Angelina Pivarnick Meets Divorced Priest Father Rix in ‘Jersey Shore: Family Vacation’ Season 5 Episode 17

Angelina Pivarnick goes to church in the Jersey Shore: Family Vacation episode “El Paso Part 2,” where she meets with the priest who married her and Chris Larangeira. In the episode, the reality TV star also meets another priest, Father Rix. He is in a similar situation to Angelina, having been married and gone through a divorce. Below, we explain why the priest at Angelina’s church was able to get married and divorced during his vocation.

[SPOILER ALERT: Spoilers ahead regarding the Jersey Shore: Family Vacation episode “El Paso Part 2.”]

Angelina Pivarnick with the priest who married her, Father Joe, and Chris Larangeira in 'Jersey Shore: Family Vacation' Season 3
Angelina Pivarnick with Father Joe, who introduced her to Father Rix, and Chris Larangeira | Facebook/MTV

Angelina Pivarnick meets with Father Joe, the priest who married her and Chris Larangeira 

Father Joe Ciccone is a priest at Saint Joseph Mission Church in New Jersey. Previously, he appeared at Angelina and Chris’ wedding in Jersey Shore: Family Vacation Season 3. 

“Father Joe is a really great, great guy,” Angelina tells the cameras in “El Paso Part 2.” Then, she sits down with the priest in the episode to fill him in about what’s going on between her and Chris. 

“You know from the beginning I had this special bond with you,” Father Joe tells Angelina. “You are a good, decent, kind, beautiful woman. [Divorce] is something that is hard that many people go through, but I also don’t think it’s the end.” 

During their conversation, Father Joe references Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino and how he transformed his life after making mistakes. He feels Angelina can do the same. 

Angelina low-key flirts with her divorced priest Father Rix in ‘Jersey Shore: Family Vacation’ 

After giving marriage advice to a group of parishioners and receiving multiple blessings from Father Joe, Angelina meets Father Rix. “Father Joe has told me so much about you,” he tells Angelina. “I feel for what you’re going through.” 

Father Joe interjects to share a bit more about Father Rix, who is also divorced. “I knew his wife,” Father Joe explains to Angelina. “[His] marriage lasted just a year; it ended very painfully.” 

“I did not know priests could [marry],” Angelina admits to the cameras. “Didn’t know that they could get divorced either.”  

She asks Father Rix if he met anyone else yet and if he’s happy. “I’m happy,” he responds. “I haven’t met anyone else yet.” He concludes their conversation with: “Hopefully you can stop by the mission some time.” 

“This is probably the way he slides into girl’s DMs,” Angelina says to the cameras, adding: “I can’t date a priest. Come on, me?” 

Why Angelina’s priest and Father Rix Thorsell can get married

After learning about Father Rix’s previous marriage, Angelina encourages Father Joe to join Christian Mingle in “El Paso Part 2.” According to Father Joe, only priests in the Roman Catholic church can’t get married. The Saint Joseph Mission Church describes itself as a “Progressive Church in the Old Catholic Tradition,” according to their website, which is part of the reason their priests can get married.   

According to an article from the Los Angeles Times, ancient churches, including Orthodox churches, allow married priests. Many churches in “communion with Rome also allow for married priests, and the Latin Rite itself allowed for married clergy for the first millennium of its existence.” 

The article also states: “Many married Catholic priests in the U.S. are former Episcopalians, but there is another path for married men to work as priests in the Catholic Church. Eastern Catholic Churches have allowed the ordination of married men as priests for centuries.” 

Father Rix Thorsell is active on Saint Joseph Mission Church’s Facebook

Father Rix is very active on the church’s Facebook page, often sharing photos and leading digital masses. He often posts about the churches other celebrity connections, too. Most recently, Father Rix was with Dancing with the Stars celebrity Maksim Chmerkovskiy for an event honoring those in the Ukraine.

Watch Jersey Shore: Family Vacation on MTV.

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