Post # 1
Ok so I am basically an athiest by belief but a Catholic by culture and was raised in a fairly devout family. A catholic wedding ceremony is EXTREMELY important to my family. I do not care. My fiance is…generic agnostic veering towards christian-ish? Neither of us are comfortable saying we would be committed to raising Catholic children. To top it off we have an outdoor venue for the ceremony.
Here’s the thing, its REALLY REALLY REALLY important to my family. Like, ruin the entire wedding planning process/threats to not attend important.
I could care less about it being a priest (meaning I am fine with it BEING a priest), even fine with all the pre-cana and what not. But i just can’t figure out how to make this happen. We are totally not people who the church would bless. Is there anyone else in a similar situation? What did you do? I don’t really want to lie my way into a ceremony. Like I semi-seriously considered the other day hiring an ordained actor who would just come in and put on a catholic-esque ceremony and reassure my grandmothers that everything is fine. Obviously thats a little crazy but thats how crazy this has gotten!
Does anyone know if ex-priests will do a Catholic-esque ceremony and talk the good talk to the fam? Other suggestions? The trouble with catholocism here is the lack of middle ground, its either recognized by the church or it isn’t. I’m at a loss…
Post # 3
Um not a whole lot of advice here except that I think the idea is a pretty bad one. I don’t think you should start your marriage out with a lie. Your family would be more devasted to find out that you lied about throught the ceremony and were being fake.
Post # 4
Honestly, your wedding should be about you and Fiance, not your family. Start your marriage off on something you love, not a lie.
Plus, If you have your wedding outside, and don’t agree to raise your children Catholic, or to accept children lovingly from God, etc, your family is going to know it isn’t a Catholic ceremony anyways. There isn’t really a way to fake it.
Post # 5
Have your wedding, if they don’t come, they don’t come. If you really see it being a huge issue, elope.
Compromise is okay but they have to come half way too. Otherwise, do what makes you and your Fiance happy. Be true to yourself. You already know it’s going to be “fake” if you did anything otherwise. The religion you were rasied in still deserves integrity. So if you don’t believe, don’t force it. =)
Post # 6
@csy2947: I don’t think there is any way to do this that would do right by you and your groom, your family, and the Catholic Church. As a Catholic, I greatly respect the marriage sacrament and doing a “fake” one or one where it doesn’t matter to you is a sham in every way.
I think your family would respect you more if you say that you don’t want to denegrade the sacrament by doing it only because they would want you to. Tell them you want to be true to yourself.
Post # 7
I am at a loss for you!! This is tough…
Just some general thoughts though:
First, having an ex-priest doing a ‘Catholic’ ceremony is not feasible, in my eyes. It would not be Catholic, nor would he be considered a priest if he is exonerated, or whatever.
Two, I can see where pleasing your family is important. However, are they even OK with you getting married outdoors?! Because, and I may be wrong, unless you are getting married in a Catholic church it is not a Catholic ceremony, but rather Christian-based in general.
So, this leaves, imo, your options.
1) Continue with your outdoor venue, and try to appease your family with it being Christain based; Christian based readings, ‘traditional vows’, blessing of the rings, etc via a Minister.
2) If that does not work for them, then I feel your only option is to go thru the pre-cana, utilize Church services and a pries, get married in the Church but perhaps without the full Mass…
This is quite a pickle. Good luck!
Post # 8
The trouble with catholocism here is the lack of middle ground, its either recognized by the church or it isn’t
I’m sorry to tell you there’s not much you can do. It’s either a catholic wedding or it’s not — and anyone who actually cares about it will know. You might be able to fool your agnostic frineds, but you can’t fool devout catholics.
You pretty much have to get married inside the church. (As in – Catholics are almost never ever allowed to marry outdoors or on a beach). And if you feel no preist will marry you, then a church wedding is not going to happen. Even if we entertained the insane idea of hiring an actor – you aren’t going to be able to use a church for him to perform in. lol.
