Marriage after Divorce

Canon Law prohibits clergy from solemnizing the marriage of anyone who has been divorced, except with the consent of the bishop. The guidelines of the Diocese of Washington establish the norm of at least 6 months from the date of the final decree of divorce for remarriage in the Church.

In cases of a marriage where one or both of the parties have been divorced, the officiating priest obtains the following from the couple and sends them to the Bishop of Washington: 1) a written report of the counseling received by the persons seeking remarriage, 2) a completed diocesan marriage questionnaire, 3) a signed copy of the Declaration of Intention, and 4) a copy of the“Divorce Absolute” (not “Divorce Nisi”).

The bishop asks that except in extraordinary circumstances, all requests for permission to remarry be sent to her office no fewer than 30 days prior to the proposed wedding date and that no second marriage shall occur until 6 months following the Courts granting of a “Divorce Absolute.” Third or subsequent marriages require a slightly different process.

Last Published: January 9, 2020 3:21 PM
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