Bringing you the "Good News" of Jesus Christ and His Church While PROMOTING CATHOLIC Apologetic Support groups loyal to the Holy Father and Church's magisterium
Home About
AskACatholic.com
What's New? Resources The Church Family Life Mass and
Adoration
Ask A Catholic
Knowledge base
AskACatholic Disclaimer
Search the
AskACatholic Database
Donate and
Support our work
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
New Questions
Cool Catholic Videos
About Saints
Disciplines and Practices
Purgatory and Indulgences
About the Holy Mass
About Mary
Searching and Confused
Homosexual Issues
Life and Family
No Salvation Outside the Church
Sacred Scripture
non-Catholic Cults
Justification and Salvation
The Pope and Papacy
The Sacraments
Relationships and Marriage situations
back
Specific people, organizations and events
Doctrine and Teachings
Specific Practices
Church Internals
Church History

Cher Love wrote:

Hi, guys —

I am currently in my second marriage and we are raising our children Catholic. The problem is my first marriage was also with a man who was raised Catholic.

I have recently signed up for RCIA classes but I am not sure I will be able to convert since I have been married before and had children.

We were forced to marry by my grandparents due to the upcoming birth of my first son.

I was 19 and very young. We later dissolved the marriage because we both did not want to be married in the first place.

  • Is it possible for me to convert?

I don't want to attend the upcoming RCIA classes if I will be embarrassed by being told that I can not become Catholic.

Any help or insight would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks so much!

Cher Love

  { If I have been married before and had children, can I still become a Catholic? }

Fr. Jonathan replied:

Hi Cher,

Assuming your first marriage was in the Catholic Church, due to his faith (or maybe his parent's faith), then your first marriage is a presumably valid one.

Since you are now married again, a process would need to happen prior to your coming into the Church. I would think however, in your case, it will be a straightforward process. There are two options and you should talk to your priest about both of them. He will help you get an Annulment of that first marriage.

  1. From what you have said it sounds like you have ample grounds to claim that your marriage is invalid — probably due to what the Church calls simulation. Essentially, you would provide evidence to the Church that you did not intend to enter into a marital covenant as the Church views it, when you got married the first time; rather, you essentially stood up there to relieve the pressure of his parents and the baby.

  2. If you were never baptized and you hope to be baptized in the Catholic Church then you should ask your priest to explore something called the Pauline Privilege with your local Tribunal.

That would be faster than an annulment.

Go speak with your priest and I am sure he will be delighted that you want to enter the Catholic Church. You can begin RCIA while the process is happening.

Fr. Jonathan

Cher replied:

Hello Father,

I think I may have not expressed myself correctly.

My first marriage was not to a Catholic man. My husband that I am married to now is Catholic.

  • My first marriage was a civil ceremony in front of a judge.
  • My second marriage was also in front of a judge.
  • Would your answer still apply?

Cher

Fr. Jonathan replied:

Dear Cher,

I did misunderstand your situation however my answer also applies to your modified circumstance.

Since neither of you were Catholic in your first marriage, neither of you were bound to be married in the Catholic Church. In our law this means your first marriage is presumed valid.

Same two options applied in your instance. Go see a priest. Show him this e-mail if it would be helpful to him.

Good luck,

Fr. Jonathan

Cher replied:

Thank you so much!

The classes start tomorrow night and that is when I meet with Father Cullen.

Again, thanks so much for your help.

God Bless.

Cher

Please report any and all typos or grammatical errors.
Suggestions for this web page and the web site can be sent to Mike Humphrey
© 2012 Panoramic Sites
The Early Church Fathers Church Fathers on the Primacy of Peter. The Early Church Fathers on the Catholic Church and the term Catholic. The Early Church Fathers on the importance of the Roman Catholic Church centered in Rome.