New Catholic, Atheist Husband of 32 years, what is the process?

My friend is a newly baptized Catholic as of Easter Vigil 2014. She has been married for 32 years to her atheist husband. Their marriage 32 years ago was by a Protestant minister.

She’s pretty sure she needs a convalidation and he is willing, but their parish priest says they may have to go through marriage prep and a FOCUS test. Can you tell me if this is really necessary? Although the hubby is willing for the convalidation, he is probably not likely to go through marriage prep classes. They are not fertile, so don’t need NFP classes.

Thanks for your help.

No, she does **not **need her marriage validated in the Church. Her marriage is already valid.
Only Catholics are required to be married in the Catholic Church. At the time of her marriage neither your friend nor her husband were Catholic. That means when they exchanged their consent they entered into a valid natural marriage. There is no need for them to do anything.

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