Married, separated male saints or blessed?


I’m unsure if this fits best under ‘vocations’, ‘spirituality’ or ‘family life’, so please bear with me. My wife left me in 2011. Since then, if not before, she has begun a sexual relationship with another man. She has let me know, in no uncertain terms, that there is no chance of us reuniting.

As far as seeking the opinion of a Catholic Marriage Tribunal on the validity of our marriage is concerned, both a priest and a lawyer with a degree in Canon Law have confirmed that I would have to seek a civil divorce first. This course of action is unaffordable to me, financially and unpalatable to me, in a spiritual sense. St Paul tells us not to take other believers to court. Although my wife has lapsed, she is still my sister in Christ.

All of this leads me to find myself seeking a good way of living as a married though separated man with one child. In Scripture, I find the example of Hosea. There is also the example of the founder of Methodism, John Wesley, although he and his wife were childless. Please does anyone know of male catholic or orthodox saints who lived out a similar situation faithfully?

Thanks in advance.

Although the party who was in your situation was female, you may want to look into the case of Cornelia Connelly. She was married to an Episcopal priest, and they both decided to convert to Catholicism. Pierce C. then sought ordination as a Catholic priest, and she founded the Sisters of the Holy Child Jesus. Later, he recanted, and not only left the Catholic church, but sued her for resumption of conjugal rights. He lost. She remained faithful, although her ex-husband spent the rest of his life speaking against the Catholic church and also alienated their many children from her. But she remained faithful…

There are many books about Cornelia Connelly.

Jesus also said lewd conduct was the exception to the no-divorce law. I would start saving up for the civil divorce, because you most certainly have grounds for both it and the following annulment.

Divorce in the case of infidelity is a matter of self-defense: there’s no telling where the other party has been and what they’re carrying.

There’s always the possibility of the other man turning on her, and her returning to you. In that case, I would put her through medical testing to make sure she’s clean. Or explore the possibility of a Josephite marriage.


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