Remarried to receive Eucharist?

I have an important question concerning the Catholic faith. Why do we Catholics allow remarried to now receive the Eucharist when they never could before? And I thought the Catholic Church has never changed it’s teachings on morale issues. I love the Catholic faith, and am asking to understand the church’s position.

The premise is simply incorrect.

Any potential particular case (one could argue rare case) where a persons culpability etc is not present for mortal sin etc etc (much would need to be discerned) - does not mean that one can say “we allow the remarried (invalidly) to receive the Eucharist.”. The discipline of the Church remains rather what it was - even if there could possibly be some exceptions in some very particular cases.

Remarried people have been allowed to receive communion for quite a while. The process involved a recognition of nullity of the earlier marriage and a validation of the subsequent marriage.

But I think what you are describing as a moral issue is a discipline based on two different doctrines.

Thanks for the help. In case I do not understand the church’s full position on this, can you all send me some links?

Here is the latest:

But the Catholic Church says here.
Marriage is indissoluble.

Catholics who attempt marriage following a divorce—without a declaration that the first bond wasn’t after all a valid marriage—enter a (presumptively) adulterous relationship. So long as they maintain a sexual relationship with their new partner, they cannot judge themselves to be in a state of grace and therefore cannot worthily receive Holy Communion.

To return to the sacrament, the partners must repent—which requires ending the relationship—and be absolved.

Marriage is the conjugal union of sexually complementary spouses—husband and wife.

Non-marital sexual acts, including all same-sex sexual acts, are seriously sinful.

Same-sex sexual desires are intrinsically disordered: that is, not ordered to the good of conjugal union. Experiencing such desires or inclinations is not sinful, but acting on them is.

It sounds to me a remarried person must give up their ‘‘second’’ marriage if they are to receive the Eucharist again, or that the marriage be found to be annulled from before.

Or for serious reasons (like raising the children) - “live as brother and sister”.

Yes that is the norm.

Any potential exception that would discerned would be rather an exception.

(Similar perhaps to say what is exceptionally discerned with other certain cases where there is grave matter but not the culpability of such…)


This would mean, then, that they’re not “remarried”, but rather, “married for the first time, following previous invalid attempt(s) at marriage.” :wink:

It appears that certain adulterers. ( divorced and remarried) could be able to recieve the Eucharist without a state of grace. This would be a departure from dogma.
However, it is still unclear if this is the case. Some cardinals have written, asking the pope to clarify. However this may have to be clarified by a future pontiff.

No that would no be correct.

Can you elaborate?

One is not to receive Holy Communion in a state of mortal sin.

See posts above

Even if there is in some particular case -where there is discerned an exception by the priest regarding an invalidly remarried person - even they would need to be in a state of grace.

How can one be in a state of grace while committing adultery!?

Isn’t this exactly what is being asked to be clarified?

The fact that we have to say “the latest” is troubling.

At the very least we can say that if you are under the shepherding of kasper or live in Argentina then, you may recieve the Eucharist while in an active state of adultery.

Therein lies the problem.

How does a remarried person (without an annulment) who deliberately chooses to continue in the second conjugal union, achieve the state of grace? This deliberation is not bypassed or excepted by “discernment” or “discussion on the internal forum,” but it is rather intensified. With all this discernment and discussion, certainly one has the freedom and knowledge to realize that these acts are grave matter. Then in choosing to persist, the choice is solidified.

It is impossible then, unless during all this mysterious “discernment” - which nobody can explain clearly - some distressing factor persists, i.e. “He will beat me to death,” “She will take all of my money and my children,” etc. (Having a sex drive is NOT a distressing factor.)

On the other hand, one might realize that he or she is likely to sin again but sincerely intends not to. This person is getting there and would even be in a state of grace, provided there is a good confession.

Additionally, there is the case of foreseeing certain situations in which there would be little or no culpability for the act itself which is then intended habitually - and this is almost always on the part of the woman being coerced through fear of some kind. Could fear of the loss of temporal goods be sufficient to excuse one through distress? Only up to a point - and that point is the one where reason regains control over fear. (This is different for women, because they can simply allow the act to occur, while men basically can’t but must commission it themselves.)

Finally, there is the question of normal sexual temptations between persons in a second union who are striving to live as brother and sister. Probably there could be some cases where an individual act occurred without grave sin - but if steps are not taken to minimize temptation, one’s true heart is slowly revealed while the will becomes weaker and the intellect darker on the path back to a clearly and intentionally adulterous relationship. This could also reveal a secret pride, and is itself a temptation to breed habitual carelessness for offending God - and that is directly against charity.

Mad times we are living in. Post-Fall, that is.

Civilization has been confused ever since secular government asserted authority over a Sacrament of God (marriage).

The grace of matrimony flows from God, not government. God joins and divides only by death. Government does not join, and divides only by dollar.

The Church determines if a marriage exists, or if it does not. Period. Two people can obtain a legal status from government, live together, bear children and raise them unto the fourth generation. That does not mean that they were married in God’s eyes.

Matrimony is a sacrament perfecting something already naturally existing. There is such a thing as a non-sacramental valid and binding marriage. This is the teaching of the Church.

It is possible that the culpability is reduced where the person is not in mortal sin…

There would be more to it of course in any discerned exception…but that addresses that part of your question.

Again such a possible case is simply* not* the norm. The discipline of the Church is that the norm is that the invalidly remarried are not to receive Holy Communion (see the Catechism for details etc. and my post above).

If there is some case that is carefully discerned by the Priest - that is simply rather an exception (and one can argue a more rare occurrence).

I imagine that such cases could for example include a woman in a poor country somewhere in Africa, whose first husband abandoned her without annulment, and whose second husband will only support her children if there are marital relations, and without his support the children would die of hunger. The woman is lacking the sufficient freedom of the will if she wants to keep her children alive. I also assume that such cases would include second or subsequent unions in many parts of the world where the husband simply does not ask for consent, and living as “brother and sister” is not an option for the wife and neither is leaving the man, if she could not survive (and her children) alone in the country where she lives. This is just my opinion, but those are the cases that I have in mind. These cases would be extremely rare in western democracies, but not so rare in the developing world.

Correct. But, the entire world seems to think there is such a thing as divorce in God’s eyes. Moses allowed it. Jesus condemned it. God alone ‘divorces’ by calling souls to Himself. The problem is with Catholics who stray and go with man’s laws, then cry to the Church to fix it all.

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