What rules pertain here?

My son-in-law walked out on my daughter and their three very young children. Within 2 months he was living with another catholic woman. After five years my daughters divorce was granted. Now her ex husband and this other woman are planning a civil wedding ceremony. My question is this: They want my three grandchildren (ages 13-11-8) to participate as best men and maid of honor in this civil ceremony. All parties involved were baptized in the catholic church. Understandably in the eyes of God this civil ceremony means nothing but it does send a confusing message to my three grandchildren. Can you give me any specific guidelines and rules that are to be followed when this problem is presented to the catholic parent who is caught up in this situation through no fault of her own.

Thank you


No Catholic can support another Catholic in committing a mortal sin–which is what your son-in-law is doing in marrying outside of the Catholic Church–and without an annulment. The children need to know the nature of what he is doing. They are all in my prayers.

Fr. Vincent Serpa, O.P.

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