Need help with a wedding situation


so a guy i know just got engaged

problem is, he’s divorced

i know i will be invited to the wedding because we’re on the same sports team

my parents will not understand because they are in the same situation, and they coach the sport

do you guys have any advice? on the one hand, i don’t want to approve of sin, on the other, i don’t want ot give off a holier than thou attitude or cause a huge fuss.


Is your friend Catholic? If he was never married in the eyes of the church, then he is free to marry.


You may attend the wedding, but refrain from being part of the wedding party (Best Man, Bride’s Maid, etc).

If he is not Catholic, there is a chance that his first marriage may have been invalid, and that this would be a valid marriage. The annulment process is not mandatory for non-Catholics.


he is not catholic, i don’t really know anything about his first marriage really, just the fact that he was married and got divorced


No problem really, unless he’s “marrying” a dude.


Huh? His first marriage is putatively valid, Catholic or not. He would require a nullity investigation before attempting a second marriage. It is not optional. The Church recognizes the marriages of non-Catholics as valid and putatively so until proven otherwise.


I would focus on how do I give off holiness.

"…the Church, “striving to proclaim the Gospel to all people,”[cf. Ad gentes, 1] has had the single aim of fulfilling her duty of being the messenger of the Good News of Jesus Christ - the Good News proclaimed through two fundamental commands: “Put on the new self” [Cf. [size=]Eph 4:24, 2:15; Col 3:10; Gal 3:27; Rom 13:14; 2 Cor 5:17] and "Be reconciled to God."2 Cor 5:20] (Pope Paul VI; Evangelii Nuntiandi, 2)

You could start with a short prayer, “Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, lead me and guide me” and grow to the extent of becoming a more complete disciple. One who is always will to be taught. This disposition of docility with humility, which is indeed a struggle, will bear fruit universally. Frequent reading of the Word of God, which is counsel by and for the Church toward the good direction of understanding. “If you will not believe, you shall not continue.” (Isa 7:9) In the other translations is says “…you shall not understand” or "…you shall not be established.

God Bless you. Don’t ever feel isolated in this forum, please contact me privately if you so wish.


Concerning discipleship, I would like to cite from the Commentary on the Gospel of John by St. Bonaventure, he says,

“four characteristics describe Nicodemus and show that he was a suitable learner: the goodness of his life, the dignity of his office, his desire to learn, his aptitude to learn.” (ref. Jn 3:1, 2)

The most dignified of offices is one with poverty.


If you are an adult it is not really up to your parents whose wedding you atten or don’t attend. Not is it their place to approve or disapprove.

Those who state that it is “ok” for a non catholic to remarry are mistaken. God’s law is for everyone. He is validly married to his first wife until proven otherwise, Catholic or not.

As to whether you should attend, that is a matter to discuss with your pastor. In general we should not support people in their sin, approve it, or give scandal by participating in it. Your pastor is in the best position to evaluate this specific situation.


I am afraid you are mistaken; the Church would require an annulment investigation only if he were marrying a Catholic. Non-Catholics are not obliged to observe Catholic law regarding annulments; they may attempt a new marriage if they believe their first marriage to be null without any formal investigation. Unless the bride in this situation is Catholic, the church assumes no jurisdiction.

Even In the case of successive putative marriages attempted by a non-Catholic hoping to marry a Catholic, the Catholic tribunal would start by investigating the first marriage. If the first marriage were found null, then it would presume the man were free to attempt marriage the second time. The second marriage would then have to be investigated for defects, and so on. Only if the first marriage were found valid would second or later putative marriages be be categorically considered invalid.


But Church law is based on Scripture - every Christian is obliged to live by Jesus’ words-
Luke: “Everyone who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery, and he who marries a woman divorced from her husband commits adultery.
Matthew: But I say to you that everyone who divorces his wife, except on the ground of sexual immorality, makes her commit adultery, and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery.
Mark: And he said to them, “Whoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery against her, and if she divorces her husband and marries another, she commits adultery.”


Jesus allows “divorce” in the case of invalid marriages.

[quote=Matthew 19:9]“I say to you, whoever divorces his wife (unless the marriage is unlawful) and marries another commits adultery.”


A Christian could only enter a new marriage if his previous were invalid. For non-Catholics, there is no formal procedure for determining nullity.


Which means they are not free to marry another.

The Church is the only entity with such authority, the ability to determine nullity. So unless/until they recognize and approach that authority, they are not in any position to remarry. They may not determine validity for themselves.


This is untrue, as I have patiently explained.

This is a position shared by Father Grondin (See Here), and other apologists.


You are applying to that post a meaning that is not there.


I do not understand your objection.


You do not understand Fr. Grondin’s post. You are trying to infer something that is just not there. All people are bound to the doctrine of indissolubility of marriage! It is even easier for non-Catholics to enter into valid marriages, because they are not bound to observe canonical form like us. Therefore, a non-Catholic who has been married once is almost always validly married, and after a divorce may not attempt remarriage at all, even outside the Catholic Church, without a declaration of nullity from her.


I don’t necessarily disagree, although Fr. Grondin’s post is only one piece of evidence.

I do not wish to overstate my case. My original point was that the original poster should not actively participate in the wedding, but may still attend. The wedding may be presumed invalid, but there is not enough evidence for the the OP to definitively know this.

If someone were to split this discussion from the original thread, I will continue.


Umm… that would be the post in which Fr Grondin wrote, “If he was not a Catholic… then his exchange of vows is a valid marriage”, right? :wink:

So… the OP’s buddy is not Catholic, and is attempting to remarry. What’s the basis of your claim, then, that his first marriage was invalid? :rolleyes:


I said I would only address the topic if the thread were split. If you ask the moderators to split the and they agree, I will address your question.

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