Reason twice-divorced PM was allowed to marry in a Catholic church

The prime minister may have never been married in the eyes of the Catholic Church, an expert said.

Boris Johnson married Carrie Symonds in a small ceremony at Westminster Catholic Cathedral on Saturday, despite being divorced twice.

However, since neither his six-year first marriage to Allegra Mostyn-Owen nor his second 27-year marriage to Marina Wheeler were Catholic ceremonies, they can be invalid in the eyes of the Church.

Matt Chinery, an ecclesiastical and canon lawyer, told Times Radio on Sunday, “If you are a Roman Catholic, you must have a Roman Catholic priest or deacon oversee your wedding.”

He explained that any other form of marriage “is only valid if you have previously had your bishop’s permission to marry outside the Catholic Church”.

Boris Johnson was baptized a Catholic but confirmed an Anglican as a teenager.

Mr. Chinery stated, “What I think happened here is that the Catholic Church saw Boris Johnson’s first two marriages (and) that he was Roman Catholic by baptism.

“You looked at this and said, ‘You are Catholic because you were baptized Catholic. Their first two weddings were not in a Catholic church overseen by a Catholic pastor. Therefore, the Roman Catholic Church does not recognize these two marriages as valid. ‘. ”

He added: “In the eyes of the Catholic Church, Boris Johnson woke up last week to someone who was unmarried and had never been married and was therefore allowed to get married in the cathedral that weekend.”

The Catholic writer Catherine Pepinster took the same view.

She told the Mail on Sunday that Mr. Johnson’s previous marriages took place “in non-Catholic environments” and were not recognized by the Church.

“This is his first marriage for the Church,” she said, adding, “The others need not be annulled.”


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