Marriage Question

I am so happy that you have already spoken to the priest and that he is helping you through the process. Now the hardest part will be to let go of your worry and trust God.

I will say prayers for you:gopray2:

the refusal of the ex to cooperate with the investigation does not delay it, that simply means he refuses to give his side of the story. It will proceed in any case, without his evidence. $400 is very moderate considering the cost of the investigation and resources the diocese devotes to this work.

Do note that as usual, OP added information later on in the thread that was not provided in the beginning, which of course changes the answers, and makes even more valid our insistence that these personal quesions can only be answered by your own pastor, after you have given him all the facts about your personal situation. Any answer here is going to be general only, and will most likely end up being wrong because there is no way we can know all the facts.

People just starting the process of coming into the church sometimes simply do not know what they do not know. That is why I gave a thorough answer about the conditions to come into the church. Immediately following my post that started out “if there was a previous marriage…” the OP then provided more detail.

I find that many Catholics have a certain hubris and chide people for what they do not know. Coming from outside the church and joining as an adult in my 40s it is very noticeable. I do not think it is the intention of people to come across this way, but I will say again, we do not win hearts by saying I told you so or other similar phrases to have the last word.

There were many details that were not in the very first paragraph…age, current beliefs, family and financial status as well as whether or not either party was previously married.

Just my 2 cents worth.

I’m just happy that they are looking into joining the church and I pray nothing interferes with their joy!

Thanks for all the input and help guys. I didn’t purposefully withhold information. I’m sorry it seems like that right now. I do feel a bit silly though. I’ve been Catholic since birth (I’m 29) and even went to Catholic schools for 12 years. My lack of knowledge is needless to say embarrassing. My Fiancée and I are just in the early stages of marriage planning. I knew there were going to be some obvious hurdles to overcome first, that’s why we haven’t set a date yet. She wants to convert to Catholicism so she would have needed the annulment anyways. Every other girl I’ve dated that I took to Mass with me was always turned off by the length of the Mass. She really enjoys the formality and structure of Catholicism. She hates having to find a different church all the time b/c every Protestant pastor seems to have an agenda according to her. She hates that most Protestant pastors pick and choose what’s important and what is not to follow. She likes the universal concept of Catholicism. Hopefully the more she learns in RCIA classes if/after the annulment application passes will reinforce her idea of Catholicism.

Again. Thanks for the info. It has been very much appreciated.

She did have a dissolution but that was in court. I assume that is a different issue?

Whether she was married in the eyes of the state and in the eyes of the Church are completely different issues. She is free to marry civilly as the state granted a divorce, but in the Church, a divorce does not dissolve the marriage bond only the civil consequences. That bond must be investigated by the Church to determine if it ever existed at all in order to be declared null.

Correct, I do not mean a civil dissolution (divorce or civil annulment). I mean a dissolution through the Church tribunal. This would only come in to play if one or both parties of the marriage were unbaptized. It does not apply in all cases.

She was “dedicated” not baptized she found out. He was baptized though. We have his baptisimal record.

Here’s what worries her and it worries me as well. Her ex is a bad person. He comes from a bad family. His brother is in prison for trying to kill his ex wife. I feel unsafe for her like im poking a hornets nest with a stick by having him brought back in to this situation. She’s guinuinely concerned for her safety and is extremely nervous about them contacting her ex or his family. And I can definitely understand.

So, you just need to include that information for the tribunal so they are aware of the situation and can choose how best to handle it.

They make the contact, not you or she. She does not have **any **contacct with the spouse nor does he get any of her contact information.

Since she is not baptized, then she might be able to apply for dissolution of the bond under Petrine Privilege rather than a decree of nullity.

It’s time to stop speculating and start talking to the priest and tribunal.

I have trust me lol. I talk to him daily and before I even post on here. He isn’t always able to meet with me or get back with me right away due to his schedule. Everything I’ve voiced on here, I’ve voiced with him also.

Well my priest responded and said that he understands that there could be a serious threat but we’d have to just not continue with this then b/c they’d have to try to make contact with her ex.

