, yet I am feeling a very strong calling to developing a sacramental life through the church.

From what I understand, the marriage would need to convalidated before I could be confirmed. I was hoping the community might have thoughts for me as we work through this process. Finally, this is my first post to the forum, so thank you for having me!


#2

If the only thing lacking was Catholic form, you could also talk to your pastor about the option of radical sanation if your wife is unwilling to exchange consent in the Catholic form through convalidation.


#3

Just a "however" ...
If either of you were previously married to another, you would need to tend to that.

I hope you'll make an appointment with your pastor soon!


#4

Thank you for the responses. The situation is incredible difficult for my wife and I. She is at the point where she is still trying to figure things out spiritually and her past with the Church was not positive (largely connected to family issues). So, she has large reservations about getting the marriage blessed and confessing (as she says, she doesn’t feel that the marriage is invalid and thus, does not know what she would confess to). I want to give her space yet at the same time, feel a strong desire to participate in the sacramental life of the church. I truly value her willingness to not “go through the motions of the matrimony sacrament” as I would want it to be meaningful. I have been speaking to a wonderful priest who has been helpful, but I stuck between putting my wife in a difficult and painful situation or surrendering my ability to participate in the sacraments. To quiet52, there were no previous marriages so really, it simply was my wife’s departing from Catholic form that is the issue…

Many thanks again for your thoughts…


#5

[quote="journeyfaith, post:4, topic:327510"]
Thank you for the responses. The situation is incredible difficult for my wife and I. She is at the point where she is still trying to figure things out spiritually and her past with the Church was not positive (largely connected to family issues). So, she has large reservations about getting the marriage blessed and confessing (as she says, she doesn't feel that the marriage is invalid and thus, does not know what she would confess to). I want to give her space yet at the same time, feel a strong desire to participate in the sacramental life of the church. I truly value her willingness to not "go through the motions of the matrimony sacrament" as I would want it to be meaningful. I have been speaking to a wonderful priest who has been helpful, but I stuck between putting my wife in a difficult and painful situation or surrendering my ability to participate in the sacraments. To quiet52, there were no previous marriages so really, it simply was my wife's departing from Catholic form that is the issue...

Many thanks again for your thoughts...

[/quote]

Since lack of form was the only impediment, I suggest you discuss radical sanation with your pastor.


#6

Unfortunately, the Priest struck a pretty tough tone about my wife needing to come to the sacrament as her salvation is at stake. He suggested that would be the only way for me to receive the sacraments. It's really a tough situation but with time, I am sure God will lead us together.


#7

[quote="journeyfaith, post:6, topic:327510"]
Unfortunately, the Priest struck a pretty tough tone about my wife needing to come to the sacrament as her salvation is at stake. He suggested that would be the only way for me to receive the sacraments. It's really a tough situation but with time, I am sure God will lead us together.

[/quote]

He is not correct. Radical sanation can be granted. I would suggest you contact the Judicial Vicar of your diocese and explain your situtation. Look on the diocesan website for the contact information. I agree that your spouse should return to the Church but their refusal to do so should not bar you from coming into full communion.

Please talk to the judicial vicar and if necessary contact this organization for help:

stjosephcanonlaw.com/


#8

Your wife would need to go as the Church does not view the marriage as sacramental as she was not invited in the first place (She being the Church)…in order to ask the Church to view it as sacramental…your wife would have to say that she is sorry that she didn’t follow the marriage laws of her faith. Other then that…the convalidation is kind of nice…like renewing vows…:wink: I’ve been through it and liked it. It doesn’t mean I don’t celebrate our anniversary date of our actual wedding. It was a marriage before…but became a sacrament when it was convalidated.


#9

[quote="Annabelle_Marie, post:8, topic:327510"]
Your wife would need to go as the Church does not view the marriage as sacramental as she was not invited in the first place (She being the Church).....in order to ask the Church to view it as sacramental...your wife would have to say that she is sorry that she didn't follow the marriage laws of her faith. Other then that...the convalidation is kind of nice...like renewing vows.....;) I've been through it and liked it. It doesn't mean I don't celebrate our anniversary date of our actual wedding. It was a marriage before...but became a sacrament when it was convalidated.

[/quote]

Annabelle Marie, congratulations. I think it's wonderful that you were able to have your marriage convalidated and that it was and remains a good experience for you. However, it the situation the OP describes, convalidation may not be possible, at least at this time, and therefore he may wish to explore radical sanation as encouraged above by 1KE. The requirements differ from those of a convalidation.


#10

That is correct, felsguy. The central concern for my spouse would be entering into the matrimony sacrament with doubts about her faith and relationship to the Church. I want to make sure I don't put her in such a position that would bring up such moral/spiritual conflicts. A further question might be (and would obviously weigh heavily on my decision)--suppose radical sanation was granted, would she be able to return to the Church in the future and if so, would a future convalidation be necessary? I would assume the radical sanation would bless the marriage but the sacrament would likely not be valid for my spouse?

Thank you again, everybody!


Can Protestants Remarry Validly?
#11

[quote="journeyfaith, post:10, topic:327510"]
suppose radical sanation was granted, would she be able to return to the Church in the future

[/quote]

Yes.

[quote="journeyfaith, post:10, topic:327510"]
and if so, would a future convalidation be necessary?

[/quote]

Radical sanation is a convalidation.

[quote="journeyfaith, post:10, topic:327510"]
I would assume the radical sanation would bless the marriage but the sacrament would likely not be valid for my spouse?

[/quote]

No. The marriage is either valid or not, for both of you. The marriage would be valid by virtue of the sanation.


#12

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