Post # 1
and now he’s saying he’ll do it for me but he doesn’t really believe in it. What do I do? Its wrong to make him do something he doesn’t believe in but at the same time, I want my marriage recognised by the church. What should I do???
Post # 3
he doesn’t need to convert for your marriage to be recognized by the church, so there’s no confusion, let me say it again: it will still be recognized. he should only do it if he wants to and believes it, which it doesn’t sound like he does.
Post # 4
Religion doesn’t matter to be recognized. My husband is Buddhist and I am Wiccan and my pastor was Christian. Our vows and papers are still legal. No one should convert to anything unless they believe it in their heart and soul.
Post # 5
i guess it depends on your reasoning for having him convert. are you doing it because you want him to have identical beliefs as you, because you want it to be recognized by the church, because you want him to go to heaven, or because your family will be more accepting?
Post # 6
Agree with elliestan. All you need for the Church to recognize the marriage is to have a priest bless the marriage. This can be done by having your priest at your wedding even if it’s outside the Catholic church.
Post # 7
Never try to convert someone. Accept his beliefs as they are. If the Catholic church wont marry him unless he converts, I think you’d be better going to another church of Christian denomination faith. It would then still be acknowledged as a Christian marriage (if thats what is important to you) and he would not feel pressured to do something he’s not wanting to do.
Post # 8
@Pia2010: again, that’s not an issue. The Catholic church WILL marry them as long as one of them (in this case, her) is Catholic.
I think it’s more important for OP to focus on why she wants him to convert. My dad’s not Catholic but I was raised as such, FH isn’t Catholic but he wants to convert after we’re married. I’ve never told him he should, it’s something he wants to do for himself. I would never ask anyone to change their religious beliefs, especially my future husband. If he wants to, that’s great but if he changes his mind, I’m still cool with it.
Post # 9
Honestly, its not that important to me if he is Catholic. I think everyone should have their own beliefs and don’t want to force mine on him. It is important for me to uphold my own beliefs though and I was under the impression (maybe I misunderstood my priest) that we both had to be Catholic to have our marriage blessed and recognized in the church.
@elliestan: (or anyone else who knows) Do you know how we would go about getting our marriage blessed after our legal wedding? (we are not having our ceremony in a church as not to offend his family, who are not Catholic)
Post # 10
@kingytobe: good to hear! I think it was definitely a miscommunication between you and your priest – your FH does need to agree that he’s okay with bringing any children up in the faith, maybe that’s what he was referencing, who knows! if you don’t want to get married in the church (like if you want an outdoor or a courthouse wedding) then you would get a convalidation sometime afterward. it’s a fairly simple process from what I understand. If you want a bit of Catholic influence in your legal wedding, you can also see if a priest will attend to give a blessing, but that doesn’t mean you’ll receive the sacrament of marriage.
You mentioned you don’t want to offend his non-Catholic family – can you explain what you mean? like – are they anti or something? because that will surely cause problems when/if you have kids so be sure to talk about that! :] if they are just unfamiliar with it (like my FH’s family is) then you don’t have to have a nuptial mass – since only my side is Catholic we’re not going to – my priest was in total agreement.
here’s a link that I had saved at one time on convalidation when I was considering an outdoor wedding. I ultimately decided I’d rather just have the wedding at my parish, but it has some good info, especially the “7 steps” near the bottom:
Post # 11
Agreeing with PP, he doesn’t need to convert for it to be a valid marriage.
Do you think this might be a cautious way of saying he’s interested? What if you two took RCIA classes together? People can do it with no intent of converting. It would be a good way for him to learn about what you believe regardless. Especially if you are planning on raising your kids Catholic.
Post # 12
@elliestan: a priest usually wont come to “bless” a wedding. There are three options to have a marriage recognized:
1. you can get married in a Catholic church. Anyone can get married in a church as long as one of you is Catholic. It doesn’t matter if you live together, had a kid out of wedlock, if the other person is Jewish or even an Athiest, etc. Even if you are divorced it still might be an option (after an anullment).
2. you can request a dispensation to be married outside of a church. In this case you can have the wedding anywhere but it is as recognized as if you were married in a church. You need to still go through Catholic marriage prep and you will need a reason to be married outside of a church (like one of you is not Catholic).
3. you can get married outside of the Church without a dispensation then request a convalidation later (which is a second marriage and requires new vows). This is the last option because it might not be granted and you are not in good standing (you are not allowed communion) between the civil wedding and the convalidation, which is usually months.
Post # 13
I’m catholic, and my church won’t marry us unless both myself and my fiancé have our baptism, first communion and confirmation. We need to present our papers and everything. Fiance has everything but his confirmation, so luckily he has no issues with that and doesn
t have that much work to do. But yes, there are some churches out there that wont marry you unless both are members of the catholic church.
Post # 14
@CatholicBee: not to get into semantics, but my meaning when I said give a blessing was not that they “bless” the wedding in that the church says it’s valid (…which is what I said in the same sentence), but that they offer some words/a prayer for the couple upon request. it’s rather common in mixed faith weddings when the couple decides not to be married in the church but would still like that presence. as far as getting a dispensation goes, they are extremely hard to get (nearly impossible) and on the Bee we usually brush over them because they’re so unattainable. as far as convalidations are concerned, i still point to the link i posted above – they are the route that most couples go when they want to get married outside the church for whatever reason but also want their union recognized by the church.
@Mrs.H2B: you’re both Catholic though, right? That’s a whole ‘nother issue and shouldn’t be used to compare in OP’s case (apples to oranges) because it’s actually more “work” for 2 Catholics to get married than a Catholic and a non-Catholic. they need you to ‘present your papers’ so they can make sure that you haven’t received the sacrament of marriage before – it’s common practice for any Catholic getting married in the church, the non-Catholic party does not have to, because their baptismal certificate wouldn’t have notations anyway.
Post # 15
@Mrs.H2B: that’s actually not true. All Catholic churches have the same rules regarding who can gett married (that’s what makes them Catholic). If a priest violates those rules, he can be defrocked.
Post # 16
Sorry if I’m repeating previous comments- didn’t read them all.
As long as one of you is Catholic, the Catholic church will marry you and recognise it as a valid marriage- or else they wouldn’t marry you in the first place!
The reasoning behind both parties having to present the church with their certificates of baptism etc is because it is only when two Christians marry that it is considered a sacrament. If your fiance was Christened into another denomination of the Christian faith, using the Trinitarian formula (in ‘them name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit) then that is recognised as him being a Christian and so your marriage would be sacramental. So he wouldn’t have to be a Catholic Christian for it to be recognised, as long as it is two Christians entering into marriage.
Your priest will have to ‘okay it’ with the Bishop etc if you are marrying outside of the faith, to someone of another faith or to someone of no faith at all, but today this is something they are very used to doing as it is increasingly common.
Whether it is a sacrament or not, the church will marry you and that marriage is as valid as any other in the church.