Annulments and Convalidation


POLICY 418 (found in Diocesan Handbook)

Petition Form

Resolution of Previous Marriage Cases

Every effort should be made to assist persons in situating the process of the annulment or declaration of freedom to marry in the context of their ongoing conversion to the Catholic Faith.

Persons who have broken marriages in their backgrounds may be enrolled and admitted as catechumens and candidates, but they should have already submitted their petitions to the Tribunal before taking these steps.

These persons may not participate in the Rite of Election unless their previous marital status has been resolved by the Tribunal.

Guidelines for Implementation:

  1. Cases of persons in need of rectifying their marital situation and hoping to be initiated at the Easter Vigil should be submitted to the Tribunal in the early fall preceding the Vigil.
  2. The Tribunal will attempt to indicate by Ash Wednesday if the case is headed toward a favorable completion before the Easter Celebration. This is not a guarantee since some cases experience unusual difficulties.
  3. Persons should not be led along with false or unreasonable expectations.

Once there is an affirmative decision (an annulment has been granted), if a marriage needs to be convalidated, the convalidation should be accomplished at a time prior to (and distinct from) the reception of the sacraments of Healing or reception into full Communion.



A convalidation should be accomplished at a time prior to the reception of the Sacraments of Healing or reception into full Communion.