Without an annulment, is it OK to date another Partner as long as we are chaste?

Full Question

My husband and I married in the Catholic Church, but now I am separated from my husband and in the process of divorce and annulment. Priests have told me that I can date and still receive the sacraments if the relationships are pure and entered into prayerfully. Is this correct?


No. Currently you are not even legally divorced, much less have you received a decree of nullity from the Church. Until the latter happens, you must presume that you are a married woman and may not date anyone. Once you are legally divorced, you will no longer be married in the eyes of the state, but you will be married in the eyes of the Church unless and until you receive an annulment—and there is never any guarantee that an annulment will be granted. If you maintain a life of chastity appropriate to your state as a married woman legally separated from her husband (the Church considers civil divorce the equivalent of a legal separation), and otherwise remain in a state of grace, you may receive the sacraments. Once an annulment is granted, then you will be free to date.

Answered by: Michelle Arnold


  1. Patrick Gannon Reply

    Or you could leave the Church and stop letting a bunch of celibate men in robes tell you how to live your life!

    1. Darran Reply

      It would be just as sinful outside the Church as it would be inside. Leaving wouldn’t change the fact that one of those celibate men in robes happens to be the Son of God.

      1. Patrick Gannon Reply

        So were fallen angels.
        “The Nephilim were on the earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of man and they bore children to them. These were the mighty men who were of old, the men of renown. The first mention of “sons of God” in the Hebrew Bible occurs at Genesis 6:1-4.

        1. Jacob Grennon Reply

          Tell me, exactly, who the Neplilim are.

          But you can’t. No one can.

          1. Patrick Gannon

            True, but the bible calls them “sons of God,” and whoever they are, they don’t sound like very savory characters. Sending “sons of God” to earth to rape human women is in line with what one would expect of Bible God though..

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