You could assure your grandparents that you are going back later to the church to have your marriage blessed or whatever they call it and then not actually do that. Since it doesn’t really exist. But if your grandparents are loosing it a bit you might be able to get by on that.
Post # 9
Since the catholic church doesn’t have wedding ceremony’s outdoors how would they believe that it truly was a catholic ceremony?
I was raised catholic, but am not practising while it was still important for me to keep some catholic-influences in the ceremony. Our wedding was outdoors and officiated by a reverend (protestant i believe but she does all types of weddings). We had a blessing, 2 readings, one from Corinthians, a prayer for the couple, etc. We took aspects from the catholic ceremony and intertwined them with non-religious aspects.
I don’t think you’re going to be able to ‘fool’ any of your cathlic relatives into thinking it truly is a catholic ceremony, but you can still make it a religous ceremony with readings, blessings, prayers etc. Find a minister or reverand that will officiate. I’ve heard that there are some ex-priests or retired-catholic priests that do all-types of weddings but not sure where you would find one.
**It was important to ME to have God bless our ceremony, wether or not it was in a catholic church. It sounds like you don’t care one way or the other, so as PP’s said it does sound fake, and I’m not sure if you should even do it just for your families sake when you don’t believe in it.
Post # 10
Agreed with everyone in here. Fiance and I are both Agnostic from very Christian families. We aren’t advertising that we’re having a secular ceremony at all because I do NOT want to deal with what I’m going to hear about it. People have tried to convince us to have a religious ceremony/get married in a church, and my explanation is that, because Fiance and I do not believe that way, it would be a terrible idea for us to start out our marriage with a lie.
If your families can’t get past your differing beliefs to attend your wedding, I’m not sure these are really people you want in your life.
Post # 11
@csy2947: Check out the Episcopal Church. All the pomp and circumstance of Catholic but none of the rigidity. Your family will probably feel very comfortable with the style of ceremony, as it’s super close to the Catholic mass (although we ordain women, so that might be a consideration)
Post # 12
As a Catholic, your idea is sligthtly offensive to me – as if you want to make a show of a sacred ceremony.
If you don’t want the Catholic ceremony, you need to be firm with your family and not do it. Don’t make a mockery of something so sacred to so many just for the sake of pleasing grandma.
Post # 13
Yeah…I think this is probably the first stand you two will have to take as a couple against the family. You are adults who get to have your own beliefs, and it’s sad if your family doesn’t love you enough to support you in marriage simply because you don’t share religious beliefs, but if that’s their stance, it’s THEIR loss.
Post # 14
You can do a simple google search and probably find an ex-priest who is an officiant to do Catholic like ceremony.
If you get married outside, it won’t be recognized by the church anyway. I have a relative who is divorced but not annulled and found an ex-priest who did their ceremony. A friend of mine who was raised Catholic, but did not receive sacraments did the same thing. The families were happy. It’s possible!
I think the ex-priests gave them some pre-marital counseling sessions in place of pre-cana and they didn’t have to vow that they would raise Catholic children or even have children. Hope this helps!
Post # 15
It sounds like what your family wants is for your marriage to be a sacrament, which it won’t be unless you do it the “real” Catholic way.
What’s more important to you – pleasing your family, or being true to yourself? Because as you yourself said, there’s no middle ground. You either have to go full-on Catholic, which would be a lie because you don’t care and don’t believe in it, or just do what you want and don’t pretend to be Catholic or religious at all.
If your family doesn’t come, it’s their loss. Either they accept who you are or they don’t. And frankly, I’d call their bluff. They’ll come see you get married.
Post # 16
Please do not try to “lie” or “fake-out” your devout family. Would be a worse offense than just having an honest, non-religious ceremony. You’re an adult capable of having the wedding YOU and your Fiance want without succombing to familial pressure. And besides that… those of us who ARE devout Catholics may take serious offense to brides who “fake” their vows… a sacrament.. to please family. Do what’s right for YOU. xo