Step Parent Adoption


I am not entirely sure how to ask my question so I am just going to state facts and hope all is well.

I was married to a member of the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day saints. When we lost our three month old son in January of 2015, I became Catholic after a year of serious soul searching. I grew up Jewish and so my first experience with Jesus was in the LDS (Mormon) church. So naturally, I was incredibly confused. Our marriage was never blessed by the church and so our children and marriage were not valid in the eyes of the church and God. Fast forward to January of this year (2018) I fled domestic violence with my children back to my home state. I met a wonderful man who I plan on marring in a Catholic Mass, he is not Catholic but is Christian non-denominational. If he adopts my children, will they be considered legitimate because I have a recognized Catholic wedding?

Thank you,



It you were not Catholic, and married your first husband legally and validly, does that not mean you are married and need an anullment? And your children are legitimate.

I am sorry to hear about your son. Prayers.


We were married in the LDS Church and Legally. But it was not and still is not recognized by the church. I am legally divorced.

thank you for your prayers


I’m not arguing, just trying to understand. Why are LDS marriages not recognised by the Catholic Church? Civil, Protestant, Jewish, etc. marriages are.



If your children were born within legal wedlock, they are legitimate any way you look at it. Legitimacy of offspring is a matter of civil law rather than church law / canon law.

As for your other questions regarding annulment and valid marriage in the Catholic Church, have you talked to your priest who is preparing you and your fiancé for marriage?

I am so sorry to hear of all of the difficult things you have been through. Welcome home to the Catholic Church, and may you find and continue to find peace and joy in your walk with Christ.


I would think they would be recognized as a valid natural (non-sacramental) marriage, much like a marriage between two Jewish people, two Muslims, or any other two unbaptized people (because Mormons do not have a valid baptism). Either way, it sounds like she would still need to petition for a decree of nullity before marrying again. But of course sitting down and talking with the priest preparing them for marriage would be the OP’s best option, since he knows her situation and can best answer all her questions.


Thank you so much. I love the Catholic Church and I am so glad I converted.


In what way do you mean illegitimate?

Your husband would be adopting a child. Are children considered illigitamate whi come into a family through adoption? No idea who my sons parents are in China. Could be married, maybe not? Could be a first marriage or third? Not married? I have never heard of my son being labeled legitimate or not. The Catholic Church does not have the same rules about people as Judaism. I know in a Jewish marriage there are limits, such a child may not marry a Cohen who wishes to stay a Cohen, priestly class. I’m sure it’s more complicated than I’m writing. We just don’t work that way. Back when the church was also the government it may have had meaning. Certainly the church encourages marriage. I can’t recall a thing on his baptism certificate saying he is legitimate or not.

By the way I don’t like the word in civil society either. Every child has a mother and father. A baby is a blessing. For the sake of the abortion issue let’s let go of this word.


Not meaning to pry…
But, you did ask a question. Don’t your kids have a father already? Or, as you mentioned ‘domestic violence’ were his parental rights terminated? I also, don’t see why an LDS wedding would be ‘invalid’.
,more than another church ceremony.


“Legitimacy” is a civil issue, not a spiritual one. It has to do with the legal rights and responsibilities a parent or presumed parent have toward their children. In this day and age, where we have conclusive, easily obtained genetic testing, it’s almost a civil non-issue. Parents are legally responsible to support their own biological or legally adopted children regardless of their marital status. The Church does not consider any children to be “illegitimate”.


“Illegitimate” is a legal term. Every child is legitimate in the eyes of God.


Actually, if both of you were free to marry (neither had former marriages or were baptized Catholic), the Church recognizes the valid, natural marriage.

Speak to your Tribunal.


Can I ask why you are asking about “legitimacy”?


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