Skip to main site content.
(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Isabel y Federica

2 Catholic nuns fall in love, divorce the church … and then tie the knot

By WITW Staff on September 30, 2016

Behold a love story for the ages.

It’s a tale about Isabel and Federica and it’s sure to warm even the coldest of hearts. Three years ago, the two Franciscan nuns in Italy met while doing charity work at a drug rehab center. There was a spark and, over time, they fell in love. The chief problem was, as nuns, they were essentially “married” to the church. But a life-changing opportunity arose back in February. Italy’s government, despite intense opposition from the Catholic Church, passed a law that legalized same-sex marriage. Isabel and Federica finally had a chance to express their love in Italian society. So, they took the first of two plunges. Each of the sisters renounced their vocation and left the church. In the intervening time, they have been outspoken about the church’s hardline stance against homosexuality. “God wants people happy, to live the love in the light of the sun,” Isabel reportedly told Italy’s La Stampa newspaper.

And that brings us to the second plunge. This week, Isabel and Federica were married in a civil union in Pinerolo, a picturesque town in the shadow of the alps. “They prayed a lot about this and … in the end, they took their decision knowing that not many would approve,” Franco Barbero, the officiant who married them, said. Isabel and Federica, he added, are “two lovely people, of intense faith and with serious studies behind them.” Fittingly, Barbero is a former Catholic priest and ardent supporter of gay marriage who was excommunicated by the church in 2003. Today, they can indeed share their love, as Isabel put it, “in the light of the sun.”

Read the full story at Newser.


Marijuana-growing nuns: “They made criminals out of us overnight”

In NYC speech, Pope Francis thanks nuns: “I love you very much”

The comeback of the American nun