(Closed) HELP! Catholic, but not getting married in church

posted 9 years ago in Catholic
Post # 3
661 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: February 2011

I was raised catholic as well (in fact, same way you were).  Baptism, communion, confirmation … but went to church when we could.  Was never mandatory (unless Sunday school made it). 

I’m not sure there is a “special person” that marries you and then brings it to the church (unless its the priest or one of the minions).  Is minions a bad word?  Not trying to hold it to be, fyi.  🙂 

Anyhoo, my grandfather is marrying us on the beach and its a civil ceremony (again, for the same reasons you didn’t want to be married by a priest).  Plus, I think its cool that my grandfather is doing it.  (he’s a judge).  But, Fiance grandmother (who is very religious) is not at all happy. 

This, I do know.  You can take that marriage certificate and have it blessed at a Cathlic Church before the officiant sends it off.  If I remember correctly, in order to be “blessed” by the catholic church (as a couple, not just the certificate) … you don’t have to necessarily be married in one, but you do need to speak to the priest and he does a special prayer (for you and your husband – kneeling, of course) in front of mass so the prayer and blessing is done within the house of God. 

Best of both worlds?  Have a minister (of a nondenominational church) marry you … that way you weren’t married by someone of another religion AND it will still be a religious ceremony.  Hope it helps!

Post # 4
350 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: January 1991

You can’t just have a marriage “blessed”.  If you aren’t married in a Catholic Church, what you need to request is called a “convalidation” which can be done by a priest or a deacon.  A convalidation isn’t a blessing – it’s an entirely new wedding ceremony, including readings, vows, blessings, etc.  Now, you don’t have to have 300 guests and a flower girl at the convalidation – but you do need two witnesses and do need to exchange vows and rings again.  Also, you’ll have to go through Catholic pre-cana (premarital counseling) just the same as if you were getting married for the first time (because the Church views your previous marriage as invalid and the convalidation as your actual first wedding).  You can’t get a convalidation in a day – the counseling and paperwork take months.

The first non-Catholic wedding can be performed by anyone, as long as the wedding isn’t a mockery of the Catholic faith (satanic ritual, “woman priest”, excommunicated person, etc).

And just to make sure you’re clear, if you’re married outside of a Catholic Church and have not had a convalidation, you’re considered to be in an “irregular state” and cannot receive communion in a Catholic Church (similarly, by Catholic doctrine your soul has lost salvation).  If don’t believe in Catholic doctrine anymore, the Catholic teachings of your situation probably don’t matter that much, but I wanted to make that point so that those who do believe understand the importance of a valid sacrament.



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