Terrified that my marriage is invalid

This is my first post here, and I thank you all in advance for taking the time to read it.

I was married this past Summer to a wonderful man, but sadly, I was in a state of unconfessed mortal sin at the time of the wedding. My fear now is that due to this, my marriage is invalid and that I committed a grave sacrilege by receiving this sacrament in the condition I was in.

I also received the anointing of the sick while in the same unconfessed state.

Can anyone more scholarly than myself shed some light on this?

Thank you and God bless.

I would suggest asking this in the Ask an Apologist forum.

Agreed. Fr. Serpa is in a far better position to comment than we are.


I concur that you ask a good priest.

My understanding is that being in mortal sin would NOT invalidate the marriage. It would, however, be an additional mortal sin for receiving the sacrament, i.e. sacrilege. Just like, if a priest says Mass in a state of mortal sin, he sins grievously, but the Mass is valid.

I am confused by the anointing of the sick. Usually this sacrament includes confession. Did the priest not offer confession before giving you the rites? If not, it’s sacrilege again.

God Bless

Receiving a Sacrament (any Sacrament) while in a state of mortal sin does not *invalidate *the Sacrament.

One does not receive the *grace *from the Sacrament until one is reconciled through Confession.

Talk to your priest in Confession, he will put your mind at ease.

From my personal opinion, I don’t think your marriage is invalid. People get married all the time in a state of mortal sin, especially non Catholics, and the church recognizes marriage of non baptised people as well.

If you went to confession afterwards and confessed that you received the Sacrament of Holy Matrimony while in a state of mortal sin, and you confessed your mortal sin, then it should be forgiven and you shouldn’t have to worry anymore as far as my thinking goes…

Unless this mortal sin is something that would affect your marriage otherwise as deemed by the same determinations for annulment by a tribunal. (JUST for an example, not that you did this, but if you slept with your fiancés sibling or something the night before the wedding)

Those are just my thoughts, I would love to hear you pose this question in Ask and Apologist as well. :thumbsup:

Or simply as your priest.

Thanks very much for your reply.
The anointing was done immediately after I had suffered a miscarriage, and I was unaware that I needed confession prior to receiving it until well after the fact. The priest didn’t mention it, either.

You will all be happy to know that I have been working diligently on a thorough examination of conscience and will be returning in true contrition to the Father very soon.

God bless~

I was also in a state of unconfessed mortal sin when I married my husband in the Church 7.5 years ago, and on top of that, neither of us was confirmed! :bigyikes:

Fr. Serpa assures me for good reason that my marriage is valid. We have since gotten confirmed together and are now fully practicing Catholics. Don’t panic. If all the proper forms were observed for your marriage, you are probably completely safe.

I’ve posted this question in the “Ask an Apologist” forum, so I’m eagerly awaiting the answer as well. Although I feel pretty secure in the knowledge of all the educated folks who have answered thus far. :thumbsup:


Hooray for forgiveness, right??? :smiley:
Truly, I feel a sense of peace returning to me this day, moreso than I’ve felt in many, many months.

Great to hear! Don’t worry about getting every sin down. Go to confession sooner, rather than later, and do your best. As long as you do your best, and don’t intentionally hold back any sins, ALL your sins will be forgiven.

Also, if you were unaware of the need for confession, you committed no mortal sin. One can not sin mortally “by accident”. Mortal sin requires that we know what we were doing is wrong, and we do it anyway.

God Bless

So many Good answers here.

The Best one is that you need to talk to a Priest about this.

As to your marriage being Valid, I’m going to be just a bit more cautious than the others and say, it will depend on what the mortal sin is.
If it such that it would preclude your entering into a valid marriage, (such as you lied about accepting children, or you hadn’t gotten an annullment from a previous marriage) then of course your marriage would have to be considered invalid.

If there is any question in this regard your confessor will be able to set you straight.


the sacrament of anointing removed all sin, although you should have been given the opportunity to confess first if you were able, but that was not your fault. If you have doubts about the state of your soul simply go to confession and tell the whole story, the former sins and your concern about your marriage and any thing else, such as receiving communion unworthily. In any case none of this would render your marriage invalid. the graces of the sacrament become available to you as soon as you are absolved and so return to the state of grace.

Hi James,
Yes, that would be an important distinction to make, good catch.

No, my mortal sin was not of the nature which would have otherwise rendered my marriage invalid. We were both free and clear to marry, open to children, and had no impediments.

Sacraments such as baptism, confirmation, marriage and Holy Orders are NOT automatically invalidated by the recepient being in a state of mortal sin, though they do not become fully operative until such time as the person confesses their mortal sin.

Yes, things such as not being open to children at the time of marriage will invalidate it, however that only becomes a mortal sin after one makes the vows which include promises to be open to life etc … I don’t think the OP is talking about mortal sins that happen during or after the ceremony.

You’ll never find the Church repeating the process of confirming or ordinaining someone, for example, just because they happened to be in mortal sin at the time they received the sacrament. Although they may do so for other reasons.

Same goes for marriages - notice that in an annulment process no-one ever gets asked if they were in a state of mortal sin at the time of marriage, because it doesn’t invalidate the sacrament if they are. If it DID invalidate marriages, they’d ask because a heck of a lot more of 'em could be annulled if it did!

Yes, if you were in a state of unconfessed mortal sin and received the sacrament it may have constituted sacrilege - depending upon whether you knew at the time that it was a grave sin to do so.

Father’s given you an answer, and it’s pretty similar to puzzleannie’s:

Don’t beat yourself up. As a kid, I was sure I’d received the sacrament of Confirmation when in a state of mortal sin. When I finally got the courage to go to confession 3 years later, I found out I had not even been close to mortal sin.

I’m trying to wrap my head around this, so bear with me…

Let me preface by saying that I am definitely going to confession soon.

But do I understand you correctly that receiving the anointing of the sick effectively absolved me of all the mortal sins I had been carrying around for the past two years? And in so doing, did the anointing make the graces of the marriage sacrament available to me and erase the sacrilige?

Sorry if I appear dense, just a sojourner trying to find her way…

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