Divorce and Communion


I am not a Catholic yet, but am seriously considering it. I went through a divorce and was shunned by the evangelical protestant church that we went to. Now I am remarried. Neither marriage was in the Catholic church.

What is the church’s position about a divorced and remarried woman taking communion?

I’ve heard all kind of things.

Your help would be appreciated.

Thank you.



Before you can receive communion you will need to have a decision from the chruch regarding the validity [sacramentally speaking - not civilly] of marriages …

Every case is somewhat unige and is therefore hard to determine “unofficially” in a general sense…

That being said … the Catholic Church will start with the presumption that your inital marriage was valid … a divorce would not prevent you from entering the church and receiving communion …

The second marriage prevents you from receiving communion until the marriage issues are detangled …

When you begin the RCIA [Rite of Initiation of Adults] process [or if baptized in another christian denoimination - the parish formation required befor your profession of faith] discuss your marriages with the parish priest … begin the annullent process as soon as you can …

Pray and trust in the Holy Spirit …

Does your current spouse also want to become catholic or are they already catholic? …


Since you have remarried, you would need to have your prior marriage investigated to determine whether or not it was a valid marriage. I am in the process of doing that now myself. Neither I nor my former spouse were Catholics when we married.

You should make an appointment with your priest to discuss this. In the meantime, you might want to take a look at this for more info on annulments:



GREAT resource, dulcissima, thank you for posting it.


You know, we learn a lot hanging out on these forums, don’t we? I had my initial questionnaire and 45 page narrative already completed when I went in for the first time to see my priest about this. He is a canon lawyer and looked over my case and said I had done such a good job he wants me to take a class in the fall so that I can be a parish resource for those thinking about an annulment. :slight_smile:


Good for you, that is awesome! I’ve heard a similar story from another CAF member. I think CAF is going to take over the world soon. :wink:

My pastor was impressed with my petition but I was only able to write it because I went to our adoration chapel every time I had to work on it. That’s my best tip for anybody faced with the process.


That’s an interesting approach. I found I had a hard time settling down enough to write (or having the privacy, since I have 4 kids). So, that might have been good for me too. I have spent a lot of time in adoration these past few months though. I think adoration and the rosary are what is holding me together right now.


my first marriage was doomed from the start. My ex was perverted and, as I learned later, a bi-sexual. Would that constitute an invalid marriage?

My second marriage is beautiful. He is my soul mate.

None of these people are Catholic and neither am I yet.



It may well indicate that the marriage was invalid, of course there are many other factors that must be investigated as well, which is why the Church has tribunals for the purpose.

If you don’t really have a case for an annulment, you’ll hopefully get some indication early on.


So if my two prior marriages are not annulled, what do I do?


You only have one ex-husband, right? You’ll only want one annulment then :slight_smile: - an annulment is a declaration that a marriage was never valid, which ISN’T what you want the Church to say about your current marriage!

If your second is the keeper then you’ll possibly need a convalidation or something to get it sacramentally blessed.

Basically, if your first marriage was found to be valid it’s not like you’d have to go back to your first husband or anything, but you would be in grave sin if you continued to live with your second husband other than in a platonic brother-and-sister kinda way. You’d need to do some real soul searching as to exactly how important the Catholic faith is to you.


I have 2 ex husbands. Kind of like the woman at the well, I guess.

I want to become a Catholic very much. I guess that I will go to the class and talk to the priest there.

Thank you very much for your help.



Not quite the woman at the well :wink:

It’ll make it more difficult having the two marriages that need investigating, but persevere and above all keep praying. :yup:


Perhaps it is in an indication that you did not know that marriage is supposed to be permanent? If you went into it thinking you could always get divorced if it didn’t work out, that could be grounds for an annulment.

But yes, do talk to your priest.


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.