Were the divorced ever banned from communion?

A friend, 78, insists that divorced Catholics were not allowed to receive the sacraments when she was young

I said they can receive the sacraments even without an annulment. It is when they remarry without an annulment that they cannot receive. If remarried without an annulment, they have to live as brother and sister until the annulment is granted.

She insists that there was a time in Church history that the divorced could not receive the sacraments.

If she’s correct, when was this and when was canon law changed?

Thank you!

I cannot find anything that says there was a Church law that those who were merely divorced (as opposed to divorced *and *remarried) could not receive communion. However, that does not mean that local clergy did not enforce their own rules and preach that the divorced should not receive communion. In the USA from the 19th century into the the mid 20th century it was probably not uncommon for certain clergy and regions to impose such a harsh view on the divorced that even though they weren’t canonically barred from communion they sure felt that way. This is yet another reminder for those of us who are clergy to be careful not to exceed what the Church actually teaches.

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