Advent Confessions and Christmas Mass Schedule

 

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Late Advent Confessions before Christmas
Assumption Parish

  • Saturday, December 16th 2:00 PM to 3:45 PM
    Confessions with Bishop Conlon and Fr. Noesen
  • Tuesday, December 19th ~ 5:45 PM until 6:30 PM Mass
  • Saturday, December 23rd ~ 3:00 PM until 3:45 PM 

Late Advent Confessions before Christmas
Immaculate Conception Parish
  

  • Saturday, December 23rd following the 5:45 PM Mass until all are heard.

 *These will be the last scheduled Confessions before Christmas.
Confessions resume Saturday, January 6th at both parishes.
If you need to receive the Sacrament of Penance before then, call Father Noesen.


 

 *Fourth Sunday of Advent ~ December 23rd and 24th at the Regular times.

This is a Holy Day of Obligation.
Catholics are bound to attend Mass on Sunday as well as on Christmas Eve or Day.


 

 Christmas Eve and Day Mass

Sunday, December 24th ~ Christmas Eve ~ Vigil Masses of Christmas: 

3:00 PM  Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Parish                                   

6:00 PM  Immaculate Conception Parish (Blessing of Christmas Crib)              

9:00 PM  Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Parish (Blessing of Christmas Crib)

 

Monday,  December 25th ~ The Solemnity of Christmas

7:30 AM   Christmas at Dawn / Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Parish

9:30 AM   Christmas Mass / Immaculate Conception Parish

11:15 AM Christmas Mass/ Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Parish


 

New Year's Day Mass
Monday, January 1st ~ 2018: Solemnity of Mary, the Mother of God ~ New Year’s Day

This is a Holy Day of Obligation.

10:00 AM Monday, January 1st at Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Parish


 The Christmas Season extends from Christmas through the Baptism of the Lord.
~ December 25th through January 8th.
See the bulletin for weekday Mass.


Watch the 2017 Coal City Community Christmas Cantata

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Painted Church Ceiling Tiles For Sale

We have a limited number of hand painted metal ceiling tiles by parishioner Judith Kaluzny that were reclaimed from our church. Suitable for indoor/outdoor use. $75 obo. All proceeds benefit the Campaign Building Fund. Contact Ruth Dillon at 815 341-9592.

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Go Fund Me Page Set Up for Assumption Building Campaign

We are humbly seeking your prayerful consideration and participation in the Assumption Church fundraising campaign.   We will remember your generosity in our prayers and at masses.   May God bless you, and keep you and yours safe.

Coal City Catholic Church Campaign Go Fund Me Page

Assumption Building Fund Upcoming Events

Church Relic Sales “Own a Piece of History”:

                Memorial Bricks from Original Church - $50 ea.  Contact Teri Boylan (815) 326-0254

                Stained Glass Memory Lockets - $35 ea.  Contact Ruth Dillon  (815) 341-9592

                Stained Glass Cross in My Pocket - $25 ea.  Contact Ruth Dillon (815) 341-9592

                Ceiling Tiles – Contact Ruth Dillon (815) 341-9592


 

3rd Annual Trivia Night:

                January 6, 2018  Doors Open 6pm  Trivia Starts 7pm

                Table of 8 contestants:  $200, Round Sponsorship $100, Auction and Raffles

                Contact Drew Benson  (815) 791-6148 to enroll and volunteer to help at this event


 

Annual Night at the Races:

                April 28, 2018

This annual event is an important fundraiser for our parish.  Please plan to attend and join your family and friends in a night of horse races, silent and live auctions, and raffles.  The committee is in need of parishioner volunteers to be part of the planning committee to ensure a successful event.  Please contact Cindi Grove (815) 735-1432 or Teri Boylan (815) 326-0254


 

The Assumption Parish Stewardship Committee meets on the first Wednesday of every month at 7pm in the Madonna Room.  We welcome new members and pray that you will join us in this important mission of raising funds for our Building Campaign.

