Navigating Faith-Based Divorce
For Christian couples, entering into marriage is sustained with the hope for a mutually supportive, loving, and rewarding life-long relationship. But when a relationship deteriorates, divorce becomes a life-altering decision requiring much thought and consideration.
For families of faith, there is a lot of pressure on spouses to hold a marriage together beyond its viability — especially when children are involved. Yet, holding together a relationship may not consider the well-being of any individual family members. Unfortunately, faith and religion are sometimes not enough to hold a marriage together. But faith-based divorce comes with an added stigma that can separate you from the religious community you rely on for emotional and moral support.
What Is Faith-Based Divorce?
Faith-based divorce incorporates the teachings of your faith into the process of divorce. For Christians, one of the main tenets of a faith-based divorce is to first separate and pursue forgiveness and reconciliation. The separation period can be used to examine the personal and social costs of divorce as well as the necessity and benefits.
The Christian belief that, in marriage, a couple is “no longer two, but one flesh” (Matthew 19:6) is central to the union. When forgiveness and reconciliation are not achieved, there are several circumstances in which the idea of “one flesh” is violated, freeing up a couple to pursue divorce.
These circumstances are:
- Sexual Immorality: This can include adultery, the use of pornography, and other issues of sexual intimacy.
- Unbelieving Spouse: There can be times when one spouse falls out of belief and no longer wants to pursue taking an active part in the religion.
- Domestic Abuse: A person who is harming his or her spouse is not treating the other as “one flesh.”
Using Faith-Based Mediation
Faith-based mediation follows the same process as secular mediation to resolve issues of a divorce settlement, such as finances and parenting. But this type incorporates a faith-based approach that takes into consideration the family's relationship with the Lord. It allows couples to work through their conflicts while staying aligned with their religious values. Faith-based mediators can help couples at odds with each other walk down a more peaceful path toward an amicable solution by helping them come to a settlement based on the spiritual scriptures that guide their everyday lives.
Faith-based mediation can be employed during any divorce with many benefits over litigating the divorce in court:
- Mediation is far less expensive than hiring attorneys and going to court. For many faith-based divorces, going to court can be an unnecessary expense.
- The settlement and how you organize your future are in your control. Both spouses have input, and the mediator is skilled in helping you to reach an agreement and consensus instead of heightening differences through anger.
- Mediation is gentler for children. Keeping them out of the courts is always in their best interest and makes co-parenting easier if there are fewer memories of angry legal proceedings.
- Mediation is a shorter process than litigation, which can take months.
- You and your spouse have a greater chance of coming out of mediation on a friendlier footing with a better understanding of each other.
CONTACT FAITH BASED DIVORCE LAWYER IN ILLINOIS TODAY
Faith based divorces can be more complex and last longer than other divorces. We at The Law Firm of Erin N Birt PC (Birt Law) want to make sure you receive the help you need to accomplish your faith based divorce within the law of Illinois without too many obstacles. If you have been wronged and feel that it will make a difference to discuss those wrongs in your divorce process or if you have been served a divorce but disagree with it, contact us online or call us directly at (630) 891-2478 to schedule a consultation & planning session. Also read our resources and tips for a faith based divorce.