Faith/Spirituality Forum: Annullment, Sponsors and RCIA
Annullment, Sponsors and RCIA QUESTION from Cristine on July 25, 2002 I have been attending Mass with my boyfriend since November and have enjoyed the personal experience from the very beginning. I am to begin attending RCIA in September. I was baptised Nazerene as an infant. I have already been told that I need to get a decree of nullity for divorcing after my first, and only, marriage.
I'm not planning on marrying my boyfriend at this time, but he would like to be my sponsor for RCIA. He was married, and subsequently divorced, to a Jewish gal. Since he was married to a non-baptised woman in a civil service (he was a baptised Catholic and did not receive permission from the church to marry), does he still require an annullment to be my sponsor for RCIA? I was told my sponsor has to be in good standing and able to participate in the sacrements.
ANSWER by John-Paul Ignatius, OLSM on July 27, 2002 Dear Cristine:
Thanks for your question. Although you are not planning marriage at this time, I would advise you to go ahead and begin the annulment process for yourself to get that out of the way.
If the Church approves your annulment it will take up to one year or more. Once approved, you will then have free status to marry should you ever want to.
It is best to get is over with now than to wait until you want to get married and have the problem of delaying when you want to be married because of the length of time it takes to get an annulment.
As for your boyfriend, if he is divorced and NOT remarried, then he can be in good standing in the Church if he has been to confession of course.
Divorce is a single act that can be forgiven. Once it is forgiven a person can particulate as a good Catholic in the Sacraments. Re-marriage is the problem because when one is re-married WITHOUT first getting an annulment of the first marriage they are living in a state of sin continually. It is not a single act, like divorce, but a continuing condition.
So, if your sponsor is divorced but NOT remarried he can enjoy full statis as a Catholic, participate in the Sacraments, be in good standing, and be your sponsor.
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