RCIA...a Journey in Faith

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Thinking about becoming Catholic?

The Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults has begun and there is still time to join us! The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) is a process for bringing into the Catholic Church both those who have never been baptized (Catechumens) and those who were baptized in a non-Catholic Church (Candidates for Full Communion). RCIA is also the best way for adult Catholics who have never received the Sacrament of Confirmation to prepare for that final Sacrament of Initiation.

Each year in October, Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Parish and Immaculate Conception Parish begins a new class of RCIA. We invite those who would  like to join the Catholic Church or who is at least curious to understand the teachings and customs of Catholic Christianity. For those who have never been baptized, this process will culminate in Baptism at the Great Vigil of Easter in the spring. Those who are already baptized will be received into full communion with the Catholic Church by a profession of faith at the same Vigil. Finally, the newly baptized adults and those who make their profession of faith will all be confirmed and share in the Holy Eucharist for the first time at the Easter Vigil. 

While classroom work is a part of the process, RCIA is more than a class; it is a gradual introduction to the customs, beliefs, practices, prayers, and devotions of Catholicism. Those who participate will be guided by Deacon Dunn and others who assist him to understand the richness of Catholic worship and teaching as a preparation for making a profession of faith at Easter: "I believe and profess all that the holy Catholic Church believes, teaches, and proclaims to be revealed by God."

Call Deacon Dunn at the Parish Office to inquire about the R.C.I.A.

Custom designed souvenir ceiling tiles from the old Assumption church

Custom designed souvenir ceiling tiles from the old Assumption church are now available for $75 each. There are a limited number remaining. These tiles may be ordered by contacting Teri Boylan at 815 326-0254.

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St. Vincent Meals at Assumption Church Through December

We are excited to announce that the St. Vincent Monday night meals will be served out of Assumption of the BVM starting October 2nd and going until end of December. If you would like to donate funds to our St. Vincent table, please make check out to Assumption Church and put St. Vincent’s table in memo line. The meals will be carry out only until November 20. It is customary for the home church to furnish the desserts for the meals along with the cooking of the main meal. If anyone would like to donate desserts or volunteer your time, please call Cathy Milne at 815-518-2000.

Help for Hope is a 501C3 nonprofit organization. We are all volunteers at Help for Hope, no one gets paid. 100% of the money donated goes to helping people. Help for Hope provides basic life necessities for those in need. Here is a list of what we provide:

  •  St. Vincent Monday Night Meals – provide financial aid and food co-ordinate volunteers
  •  Assumption Food Pantry – distribute food
  •  Provide personal hygiene products
  •  Provide baby products
  •  Provide cleaning supplies
  •  Provide rent and utility assistant
  •  Back to School Expo at High School every August
  •  Thanksgiving dinner distribution the Monday before Thanksgiving
  •  Adopt families at Christmas and provide Christmas gifts

We have moved to our new location at 100 South Baima Street (the old School District Administration Office). We will be open Monday thru Friday 8:30 to Noon. We Care will come in on Tuesdays and the Salvation Army will come in on Wednesday. God Bless.

Help for Hope
100 South Baima Street ● Coal City, IL
60416 ● (815) 518-2000

January 6 - Trivia Night
Parish Events Requiring Berst Hall

Funerals and Luncheons provided by the Marthas,and other Parish Events requiring Berst hall ~

As we embark on a 9-month renovation of our 1889 church building, the church will be closed and we now have to move over to Berst Hall and the Religious Education Building for Sunday Mass, daily Mass and other worship services. Because of this necessary transition, everything and everyone will have to adjust to the temporary inconvenience this may cause. I ask for your patience and cooperation as we all go through this historic renovation. A few policies are in place regarding Berst hall and its availability during this 9-month period.

