Magazine article U.S. Catholic

Annulments Shouldn't Be One-Size-Fits-All

Magazine article U.S. Catholic

Annulments Shouldn't Be One-Size-Fits-All

Article excerpt

As my marriage of ten years was coming apart, my non-Catholic husband and I sought counseling from a Catholic priest. After several sessions, the priest spoke with me alone and asked why I was not considering divorce. Along with my answer of the "stigma," I expressed my dismay that I was being asked that question by someone wearing a Roman collar. He tried to help by offering an annulment. "With issue?" I asked. Along with the assurance that the last woman he had helped obtain an annulment had five children, he told me what it would cost.

As he spoke, my thoughts revisited women I had watched suffer through horrible marriages, in large part guided by their faith. In particular was the image of Sophie, my grade-school classmate's mother. She walked to 6 o'clock Mass each morning before starting her workday as a checker at the local A&P.

I would see her ending the 9 or 10 hours on her feet as she turned up the walk to her home. Later each night her husband's staggering footprints would cover those of her steady gait, just as his drunkenness nearly blotted out her meager earnings. Her son -- a kind, shy boy -- was always neatly dressed and never lacking for love. Sophie went to an early grave, but was devoted to her family, her faith, her responsibilities, and her choices. She prayed to her God for strength, and I never heard her complain.

The assured patter of the priest pulled me back. He seemed to think I just didn't get it. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.