Tribunal Unfair


I have recieved an annulment but the Tribunal has placed a vetitum because of past issues. I went to a counseler they suggested but all she would talk about is the past. The past is the past. The issues no longer exist but no one will believe me. I have begun looking into other Christian religions. I don’t want to leave the Church but the Tribunal is driving me away. Is there any way I can appeal this stupid decision by the Tribunal. They won’t even discuss it with me.


Why don’t you see if a counselor will write a letter to the Tribunal explaining that you have been to counseling for XYZ issue?


She’s just doing what the Tribunal asked her to do.


What harm can there be in just sucking it up and discussing the past with this counselor? Maybe you think it’s irrelevant right now, but maybe God thinks otherwise and this is where He wants you to be right now.

Picking another church is not the answer. You will lose far too much just to avoid tackling your past.

Give this counselor a fair chance and if after awhile you feel it’s not working, request to see another counselor.

Be patient.


I am confused by your response. Does that mean your counselor will not write you anything to the Tribunal? Perhaps she does not think these issues are done and over. Do you need to see her a few more times to convinces her and be done with it?

Did you ask the Tribunal to set forth criteria that frees you after such and such has taken place? Perhaps you need clarifiaction from the Tribunal as to the exact steps you need to take in order to be cleared.


I have already tackled my past. What I am having to do now is go through it all again. That is not fair to my family. It is not me I am concerned about.


So is it fair to say then that you are not willing to talk further to a counselor and get cleared by her/him?


See, the Tribunal wants to ensure that XYZ situation does not exist should you decide to get married again. They want to make sure you enter into a valid marriage if you decide to get married in the Catholic church.

If the past situation does not exists any longer, then I am not sure I see any harm in talking to a counselor just to get cleared. If it is done and over and you are recovered from whatever, then it should not be all that painful to discus…though I guess I have no idea.


Unfortunately the tribunal thinks that you should talk to a counselor. If you’ve dealt with it, I don’t think you would be so reluctant to talk to them about it… no offense but maybe you could stand to talk about it a little more.

Look… bottom line… you got the decree of nullity but according to them you can’t marry unless you go to the therapist… my dh had the same mandate… he went for 3 to 4 times and a month later he was cleared to get married… it’s not as bad as you think!


The issues were resolved through counseling with my paster years ago. However, he has since passed away. Since he was not a “professional” counselor, the Tribunal wanted me to get new counseling. This is ok but my current wife does not need this. It isn’t fair to her to stir up things that have been delt with already. I do plan to continue the counseling, but I jsut think it is unfair to have to resolve issues that do not exist anymore.


You might be surprised how much your past affects your present and even your future, and you might be underestimating just how far back in your past you need to go to get the healing you need to move forward. We can understand many things on an intellectual level and think we have moved past them. However, we can be hit with circumstances that will trigger some of those deep past emotions and let them come to the surface. If we haven’t fully examined those past experiences, haven’t fully taken ownership of them, it can be next to impossible to control those surfacing emotions. For a lot of people, it is just too much to face the truth about the past because it is so painful and also might shake up all that we believe to be true about ourselves. The truth is though, that you haven’t gotten over it if you can’t look back on it and take that risk. If you are willing to leave the Church because you don’t want to talk to a counselor about your past, that should serve as a big red flag that there are issues you need to work on. I really do recommend talking to this counselor, so you do not find yourself one day reliving your past mistakes. Wouldn’t it be a shame to come so far, only to have to go back again?


Could this be a matter for a canon lawyer?


…and just adding here…I’ve had counseling from my priest and I’ve had counseling from a therapist and there is a big difference in the depth that you go to with a counselor. With a priest it is more a practical type counseling, where you understand where you should be headed. With a therapist, you do go further back into your past.


The questions the counselor asks are the same the priest asked. Again, although I will always feel the Tribunal is WRONG, I am going to continue to go to counseling, but only to satisfy them. I am completely satisfied that I no longer have these issues. I am happier right now then I have ever been in my life. My current marriage is great. My wife is wonderful. My life is wonderful.


Pardon me, but that sounds a lot like an ultimatum. “Do it the way I want it done, or I’m outa here.”

Nobody’s "driving you away. " Only you can make that drive.


That comment was just rude and unfeeling. You should have read on before you picked that quote to comment on.


Hang in there. You are happy now, as you stated. So do the things the Tribunal has required and figure out what they need to be satisfied. Most of the battle sounds as if it is won…which is healing from the past.

You say you are healed, then counseling should be a breeze. Nothing new to reveal - just lip service.

Prayers for you .


Thanks, you are absolutely right. It is just discouraging to have to wait 3 1/2 years for the annulment and then have to wait longer. I feel like a dog jumping through hoops but getting no reward for it.


Don’t fear… it’s almost over… just take the steps you need to and get it done…


That is a long time indeed - but you will be rewarded when this is done with grace and blessings in abundance.

Your marriage will also be strengthened by this - watch and see.
You are doing the right thing - good for you!
May God grant you peace in this.

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