Re-married mother who is Catholic


#1

All,

I apologize if this is the wrong forum, but I’m doing this for my mother. My mother lived in a very physically and emotiionally abusive marriage for over 20 years and her and my father divorced (he initiated the divorce). My mother is a very divout catholic and has since remarried a wonderful man, however she cannot recieve communion as she knows. Other than my father agreeing to annul the marriage they had, is there anything she can do so she can recieve communion again? This is very important to her. Last year she went through breast cancer surgery and the loss of her mother who was also a devoute catholic of 92 years in her church. Please advise all who can. Thank you so much.


#2

Welcome to Catholic Answers! I'm sorry for the loss of your grandmother.

Your father does not need to "[agree] to annul the marriage they had." If your mother and father were validly married, nothing either of them do now can nullify it. And nothing that happens after a valid marriage is contracted can nullify it either, even abuse. If, however, something essential to marriage was lacking at the time the marriage was attempted, then a Catholic Tribunal can, on examination of the marriage, declare it null. That is, they could say that a valid marriage never took place, and both your father and mother would be free to marry. Your father does not have to agree to anything in order for this happen, though he will be contacted and given the option to contribute to the examination if he would like.

Your mother should go talk to her parish priest to ask about starting the annulment process. The reason she cannot currently receive communion is because of her irregular marriage situation. However, the priest might advise her that she can receive communion if she goes to confession and also agrees to live "as brother and sister" with her partner.

God bless.


#3

Your mother needs to make an appointment with her pastor, lay out all the facts, and ask for his advice.


#4

1ke is right. She can also ask her priest about the possibility of living as brother and sister with her current husband so that she may return to the Sacraments while the validity of the marriage is investigated.


#5

The above posts have covered all of the essentials that you need. Have her speak with her priest as soon as she can…:thumbsup:

Peace
James


#6

The fact that he was abusive is sufficient evidence for a decree of nullity.

With the abuse situation, your mother may wish to speak to someone other than your local pastor. She can call the Tribunal at your diocese. They have counsellors just for that purpose.

Having a proxy experienced in the dynamics of abuse will be less painful for your mother and may prevent unnecessary delays.

Lots of good advice above.

God bless you and your family.


#7

[quote="ilySHJ, post:6, topic:301002"]
The fact that he was abusive is sufficient evidence for a decree of nullity.

With the abuse situation, your mother may wish to speak to someone other than your local pastor. She can call the Tribunal at your diocese. They have counsellors just for that purpose.

Having a proxy experienced in the dynamics of abuse will be less painful for your mother and may prevent unnecessary delays.

Lots of good advice above.

God bless you and your family.

[/quote]

That is not entirely true. Abuse may oftentimes be a sign of a psychological incapacity to consent, etc. However, abuse in and of itself does not always show an invalid marriage.


#8

[quote="ilySHJ, post:6, topic:301002"]
The fact that he was abusive is sufficient evidence for a decree of nullity.

[/quote]

[quote="joanofarc2008, post:7, topic:301002"]
That is not entirely true. Abuse may oftentimes be a sign of a psychological incapacity to consent, etc. However, abuse in and of itself does not always show an invalid marriage.

[/quote]

Amen Joan...We should refrain from saying too much in these situations. The best advice we can give is that the person speak - in person - to someone knowledgeable who can address the specifics of each individual case.

[quote="ilySHJ, post:6, topic:301002"]
With the abuse situation, your mother may wish to speak to someone other than your local pastor. She can call the Tribunal at your diocese. They have counselors just for that purpose.

Having a proxy experienced in the dynamics of abuse will be less painful for your mother and may prevent unnecessary delays.

Lots of good advice above.

God bless you and your family.

[/quote]

This is good advice if the person, for whatever reason, would feel uncomfortable talking to their own priest/confessor.

Peace
James


#9

Your mother needs to talk to her priest. She needs to take her case to a tribunal. They will investigate your parents’ marriage. The first stage in this is speaking to the priest as I initially said. It’s important to remember that what often gives a person grounds for a civil divorce does not demonstrate a marriage is invalid. Physical abuse of a spouse is grounds for a civil diviorce. Nothing that happens after a marriage invalidates it. So, your father’s abusive behaviour would not be grounds for an annulment. Until your mother has regularised her marriage situation she must refrain from receiving communion. Of course, she may still go to Mass.


#10

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