Marriage annulmentgreenspun.com : LUSENET : Catholic : One Thread
I have read many responses concerning the annulment process and I am still a little unclear concerning my situation. I hope you can help.
I was born, baptized, and married in the Lutheran Church. After 6 years of struggles, my ex-wife and I were divorced. I have been legally divorced for 3 years and have found the person who I would like to spend the rest of my life with. She is of the Catholic faith and also divorced. We have attended Catholic services together and it is my wish to join the Catholic faith. I am planning to marry her someday but before that happens I need some questions answered. I am unclear whether she, I, or both of us need to seek an annulment of our previous marriages. If I need to seek an annulment as well, do I seek that from the Catholic church or of the Lutheran church?
It is very important to me that we enter this marriage under the same faith as it would allow us to raise her two children in a consistent and nurturing environment. Where do I need to go from here to ensure that our relationship and marriage are recognized by the Catholic church? And, typically how long does the annulment process take and cost?
Your help would be appreciated!
-- Corey Skog (Skog717@aol.com), November 05, 2002
I commend and congratulate you for deciding to do what is right.
You wrote: "I am unclear whether she, I, or both of us need to seek an annulment of our previous marriages."
Both of you need to receive Decrees of Nullity. Without both, there can be no marriage.
"If I need to seek an annulment as well, do I seek that from the Catholic church or of the Lutheran church?"
From the Catholic Church.
"Where do I need to go from here to ensure that our relationship and marriage are recognized by the Catholic church?"
With your friend, make an appointment with a priest at her parish's rectory. He will discuss the whole situation with you and begin the process.
"And, typically how long does the annulment process take and cost?"
It's probably not right to use the word "typically." The process usually ranges from six to eighteen months, depending on simplicity or complexity and possible appeals. There is no actual "cost," because the Church is a non-profit organization that does not demand fees. Instead, a customary donation will be suggested -- but you can give more or less (even nothing), according to your means. The amount suggested will be far below the Church tribunal's actual expenses. It will vary from place to place, but I am pretty sure that it will be below $500.
Corey, I want to welcome you to the Catholic family, if you are joining the Church for the right reasons -- i.e., because you believe that she is the Church that Jesus founded and that only she has the fullness of the truth and all the seven sacraments that Jesus instituted. It is good that you wish to worship together and raise children in the same faith, but you should not become a Catholic unless you can honestly say that you would become one even if your friend were to change her mind about marrying you.
God bless you.
-- J. F. Gecik (firstname.lastname@example.org), November 05, 2002.