I suggest you contact someone at your diocesan tribunal office (go to the diocesan website and look for the tribunal office or a listing for the Judicial Vicar).

I don’t think your priest is as versed in the process as he needs to be. Most parish level people aren’t.

They may indeed need make contact with the ex by sending out a letter or packet, but again that doens’t mean **she **has to have any contact and **none **of her personal information will be given out.

If she does not pursue and receive a decree of nullity or dissolution of the bond, then you cannot be married.


In my parish some of the priests are canon lawyers and have classes about the process. Good Luck to you!

No he never said that she would have to contact him. He said they would. She and her family are concerned that he will seek her out because she’s looking to marry again. Them contacting him could be enough of the motivation to do so unfortunately :frowning:

It’s ot very hard anymore to go to the County website and type in someones name and find their address. He doesn’t need the church to give him that, just a reason like this to do so.

Ok, so your choices are:

(a) Contact the tribunal, ask questions, get information and possibly receive options that minimize or eliminate your concerns, do everythign possible to obtain her freedom to marry. (I’m not sure, but it’s possible the ex does not participate at all if she petitions for dissolution under the Petrine Privilege-- again the tribunal is the best source of information for the options).

(b) Do nothing and break up because she isn’t free to marry.

No, I already called the Diocese after you mentioned it. I’m still awaiting a reply. Trust me, I’ve appreciated all of your information on this thread. I’m very much appreciative of it all. Thank you.

Yes, they will. All that is needed is for the non-Catholic party to agree to the conditions of the marriage, particularly to raise any children of the marriage as Catholics.
As the marriage is between two baptized Christians, it would still be sacramental.

Also, following Vatican 2, you no longer need a dispensation to marry a non-Catholic.

I’m engaged and we have had a couple of meetings with our pastor. My fiance is Anglican, but has decided to convert recently. Our marriage will likely take place after he completes RCIA, but even if he had not, the marriage would have been a sacramental one. All of the info above is direct from our pastor.

God Bless.

Veronica, the non-Catholic does not make a promise to raise the children Catholic. The Catholic party does.

Can. 1125 The local ordinary can grant a permission of this kind if there is a just and reasonable cause. He is not to grant it unless the following conditions have been fulfilled:

1/ the Catholic party is to declare that he or she is prepared to remove dangers of defecting from the faith and is to make a sincere promise to do all in his or her power so that all offspring are baptized and brought up in the Catholic Church;

2/ the other party is to be informed at an appropriate time about the promises which the Catholic party is to make, in such a way that it is certain that he or she is truly aware of the promise and obligation of the Catholic party;

3/ both parties are to be instructed about the purposes and essential properties of marriage which neither of the contracting parties is to exclude.

Also, in a subsequent post the OP indicates that his fiancee has a prior marriage, so most of this thread has become dedicated to discussing that aspect of the situation. She is not free to marry. She needs to petition for a decree of nullity or a dissolution of the bond. And, the OP’s fiancee is unbaptized therefore if they contract a marriage it will be a natural marriage until such time as she decides to be baptized, only upon her baptism would it become a sacrament.

A Catholic needs a dispensation from disparity of cult to marry an unbaptized person. The Catholic needs permission for a mixed marriage if the non-Catholic is baptized. See these canons:

Can. 1086 §1. A marriage between two persons, one of whom has been baptized in the Catholic Church or received into it and has not defected from it by a formal act and the other of whom is not baptized, is invalid.

§2. A person is not to be dispensed from this impediment unless the conditions mentioned in cann. ⇒ 1125 and ⇒ 1126 have been fulfilled.

Can. 1124 Without express permission of the competent authority, a marriage is prohibited between two baptized persons of whom one is baptized in the Catholic Church or received into it after baptism and has not defected from it by a formal act and the other of whom is enrolled in a Church or ecclesial community not in full communion with the Catholic Church.

1ke -

Since she is not baptized, could I marry her civilly to give her my name and it would only be a natural wedding and then proceed with the annulment process? That way her ex would have a hard time finding her with a new name he does not know of should he try to find her. Obvoiusly it’s not how I’d choose, but I’m very concerned about her safety.

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