1) The celebration of the Saturday evening and Sunday masses is our main priority. Everything else is secondary. Social events and other parish functions will be allowed if parish policy is carefully observed by every group that uses the hall. During this time of transition and accommodation, the pastor's specific permission for the use of the building is necessary to maintain good order.

2) We will try and accommodate gatherings such as social gatherings, scouts, fundraisers, funeral luncheons, etc.. This will depend, however, on the cooperation of various groups and organization group. The Hall will have to be cleaned, chairs taken-down and re-set afterward. Everything must be kept in order for the celebration of Sunday Mass.

3) Funerals and Weddings will take place at the neighboring Catholic Parishes or funeral homes. Neighboring pastors and funeral directors have graciously offered their places as we go through this necessary transition period. The decisions regarding the parishes or places/manner for funerals will be decided by Father Noesen, taking into consideration the wishes of the families involved and the availability of churches, etc.

4) If funeral luncheons are going to be possible, we MUST have volunteers sign up and dedicate themselves to the set-up, take-down, and cleaning of Berst Hall. If we do not have enough volunteers, the Marthas will not be able to offer luncheons during this 9-month period.

Please consider becoming a volunteer to help the Marthas continue their ministry during the time that we are in Berst Hall for Mass. Call Trisha at the parish center office if you want to volunteer. All volunteers will have to be in place before any luncheon will be scheduled.

Sincerely,

Father Noesen


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Make Our Parish Your Spiritual Home!

Make Our Parish Your Spiritual Home!
Welcome New Parishioners ~
Register Today

Many Catholics attend our parishes for Mass and consider it their “home parish” without formally registering as a parishioner. Why not take the opportunity to become “one of the family?” Simply fill out the form below and return it to the Parish Office through the mail, drop it off, or return it through the Sunday Offering. Someone from the parish office will contact you to complete your registration. You may also call or stop in at the parish office to register:

Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
195 South Kankakee Street
Coal City IL 60416
(815) 634-4171
Click HERE to register
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Immaculate Conception Braidwood
110 South School Street
Braidwood IL 60408
(815) 458-2125
Click HERE to register

If you would like to visit with Father Noesen or one of the Deacons and help you familiarize yourself with the Catholic Faith, or if you are sick and cannot attend Mass each Sunday and would like a visit from Father or one of the parish deacons, please call the parish office.

Food Pantries at Assumption Church and Immaculate Conception

Braidwood Food Pantry
Community Care Center Food Pantry Open
Tuesday - 8 AM to Noon
112 S Center Street - Braidwood
630 738-8863 for more information

Assumption Food Pantry
Food Pantry Open
Monday through Friday 8:30 AM to Noon
NEW ADDRESS:
100 S Baima Street - Coal City
815 518-2000 for more information

Mother of the Eucharistic Adoration Chapel

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The Word was made flesh and dwelt among us!

The Mother of the Eucharistic Adoration Chapel is available for Perpetual Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament seven days a week, 24 hours a day! Frequent visits to the chapel are encouraged. Everyone is welcome at any time.

We live in troubling times with many worries and decisions. Who better than Jesus to bring them to? Stop in any time of the day or night in the Adoration Chapel [located in the parish center — “across the street” from the church /enter through the east side entrance.

You can sign-up for ANY 1/2 HOUR or HOUR of the day or night...more adorers are always welcome and needed. Sign-up as an individual, or as a family/group. Commit to a specific weekly hour of adoration, and then, simply make sure someone is there from the family/group to fulfill the commitment. By making a “public” commitment to “be there,” the obligation becomes easier to keep, because others are counting on you.

Jesus is waiting for you… don’t disappoint Him!

We are always in need of more people to make the sacrifice of time and effort, to be with HIM in Eucharistic Adoration.

Diocesan Employment Resource Center (DERC)

Are you familiar with DERC? We are an employment network under the Justice and Peace Office of the Joliet Diocese.

We have a wealth of resources to help both job seekers and employers such as articles to help you with a job hunt, a list of community resources including job ministries, a free job board to post open positions, and many others.

