Traditional Catholics/divorce


if my wife of 4 years has committed 3 counts of adultery, and I divorce her, is it a mortal sin? I am not remarrying but just divorcing. I am not catholic but read the early church fathers and read a lot of catholic material.

It is good that, even thought not being a Catholic, you nevertheless seem to realize that the same rules objectively apply to all, as we all live in the same universe whether we intend to or not.  With only this to go on, as it stands your only valid moral options are to live on your own or to return to your wife (such as she is...)
A divorce may "end" the marriage as far as the Law of the Land goes (and sometimes that indeed might be necessary for things such a settlement of property, etc.), but of course in the eyes of God you are still married to that one woman.  She is not merely a "wife of 4 years" but a wife, period.  Before God the two of you can only be "separated" or together.  But assuming the "divorce" is done only for these other sorts of purposes and works no iniquity (e. g. deprive her or any children of basic life needs, or becomes opportunity/temptation for either her or you (down the road) to pursue the fiction of a "marriage" to someone else), there need not be any actual sin to it at all.  Just make sure that it:
1) Is truly necessary, I. e. whatever property settlement and like values to get out of it would not be otherwise obtainable,
2) That it works no ill-effects on either of you in terms of surviving in this world or a source of distress or despair for the children or other family members,
3) Does not turn into an excuse for either of you to pursue other partners.
For example, perhaps a simple "separation" might be sufficient for your needs, and if so then that less severe of possible interventions is certainly the way to go, unless more really is needed.  Or if there are children involved, it is not enough that they get shuttled between parents; they really should have an intact family, at least while they are still small and growing up.  And just as you have no plans of seducing another woman, you are not attempting to "free" her to seduce other men either, for that is not fair to the men who potentially would be involved with she who remains your wife before God.
But yes, providing these conditions are met, then there would be no sin (that I can see) in the divorce, but don't hesitate to get a second opinion on this if you're still not sure.

Traditional Catholics

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Griff Ruby


I focus on the "why" and "how" questions of the Faith and one`s need for the Church to overcome sin, live the life God wishes us, and to become what God wants us to be. My areas of expertise are particularly in the areas of practical morality, theology, Scripture, history, and personal problems and dilemmas that people face. It is important to bring a sense of proportion to the recent and current ecclesiastical situation that makes necessary having to add the clarification "traditional" to "Catholic," for a "traditional Catholic" today is simply what anyone would have called a "Catholic" only 60 years ago, and so on clear back to the beginning. I seek to provide insight and information such that you are then able to see for yourself the answer to your questions. Homework problems and trivia questions may be refused, and I am not interested in using Allexperts as a debating forum.


Years of extensive research, thought, and prayerful meditation on many of the issues that trouble Catholics today, taught catechetical classes to teenagers and adults, answered many questions already as Allexperts volunteer in Catholics category.

Legion of Mary, Knights of Columbus

Book: The Resurrection of the Roman Catholic Church Articles published in: DailyCatholic, The Four Marks

I have an Engineering degree from University of California, Santa Barbara, however this obviously has extremely little bearing on my expertise here other than to document the level of my education in general.

Past/Present Clients
I have been an Allexperts volunteer in the category of Catholics since at least as far back as 2001, having answered over 800 questions from over 600 different people.

©2016 All rights reserved.