Marriage After Divorce
The Church of England teaches that marriage is for life. It also recognizes that some marriages sadly do fail and, if this should happen, it seeks to be available for all involved. The Church accepts that, in exceptional circumstances, a divorced person may marry again in church during the lifetime of a former spouse.
The Vicar will want to talk to you frankly about the past, your hopes for the future and your understanding of marriage. You and your intended spouse should therefore be prepared to consider some questions. You are advised to reflect beforehand on the issues they raise, and should be prepared to answer them honestly.
- What does marriage mean to you?
- What have you learned from your previous marriage?
- Has there been healing of past hurts?
- If you have children, how are they being looked after?
- What do others think of your marriage plans?
- When did your new relationship begin?
- Have either of you been divorced more than once?
- Are you wanting to grow in the Christian faith?
You will also need to bring with you written legal proof that any divorce decree is absolute. (A decree nisi will not be sufficient).
The Vicar may ask for more than one confidential interview with you, and may feel the need to consult with the Bishop's office before deciding whether a Church wedding can be offered.
If all is well, you will be invited to take part - possibly with other couples - in a course of marriage preparation.
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