If you are an employer or work in Human Resources you can post open positions to the job board. Please email Christine M. Kieta if you are interested in becoming an employer permitted to use the job board. You may also visit DERC’s website for more information on the ministry.

Follow us on Twitter and search for the Diocesan Employment Resource Center Facebook page and LinkedIn Group to meet fellow job hunters and improve your networking.

Marian and other Catholic Devotions at Assumption Parish

 

Grow in your love and devotion as a good Catholic should…
Marian and other Catholic Devotions at Assumption Parish

 


Pray The Rosary

Each weekday morning and on First Saturdays at 8:00 A.M. the Rosary is prayed in honor of the Blessed Mother. Join us as wepray for one another, for our parish and others through thewonderful intercession of Jesus' Mother and our Mother as well.


 Devotions in Honor of Our Mother of Perpetual Help

Each Wednesday morning following the 8:30 A.M. Mass,Devotions in Honor of Our Mother of Perpetual Help are held inchurch.


 Our Mother of the Eucharist Chapel

Our Mother of the Eucharist Chapel ~ make frequent visits to Jesus truly present in the Blessed Sacrament. The Chapel is available 24-hours a day, 7 days a week. The door is open from 5 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily. After hours, you will need to obtain a "key card" from the Parish Office.

Jesus is waiting for you...Don't disappoint Him!

For more information about our beautiful Chapel, or to sign up for a specific hour of adoration contact Father Noesen.


 Saint Peregrine Novena and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament

Join us each First Tuesday of the month for 6:30 P.M. Mass followed by Exposition and Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament and devotions to our Lord through his servant, Saint Peregrine. Saint Peregrine is the patron saint of those who suffer with cancer or any terminal illness or serious condition. He is considered a wonder worker with the help of God's grace. Join us to pray for the sick and receive an individual blessing with the relic of the Saint.


Mother of Perpetual Help Devotions

A NOVENA TO OUR LADY 
OF PERPETUAL HELP

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 Jubilee Year Offers Celebrations for Devotees of Our Mother of Perpetual Help

 

On June 27, 2016, Redemptorists worldwide will celebrate the 150th Anniversary of Pope Pius IX entrusting the Icon of Our Mother of Perpetual Help to the Redemptorists, with the mission to “make her known” throughout the world. This year we’re marking the 150th Anniversary of Pope Pius’ entrusting of the Icon of Our Mother of Perpetual Help to the Redemptorists.

In this novena to Our Lady of Perpetual Help (also known as Our Mother of Perpetual Help from this icon pictured above) we pay tribute to the Blessed Virgin Mary in asking for her assistance. This picture of the Blessed Mother with her Divine Son above has helped her provide strength, comfort and even miracles to the faithful for centuries! 

Oh Mother of Perpetual Help, grant that I may ever invoke your powerful name, the protection of the living and the salvation of the dying. Purest Mary, let your name henceforth be ever on my lips. Delay not, Blessed Lady, to rescue me whenever I call on you. In my temptations, in my needs, I will never cease to call on you, ever repeating your sacred name, Mary, Mary. What a consolation, what sweetness, what confidence fills my soul when I utter your sacred name or even only think of you! I thank the Lord for having given you so sweet, so powerful, so lovely a name. But I will not be content with merely uttering your name. Let my love for you prompt me ever to hail you Mother of Perpetual Help. Mother of Perpetual Help, pray for me and grant me the favor I confidently ask of you.
(Then say three Hail Marys).

First placed in the Church of San Matteo in Rome in 1499, the picture was thought to be lost at one point after Napoleon’s armies sacked that church in 1798. Fortunately, however, it was in the care of the Augustinian fathers until Pope Pius IX ordered that the icon be given to the Redemptorist order at the Church of St. Alphonsus in Rome in 1866 for public viewing once again. Since then it has been copied and venerated in churches and homes all over the world.

