Will my cousin's marriage be valid?

Hi,

My cousin ( who has been baptized and confirmed in the Roman Catholic Church) and her fiance (who has been baptized Roman Catholic) plan to get married by a priest of an “independant catholic church”.

Will this be a valid marriage ?
Will this be a valid sacramental marriage ?
Will they excommunicate themselves ?

Would I be correct in expressing my concern that they recieve the full graces of God by getting a valid Roman Catholic Wedding ?

Would I be correct in telling them that to continue this course of action that they are, in fact, walking away from their Catholic Faith ?

thanks

todd

Since both are Catholics, your cousin and her fiancé are bound by canon law to marry within the Church. Code of Canon Law (CIC) establishes the form of the celebration of marriage which generally “must be observed if at least one of the parties contracting marriage was baptized in the Catholic Church or received into it and has not defected from it by a formal act” (CIC 1117). Marrying in an “independent catholic church” will not satisfy this obligation and the resulting “marriage” will be considered invalid.

Although they will not incur excommunication for this, a marital relationship outside a valid marriage is grave matter and they should not receive the Eucharist until the matter is rectified. You would do well to express your concerns and strongly encourage them to marry validly within the Church.

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