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Anonymous Mia wrote:

Hi, guys —

My husband is in prison for trying to kill me while in a drunken rage. He does not remember it as he was blacked out. We wish to remain together after his release.

  • Does his act invalidate our marriage?

Also, we got married at City Hall but my archdiocese approved the lack of Canonical Form request and I could potentially marry him in the Church.

  • Am I being too naive in my application of forgiveness and Jesus' teachings?

Any input would be greatly appreciated.

  { Does his act of trying to kill me invalidate our marriage and am I being too naive in my application of Jesus' teachings? }

Mike replied:

Dear Mia,

If you were validly and sacramentally married at the time, his act does not invalidate your marriage, but if the Archdiocese approved the lack of Canonical Form request, your marriage probably wasn't valid.

I can't really provide any valuable advice as I am single, not married. It's best if you get pastoral advice from a priest in your area who is faithful to the Church's teachings.

On the face of it, I don't understand why you would want to remain together with him. It doesn't sound very practical to marry someone with domestic abuse and alcohol issues, especially since it appears he has no interest in addressing these issues.

Marriage is a sacred bond, a sacred Covenant with God, and a lifetime commitment. It should not be taken lightly.

I would break off the relationship immediately, and if he tries to come back, tell him you have moved on in finding another single faithful Catholic man, like in your local Catholic parish.

It's best to talk to a faithful priest about this and take his advice.


Paul replied:

Dear Mia,

If this happens when your husband gets drunk, he needs to promise not to drink again. If he's an alcoholic, he needs to get help.

As Mike said, such an attack in itself doesn't invalidate a marriage. I'd be interested as to what kind of permission was worked out with your archdiocese and if a priest or deacon was present at the City Hall.

Getting counseling from a good solid priest certainly wouldn't hurt.



Mia replied:

Hi, guys —

Thank you so much for your answers.

I truly appreciate you taking the time. I will definitely try and ask a priest about the proper course of action. By the way, we did not get married in the Church. I had to submit a lack of canonical form. We should both have one as we are both baptized Catholics, and I wanted to receive my sacraments.

I returned to Catholicism after what happened, as having a near-death experience will show us we are nothing without God. I also believe there was intervention in the way my life was spared. 

Anyway, this is probably beyond the scope of Catholic Apologetics. I have no idea even how to conceptualize this problem. 

I hope you all have a blessed day. It is beautiful outside!

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