Note in this picture how Jesus, while safely cradled in his mother’s arms, looks anxiously at St. Gabriel the Archangel, who holds the cross and nails for His Crucifixion. (St. Michael the Archangel, at left, holds the lance, spear, and the vessel of vinegar and gall for our Lord's Passion as well.) The Blessed Mother looks at us solemnly, perhaps as if in contemplation of her beloved Son’s future Passion and death for our salvation!

Remember that when we pray this novena to our Lady of Perpetual Help, that we are not choosing to worship her over her Divine Son. She is "our Mother on the order of grace,” according to a Vatican II document, and all the graces Mary gives us come directly from our Lord. She is always ready to intercede with Him on our behalf, but never for anything contrary to His wishes.

As long as we approach her as we do Him, with sincerely humble and contrite hearts, we can count on her aid and guidance. Mary’s last spoken words in the Gospels concerned her Son when she said at the wedding feast at Cana “Do whatever he tells You” (John 2:5). If we persevere in our intentions to do Christ’s will for us, we are doing hers as well.

 

Spiritual Direction Services for Assumption Parish

Assumption Parish now offers Spiritual Direction services, through Spiezio and Affiliates Counseling Services. Deacon John Spiezio is available for individual Spiritual Direction services. You can make an appointment with Deacon John by leaving a voicemail message in the parish voicemail through Spiezio and Affiliates. John will promptly call you back and schedule your meeting time to be held in the Parish Center building in a comfortable and private setting. There is a fair fee for spiritual direction services.

Fr. Noesen and the parish staff are happy also to refer you to Deacon John upon request. As we all navigate through our life journey’s it is often helpful to have a guide to listen to our life of faith with God and to assist us in moving into a more full union with God - which we all desire.

Deacon John has been providing spiritual direction and serving in ministry since 1999. He has a wise, gentle and spirit-filled way of guidance.

Please call us if you are interested.

How to Make a Good Confession
Join Us For The Praying Of The Most Holy Rosary

 

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Join us for the praying of the Rosary every weekday morning, Monday through Friday and on the First Saturday morning of each month, at 8:00 A.M. in church.

The Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary was originally instituted to celebrate the victories of the Papal Forces over the Turkish invaders in the Battle of Lepanto in the year 1573. The victory was attributed to the praying of the Rosary. 


The development of the Rosary has a long history. First, a practice was developed of praying 50 Our Fathers in imitation of the 150 Psalms. Then there was a parallel practice of praying 150 Hail Marys. Soon a mystery of Jesus’ life was attached to each Hail Mary. 

Through the legend, which tells of Mary giving the Rosary to St. Dominic, the Dominicans have done much to spread the devotion of the Rosary throughout the world. In the 16th century the Rosary developed into its present form ~ The 15 joyful, sorrowful and glorious mysteries. The purpose of the Rosary is to help us meditate on the great mysteries of salvation.

Pope Pius XII called it a compendium of the Gospel. The main focus is on the Lord Jesus ~ His birth, life, death and resurrection. The Our Father reminds us that Jesus’ Father is the initiator of salvation. The Hail Marys remind us to join with Mary in contemplating these mysteries. They also make us aware that Mary was and is intimately joined with her Son in all the mysteries of His earthly and heavenly existence. The Glorys remind us that the purpose of all life is the gloryof the Holy Trinity.

The Rosary appeals to many. It is simple. The constant repetition of words helps create an atmosphere in which to contemplate the mysteries of God. We sense that Jesus and Mary are with us in the joys and sorrows of life. We grow in hope that God will bring us to share in the glory of Jesus and Mary forever.

During this month of the Holy Rosary, remember to pray the Rosary alone and with your family. It is a beautiful mediation upon the mysteries of our redemption: And just as the Blessed Virgin Mary was immersed into the mysteries of the Lord’s life, we too are invited into those same events so that we can inherit the promise of eternal life in Heaven with Him.

