Pauline Privelege and Reluctant Divorced Spouse

My wife and I are inquirers and were planning on taking RCIA this fall. We met with our deacon and discussed our intentions of conversion and some of our impediments, namely our previous marriages.

We both are divorced and were never baptized Christians as well as our previous spouses were never baptized. We were told that we could try to have our previous marriages dissolved using the Pauline Privilege.

Here is the sticky part and my question. My wife is now saying that she does not want to convert and will not participate in the Tribunal process for her previous marriage.

I still want to convert. I attend mass every Sunday, am planning on taking the RCIA classes when they start and want to proceed with my previous marriage dissolution.

Is my spouse’s refusal to get her marriage dissolved and her reluctance to be baptized going to be an impediment to me getting baptized and become in full communion?

Personally, I would discuss this with my pastor or bishop.

I have heard of similar cases in which the Petrine Privilege was invoked. It is slightly more complex, it has to go to Rome, but was easily accomplished within less than a year.

Your partner’s refusal to participate in the annulment process definitely is going to be an issue, but it’s not insurmountable:

You probably know this already, but until you and she receive declarations of nullity you will be asked to live as brother and sister. If you abide by that requirement, then you will be received into the Church without hesitation! :smiley:

She might not like it or understand it, but she’ll have to live with it if she wants to continue living with you. Even if she does not embrace the Catholic faith, she must honor the fact that you do. Surely it would not be too much trouble to accommodate the religious beliefs of a spouse!

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