Expert Answer Forum

Annulment QUESTION from pat August 10, 2000 I am Catholic. In my early twenties i got married to a Greek Orthodox, in a the church of the same faith without the presence or permission of the Catholic church (ceremony entirely in Greek as well). Today, after a civil divorce, i want the marriage annulled because i want to be able to get married one day in the Catholic church (my first marriage was not a real sacrement in my heart, because it was NOT in MY church).
I was wondering if i have enough grounds on the matter of disparity of cult to obtain an annulment to that marriage.
Thank you.
ANSWER by John-Paul Ignatius, O.L.S.M. on October 17, 2000 Dear Miss Pat:
From what you are describing you were married to a baptized person of the Orthodox faith and was married before a priest of the Orthodox faith.
If that is the case, then your situation would not be a disparity of cult, it would be a mixed marriage.
Disparity of Cult refers to a Catholic marrying a non-baptized person.
In the case of a Catholic marrying an Orthodox in an Orthodox Church and ceremony, the Catholic Church considers the marriage to be valid, but it is illicit as it lacks canonical form that is required for a Catholic to be married.
Thus I would presume that you will have to have other grounds for annulment beside merely marrying a Orthodox Catholic without permission and without proper canonical form.
What you need to do is contact the Marriage Tribunal of your diocese. You can contact them through the Chancery of your diocese. They will be able to guide you into whether you have sufficient grounds to apply for a Nullity.
If sufficient grounds are present, then you can file a petition for Nullity and the Tribunal will try the case to determine definitively whether you marriage can be nullified or not.
From what you are describing I would suspect that you have a case and shouldn't have a problem getting the nullity, but I am not an expert in this and am not the one who makes the decisions.
So you need to contact your diocese to get the best advice and scoop on what you need to do.
God Bless.
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