During this month of October, pray... and ask the Blessed Virgin Mary to pray for you, that you may be made worthy of the promises of Christ!

Please click here for How To Pray The Rosary

A Treasury of Catholic Prayers

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The Sign of the Cross
In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen”

Hail Mary
“Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you. Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen”

Our Father
“Our Father, Who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name; Thy kingdom come; Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen”

Grace Before Meals
“Bless us, O Lord, and these your gifts, which we are about to receive from Your bounty through Christ Our Lord. Amen”

Glory Be
“Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen”

Saint Michael the Archangel Prayer
(and prayers after daily Mass each day at Assumption Parish)
Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle. Be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray; and do Thou, O Prince of the Heavenly Host, by the power of God, cast into hell, Satan and all evil spirits, who wander around the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.”

“Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us…Live Jesus in our hearts, forever”

Angel of God
“Angel of God, my guardian dear, to whom God’s love commits me here. Ever this day be at my side to light and guard, to rule and guide. Amen”

Act of Contrition
“Oh my God, I am heartily sorry for having offended You. I detest all my sins because of Your just punishments, but most of all because they offend You, my God, who are all good and deserving of all my love. I firmly resolve, with the help of Your grace, to sin no more and to avoid the near occasion of sin again. Amen”
OR “ Lord Jesus Christ, have Mercy on me, a sinner.”

Hail Holy Queen
“Hail, Holy Queen, Mother of mercy, our life, our sweetness and our hope. To thee do we cry, poor banished children of Eve. To thee do we send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this vale of tears. Turn then, most gracious advocate, thine eyes of mercy toward us, and after this our exile show unto us the blessed fruit of thy womb, Jesus. O clement, O loving O sweet Virgin Mary.

V. Pray for us, O holy Mother of God

R. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.”

Please Remember Your Parish

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Please keep Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Par i sh and Immaculate Conception Parish in mind when making out your Will and in doing your Estate Planning. 

Remembering the Church is a beautiful and fitting way to make a lasting memorial statement of faith for future generations. It is a statement of gratitude to Christ and His Church for the gift of Faith and for the nurturing of that Faith you have received in this life, which hopefully sustained you and helped you along to eternal life.

Contact your Parish Office for a variety of creative ways in which you can remember your Parish in your Will and Estate plans. God Bless you for your generosity.

12 myths about marriage annulments in the Catholic Church

MYTH NUMBER ONE: A Divorced Person is Automatically Excommunicated from the Catholic Church The truth is that divorce itself does not affect or alter a person's status in the Catholic Church. Divorce is a function of the civil law and secular courts. Although it has been a widespread misconception for many years, it is a myth that a divorced Catholic is "excommunicated," this is, not able to receive the sacraments within the Church.

MYTH NUMBER TWO: An Annulment Costs Thousands of Dollars The truth is that no Tribunal anywhere in the world asks for "thousands of dollars," although the fee requested for an annulment process does vary from one Tribunal to another. In the Diocese of Joliet, requests under $200 to help pay the salaries of the lay people that work in the Tribunal and help with the process for the Annulment, such as a psychologist. It is a myth that the process costs thousands of dollars, and in fact no one is ever turned away from a Tribunal because of their inability to pay a fee.

MYTH NUMBER THREE: Only Catholic Marriages Need to be Annulled The truth is that every marriage is considered a promise for life, a promise until death. It makes no difference whether that promise was made in a Catholic ceremony or not. No one, no matter what their religious affiliation or membership, is considered free to contract another marriage if they were married previously. Every prior marriage must be investigated and annulled before a person can enter a new marriage. It is a myth that no annulment is required if a person wasn't married in a Catholic ceremony.

MYTH NUMBER FOUR: If an Annulment is Granted the Children will be Illegitimate The truth is that an ecclesiastical annulment is concerned only with the spouses, and not the children. An annulment has no effect at all on the legitimacy of children, or other arrangements regarding children, such as custody or support. These are all concerns of the civil law, and an ecclesiastical annulment has absolutely no effects under civil law. It is a myth that granting an annulment makes the children illegitimate.

