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This room is for supportive and informative discussion about divorce and/or the annulment process. All posters must have been previously divorced or annulled.

Saint Eugene De Mazenod is patron of dysfunctional families & Saint Fabiola obtained a divorce from her first husband prior to devoting her life to charitable works.
Learn More: Saint Eugene De Mazenod and Saint Fabiola

I recently switched from my long standing (20+ yrs) Parish to another due to my divorce. Has anyone else done this?
My story: I converted to Catholicism after marriage and we joined a local Parish together. He was a Catholic already but had not practiced much of his adult life until we deiced to marry. I had been Methodist and was quite involved in my church. I chose to take RCIA and with my pastors blessing joined the Catholic faith. His parents moved back to the area and they resumed attending the same church as they had been members years before. We were both active in the church, raised our children in the faith and taught Confirmation classes. After our divorce it was kind of an unspoken rule, since we alternated weekends with the children, whoever had the kids attended the "main" Mass at 10 am and the other person attended another time. Of course, there were still those occasions where we eneded up at the same service which was always uncomforable. At least, for me. He had chosen to end our marriage and we did obtain an annullment but it was quite awkward for me to celebrate the Mass with the person who disregarded so much of the faith he professed to believe in and had taught me about. This aside, I kept it up. I began noticing looks from certain members of the parish, was not greeted by as many as previous except for those very few (like the Father, Religious Ed. Coordinator and people who has guided the annullment and aided during our separation) and thought that perhaps it was just my imagination. THen I was approached in the parking lot by a friend of my-husbands' parents. The older woman said she had heard of the divorce and asked what I had done. I was so stunned. I mumbled something after a couple of minutes like "I fought for my marriage" and "perhaps you asked that of the wrong person". Not terribly charitable to my former spouse, I admit. I got into the car where my kids found me crying after finsihing up their religious ed. classes. I have always been open and honest with my teens and when they wanted to know what was wrong I told them I had been feeling very uncomfortable in church as if I was no longer accepted and to my surprise they shared some of their own stories of stares, inappropriate comments and even outright prejudice by church members. Still, we loved our church and our faith and we were there for God and so we continued at the parish. My daughter went on to college and began attending the church there and immediate told me how freeing and wonderful she felt when she went there. My son and I attended another local Catholic Church on my Sunday's with him during the summer but when religious ed. was in we were back at our home parish. I noticed that I was having to leave during the services more and more feeling sick to my stomach and anxious. As if the walls were closing in. I began watching Mass online when I didn't have my kids. My ex started attending the main Mass regardless of whether or not he had the children and then his new girlfriend and her daughter joined him (I like them, but still awkward). FInally after four and a half years after the divorce I decided my loyalty to the parish was effecting my religous life negatively so I tried another Parish in a different town. From the first day I was welcomed with open arms and accepted. I found a couple of others who had experienced the same issues with prejudice after divorce from my former parish. Still I gave it some time, but within a couple of months I joined them as my new home church. I am so glad I did. I love going to church again and look forward to each Sunday. It's harder on my schedule, being in another town, but so worth it.
I wonder just how many others have had this sort of experience?
Mar 27th 2014 new
I changed parishes also. Luckily for us, my daughter attends school at the other parish now so that is our parish home. Thanks be to God.

As far as what the other people think, say or feel.... one thing I've learned to help me cope was, "Forgive them for they know not what they do."

