What The Catholic Church Teaches About Divorce & Annulments

In this episode of The Catholic Talk Show, the guys discuss what the Catholic Church teaches on Divorce and Annulments.

In this episode, you will learn:
• What does the Bible actually say about Divorce
• Can a Catholic actually get a divorce?
• What is the difference between divorces & annulments?
• Can divorced Catholics receive Holy Communion?
• What reasons allows a person to get an annulment?
• What impact is divorce having on society and the Church?
• and much more

Show Links & Resources:

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6 comments on What The Catholic Church Teaches About Divorce & Annulments

  1. Paul Grimm says:

    I have an inquisition question that has divided my wife and myself. It’s about the communion fast. Why do we even have a communion fast? She points out that the Passover was a feast not a fast and every day at mass we hear “when supper was ended he took the cup” clearly he just ate. My stance is we do it because we are told to from mother church and that’s good enough for me. Thoughts?

    At some point in our marriage she won’t be pregnant (we are one our 5th and have been married 7 years) and we will need an answer.

    1. Rob says:

      Hey guys thanks for the podcast. This topic is a an important one as it effects so many families (my own personally) and so many people misunderstand it within the Church (even many priests that I have spoken with). I recommend the website Mary’s advocate’s for a further understanding on the Church’s teaching about divorce and the annulment process. http://marysadvocates.org/

      Also, regardless of validity or invalidity I hope people can find resources to heal rather than divorce. The vast majority of these relationships can be mended if people are just given another option. This is shown by the success of such programs like Retrouvaille (a weekend for marriages in crisis). I have been using the resource https://marriagehelper.com/ for my marriage. I don’t mean to overstep by promoting other sites but I figured that a podcast about divorce may attract people that need the help.

      Thanks for the show. You guys are both enlightening and entertaining.

  2. Andrea says:

    Hi guys,
    Excellent podcast and you covered it all. Divorce only happened in my family in my generation. I had my parents’ example as a marriage that lasted until death did them part. They were both baptized and at least fourth generation Catholics. They were solid in their faith and that God brought them together. It took God 10 years and my father writing love letters and pouring his heart out for that entire length of time, while he was in the Merchant Marines, before my mother said “I do” and she meant that for a lifetime and beyond.

    Took you long enough to get the answer that the man is dead guys, good one Ryan Scheel. I must be awake I got it right away.

    The role of your parish priest is sometimes not appreciated for its importance for preparation of marriage as many just think of it as pro forma. It certainly helps to include your parish priest when you are thinking divorce. It is getting God’s view on your vows. I know of some people who stayed together after several counseling sessions and that is a beautiful thing.

    Many people throw out their vows when love goes out the window. They don’t try to recapture that love and commitment to each other, they don’t meet with their parish priest, they just move on to someone else. It was interesting to hear such horrible divorce statistics and out of those sad statistics I wonder how many people did not seek counseling.

    Thank you again for this excellent podcast and it is worth repeating.

    God bless us all during this Advent Season.

  3. Lisa Cristo says:

    What happens if a Catholic marries a person that is Lutheran, and that couple gets a Divorce? Does the Catholic person have to get annualment?

  4. J Breaugh says:

    Hi Guys,,
    The podcast attached includes a few questionable statements that may lead to confusion and lead some to approach the Eucharist when they are not properly disposed. You answer Ryan’s statement about a friend who does not have a Decree of Nullity and is frustrated because he can’t date with ” He can date.. he just can’t marry and must remain chaste? (25:24 in the podcast). Does the Catholic Church really teach a married man can date? Without a Decree of Nullity the man is still in a Sacramental Marriage to his civil ex-wife. This statement is not correct.

    The Church does not recognize civil divorce except as a way of protecting assets or children from danger. You also mention incorrectly that raising kids Catholic could make Divorce OK with the church. I can’t find that statement in Canon Law… Canon Law speaks to “separation with the bond remaining” but you left an incorrect impression here as well since it “Always” expects married life to continue when the danger is no longer present…. . ( Canon 1153.1 A spouse who occasions grave danger of soul or body to the other or to the children, or otherwise makes the common life unduly difficult, provides the other spouse with a reason to leave, either by a decree of the local Ordinary or, if there is danger in delay, even on his or her own authority.
    *****Canon 1153.2 In all cases, when the reason for separation ceases, the common conjugal life is to be restored, unless otherwise provided by ecclesiastical authority) The Catechism also does not mention raising the kids Catholic… it speaks of care for the children… as with protecting assets and providing for food, as a reason for civil divorce, not teaching the faith…. the Catechism also does not mention this… 2383 The separation of spouses while maintaining the marriage bond can be legitimate in certain cases provided for by canon law. 176 If civil divorce remains the only possible way of ensuring certain legal rights, the care of the children, or the protection of inheritance, it can be tolerated and does not constitute a moral offense.)

    Father Rich also answered “Yes” when you stated that a divorced person may receive the Eucharist as long as they aren’t remarried. The Catechism states that divorce is a grave offense (no mention of remarriage until later where it “adds to the Gravity ( not creates it…)” The following section also defines an innocent party, further showing that one who files for divorce very likely could be in a state of sin or mortal sin (grave offense is signal of mortal sin). The Catechism is very clear on one being responsible for a sin if they know they should check but choose not to. (1791 This ignorance can often be imputed to personal responsibility. This is the case when a man “takes little trouble to find out what is true and good, or when conscience is by degrees almost blinded through the habit of committing sin.”59 In such cases, the person is culpable for the evil he commits. ) Since the vows one speaks and the Nuptial Blessing include the teaching that marriage is forever and let no man undo what God has joined they can’t say they did not know. If one is abandoned (does not file) by a spouse then they certainly are in proper disposition to receive the Eucharist. A Catholic spouse who files for divorce may be in a state of mortal sin. If a decree of nulity is not granted then that further increases this possibility. Divorce is the Grave Offense, with or without remarriage.

    I hope you will amend the podcast or edit to properly explain what the Catholic Church, the Catechism and Canon Law say on these subjects.

    1. Andrea says:

      You made some good points and arguments that I missed and the first one was obvious. Divorce is in my family and no annulment was sought by either party.

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