Can a divorced person receive the sacraments?

Yes! Being divorced is not a sin nor is one excommunicated if they are divorced.   However, if a divorced person remarries without having their first marriage annulled, then they are restricted from the sacraments.   If one was validly married and then divorces, the Church views the original marriage as still binding. The divorced person, therefore, is not permitted to remarry, and as long as they live a chaste life, they can receive the sacraments.   If, however, the original marriage was found by a Church Tribunal to not have been valid, then a decree of nullity can be made.   This indicates that the original marriage contract was not valid.   Then the person is free to marry.

Please note: an annullment can not be granted until a person is first divorced in a civil court.

- Deacon George Kozak (6/01)

Return to Questions Main Page