MYTH NUMBER FIVE: It Takes Three to Five Years to Get an Annulment The truth is that every annulment ease is different, and some processes are longer than
others, but few cases ever take more than 18 months from start to finish. Decades ago, it did take several years, but today the longest process is usually finished in 9 to 18 months. Some types of cases can be finished in a month or even less. It is a myth that the typical marriage annulment takes three years or more to complete.

MYTH NUMBER SIX: Anyone who Applies (and Waits Long Enough) Will Get an Annulment The truth is that Tribunals do give negative decisions. The burden of proving a case rests on the Petitioner, that is, the person who applies for an annulment. The Catholic Church presumes that every marriage is a valid union, and there must be sufficient grounds for declaring otherwise. The Tribunal will help the Petitioner to understand what's needed to develop a case, but if there isn't enough proof, the Tribunal will give a negative decision. It is a myth that everyone who applies gets an annulment.

MYTH NUMBER SEVEN: If Children were Born in the Marriage, It Can't be Annulled The truth is that the Catholic Church considers an openness to children to be a natural and essential part of sacramental marriage, but whether any children were actually born or not has no bearing on the possibility of an annulment. If children were born, it is important that both parents live up to their natural and legal obligations to their children. It is a myth, however, that a marriage can't be annulled if the marriage resulted in children.

MYTH NUMBER EIGHT: The Ex-Spouse Has to Agree to an Annulment Or It Can't Be Granted The truth is that both spouses have equal rights in an annulment proceeding, but that doesn't mean that the Respondent—the ex-spouse of the person who starts the annulment process—has to agree to an annulment. The truth is that the Tribunal judges can grant an annulment even if the ex-spouse is adamantly opposed to the idea of an annulment. It is a myth that both spouses have to agree to an annulment.

MYTH NUMBER NINE: An Annulment is Just "Catholic Divorce" The truth is that civil divorce and a church annulment are two vastly different things. A divorce is concerned with the legal realities of marriage only; an annulment is concerned with the religious and spiritual element—the sacrament of marriage. A divorce focuses on the end of a marriage; an annulment looks at the beginning, the very moment the couple said "I do." A divorce looks at marriage in civil law; an annulment looks at marriage from the perspective of the Gospel and of Church doctrine. It is a myth that an annulment is "Divorce, Catholic style."

MYTH NUMBER TEN: An Annulment Means The Marriage Never Took Place The truth is that an annulment can't erase history, and doesn't try to. An annulment in the Catholic Church deals only with the sacrament of marriage, and not the legal, historical, emotional truth of marriage. An annulment states that the sacrament was never present in the marriage, and not that the marriage never took place. It is a myth that an annulment means that the marriage never happened.

MYTH NUMBER ELEVEN: The Tribunal is Like a Courtroom, With Judges, Witnesses, lawyers, & Cross-Examinations The truth is that the Tribunal is a Court of Law for the Church, but it is very different from a civil courtroom. Depending on the type of case, the spouses may have Advocates, and there will be 1 to 3 judges, but most of the work is done in writing, and there is never an emotional courtroom scene as in television dramas. If a person appears in person to offer testimony, it is usually done in a private interview, and never with "cross-examination!" It is a myth that the Tribunal is like a TV courtroom.

MYTH NUMBER TWELVE: The Idea of An Annulment Is Pure Legalism in the Catholic Church The truth is that an annulment is "packaged" in a legal environment, since that is the best way to protect the rights and interests of everyone involved, but it is far more than a "legalistic process." People who've gone through an annulment have found peace and insight into themselves and their marriages. It is a myth that the only concern of the Church in an annulment is legalism, but through the Tribunal process the Church invites you to find healing, forgiveness, and new joy.

For more information, please contact Father Noesen.