Freedom!! Go girl!! Enjoy your new parish!! God is there too!!!
Mar 29th 2014 new
(quote) Lisa-1056214 said: I recently switched from my long standing (20+ yrs) Parish to another due to my divorce. Has anyone else done this?
My story: I converted to Catholicism after marriage and we joined a local Parish together. He was a Catholic already but had not practiced much of his adult life until we deiced to marry. I had been Methodist and was quite involved in my church. I chose to take RCIA and with my pastors blessing joined the Catholic faith. His parents moved back to the area and they resumed attending the same church as they had been members years before. We were both active in the church, raised our children in the faith and taught Confirmation classes. After our divorce it was kind of an unspoken rule, since we alternated weekends with the children, whoever had the kids attended the "main" Mass at 10 am and the other person attended another time. Of course, there were still those occasions where we eneded up at the same service which was always uncomforable. At least, for me. He had chosen to end our marriage and we did obtain an annullment but it was quite awkward for me to celebrate the Mass with the person who disregarded so much of the faith he professed to believe in and had taught me about. This aside, I kept it up. I began noticing looks from certain members of the parish, was not greeted by as many as previous except for those very few (like the Father, Religious Ed. Coordinator and people who has guided the annullment and aided during our separation) and thought that perhaps it was just my imagination. THen I was approached in the parking lot by a friend of my-husbands' parents. The older woman said she had heard of the divorce and asked what I had done. I was so stunned. I mumbled something after a couple of minutes like "I fought for my marriage" and "perhaps you asked that of the wrong person". Not terribly charitable to my former spouse, I admit. I got into the car where my kids found me crying after finsihing up their religious ed. classes. I have always been open and honest with my teens and when they wanted to know what was wrong I told them I had been feeling very uncomfortable in church as if I was no longer accepted and to my surprise they shared some of their own stories of stares, inappropriate comments and even outright prejudice by church members. Still, we loved our church and our faith and we were there for God and so we continued at the parish. My daughter went on to college and began attending the church there and immediate told me how freeing and wonderful she felt when she went there. My son and I attended another local Catholic Church on my Sunday's with him during the summer but when religious ed. was in we were back at our home parish. I noticed that I was having to leave during the services more and more feeling sick to my stomach and anxious. As if the walls were closing in. I began watching Mass online when I didn't have my kids. My ex started attending the main Mass regardless of whether or not he had the children and then his new girlfriend and her daughter joined him (I like them, but still awkward). FInally after four and a half years after the divorce I decided my loyalty to the parish was effecting my religous life negatively so I tried another Parish in a different town. From the first day I was welcomed with open arms and accepted. I found a couple of others who had experienced the same issues with prejudice after divorce from my former parish. Still I gave it some time, but within a couple of months I joined them as my new home church. I am so glad I did. I love going to church again and look forward to each Sunday. It's harder on my schedule, being in another town, but so worth it.
I wonder just how many others have had this sort of experience?
I changed parishes after awhile trying to run from the pain. He is not there; I was just hoping to get away from the memories. Now though I think I might go back. I feel like I have grown away from the negative feelings and miss the great sermons and wonderful Parish. I don't think it will bother me to run into some of the old friends but who knows? I definitely understand and felt the same for awhile even though he wasn't there.
Mar 29th 2014 new
Lisa, Oh how I can identify with you. There are many of us (women and men) in the same boat (or shall I say same pew.) There has to be a parish named after Our Lady of the Holy Misfits or Our Lady of those being stalked by former spouses. I am determined to find it and register as a member. It is so hard when your parish family treats you badly. No one knows what any of us have been through (and even on CM I know we all have our own individual stories) and how badly we need the support of others. I finally left the parish.we attended as a family due to being stalked by my former husband..... he even stalks me when he is with his wife! It is so hard when we have memories of holidays, and first sacraments, and time.spent in worship. Best of luck and prayers for you as you find a place to worship.
Mar 29th 2014 new
I had to leave my parish after the divorce as well. It was a shame because my family had been going there since the 1890's. Oh well.

Religious people make me crazy. They gossip. They accuse. They get into other peoples' business. You should have given that bitty in the the parking lot both barrels. How DARE she say that?? Religious people can be such awful rotters. For every saint, there are 15 or 20 sanctimonious busy bodies. Our old pastor used to throw up his hands and yell "God protect me from 'good church women"!!" They drove Jesus to distraction in the gospels. They're with us still. Heaven help us from acting in this way.
Mar 29th 2014 new
(quote) David-364112 said:  Our old pastor used to throw up his hands and yell "God protect me from 'good church women"!!" They drove Jesus to distraction in the gospels. They're with us still. Heaven help us from acting in this way.
Bow Bow Bow Bow Bow Bow Bow Bow Bow Bow :bow: :bow:


omigoodness, yes!! Did you see the part in the movie, "The Help," with the haughty church women?? Oh man.

Blessings to us all who continue to be obedient to God's Call for community even when our fellow members judge us like they judged Mary for being pregnant without, '...having known Joseph...."
Mar 30th 2014 new
theheart

Hang in there Lisa ! Don't give up 'The Faith' EWTN Radio's Patrick Madrid, Jimmy Akin and Fr. Pacwa have some good show on these topics.

My daughter, who was at the Parish School, and I decided to stay put and stand firm against what Fr. Pacwa calls 'Lukewarm Catholics' and I enjoy confronting some Masonic Catholics who have no defense since it is very
ex-communicable and anti-Catholic. Embarrassment & can be researched on the Catholic Encyclopedia regarding 'Scandal' especially when 3rd party gossips strike up hostile chit-chat ! Take the time to read the history surrounding Fatima and what was occurring in Portugal at that time.
Mar 30th 2014 new
God Bless Father Gerard Joubert! After I was divorced, Father Joubert (jokingly?) informed me that there was no space for divorced folks in his parish. He told me to go to such-and-such another parish, because they had a noteworthy singles group. I did make some friends in the singles group, but the big thing that captured my attention and responsibility was being appointed to the Finance Council of my new parish. To make a long story short, I was there for twenty years, even after my ex moved away from Houston. So I never had to even imagine how comfortable or uncomfortable it might be, or would actually be, to be a member of the same parish as my ex-husand. Praise the Lord for Father Joubert, O.D.
Jun 25th 2014 new
I switched parishes because it was too painful to answer that question, "Where is your family?"
The irony is that we were asked the year prior to participate as marriage mentors!

It was a good thing I switched parishes; I found new routines and new opportunities by doing so.
It was also painful for people who knew us at the old parish, so once the news was out, I could move on to another parish.
The new parish has been very helpful and it was from the new parish I petitioned the Church for an annulment.
I got involved in the parish activities like bible study and special events.
The pastor welcomes guest priests and religious with a variety of missions to understand the faith.

Did I have to? No, but I found it a positive and healing experience starting anew.

Leo


Jun 26th 2014 new

I actually got a fresh start while I was still married....since she stopped going to Mass with me at our old parish.

That was nine or ten years ago.....and I have been a member of this Church (St Thomas) ever since. It turned out to be a wise choice because I really love this Church~

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