Post # 17
I finished my conversion process this Vigil– after 9 months of preparations, I still don’t feel totally Catholic or totally ready! Our teachers told us this was fine, that we’d never know everything and we’d always have things to learn no matter how long the conversion process was.
Know that if you do wait until after your marriage to fully convert, you won’t be able to receive communion at your wedding. Not that big of a deal, but worth mentioning.
Regarding BC, I’m pretty sure I’ll be using BC for the first year or so of our marriage because we’re just not ready for kids yet. Yes, it’s against teachings, but we also don’t plan on having intercourse just for procreation, so I think I’m just going to pray about it and hope my decision, based on an informed conscience, is enough.
Many Catholics don’t 100% follow the Church. I converted in a church with gay members and pro-choice members. We all make decisions based on the information we have and we just try to do the best we can.
Post # 18
Just to clarify, Catholics don’t believe that intercourse is “just” for procreation – we believe that it has to remain open
to procreation, but it goes beyond that. It’s also an expression of love – and a lot of fun! Theology of the Body goes into a lot of detail about it. One of the big misconceptions (inadvertent pun?) about sex and Catholicism is that it’s seen as somehow “dirty” and “only for procreation” – not true!
Post # 19
I thought one must also be confirmed in order to marry in a Catholic church? Not sure though.
Post # 20
I wouldn’t worry about the contraceptives issue or other similar issues. We are in the 21st century, and many (not all) priests will understand that times are changing, even if the opinions of the catholic church are not. We had our meeting with the priest last week.. and had a pretty good discussion. He said that if he enforced the contraceptive thing, or the living together , that it would be hard to find couples who would go to church anymore. You aren’t alone in this! I am very firm with my catholic beliefs,… but I am on birth control, I live with my Fiance, and I don’t plan to change this. We knew we loved each other and we would be married eventually (yay 2 months!) and that’s why we made the decisions we did. To me, this does not mean I am any less of a Catholic.
I’m not sure what advice to give you regarding the situation with your mom… probably tell her how you feel and if she doesn’t respect that , then IMO, I wouldn’t even entertain the subject around her anymore.. I would change the subject to the best of my ability and keep it at that.
Post # 21
Why on earth would you want to be catholic?! JUST KIDDING..
But anyway, what Future Mrs K said!
Post # 22
Hi there sweetheart, im from mexico.
I haven’t had my wedding by the church yet since neither DH and I are confirmed.
You must finish the course and be a confirmed catholic if you want to marry by the church.
Don’t worry about the family planning thing, just tell the priest whatever he wants to hear and you take the pill or use protection. Sometimes religions goes way too far.
That doesnt mean you’re not a good catholic. 🙂
Post # 23
No, not necessarily. I think it may have been that way a few decades ago, but the rules are now a little different.
For jessitaylor, or any adult in a similar position who is looking at converting to Catholicism, if she decides to go through with it then all the “sacraments of initiation” happen at once. If she is already baptized a Christian (which I’m guessing she is since her mother is a vicar in the Church of England?) then at her conversion she would receive her First Communion as well as her Confirmation. An unbaptized person who joins the Church receives all three, Baptism + Communion + Confirmation.
If she opts not to convert, she can still get married in the Church, and it will still be recognized as a sacrament (marriage between baptized persons is a sacrament whether both parties are Catholic or not). She, her Fiance and the priest will need to decide whether to have a full Nuptial Mass with communion, or just the wedding. Generally if one member of the couple isn’t going to be able to receive communion, it’s not included in the wedding, since that demonstrates division in the midst of a rite that’s all about unity. The wedding includes the rest of the service (readings, blessings, etc.) but the Eucharistic prayer and the consecration are omitted.
Even an unbaptized person, or a baptized-but-unconfirmed non-Catholic, can marry a Catholic in the Church. If the spouse is unbaptized, it’s automatically celebrated without Mass.
For a Catholic who was baptized as a child but who didn’t get confirmed, I’m actually not sure how it works. They may need to get confirmed before they can marry (since confirmation is the sacrament that marks assuming mature responsibility for your spirituality, sort of a “transition to spiritual adulthood,” and matrimony is pretty obviously a sacrament of adulthood – but I don’t remember seeing anything in the marriage prep. materials about confirmation, and you’d think they would have mentioned it … Any other bees out there know the answer on that one?)
Post # 24
My Fiance is not confirmed, and we are still able to be married in the catholic church, with a full mass. he was baptized and had his first communion. If he didn’t have these two, then we still would have been able to get married in the catholic church, just not with a full mass.
Post # 25
That’s actually not true. The Church teaches primacy of a well-formed
conscience. In this example, the use of artificial birth control to disrupt God’s plan for love between married couples can NEVER be changed, since it is written as natural law upon our hearts. (See books like Theology of the Body Explained, Love and Responsibility, Men Women and the Mystery of Love, for more info.) Therefore, the Church would respond to your claim that you are “following your conscience” by the obvious explanation that your conscience is not well-formed.
Hitler probably would have argued that he was “following his conscience…”
That is HORRIBLE advice. “Just tell the priest what he wants to hear?” Um, wow. Ok, well you’re getting married before GOD and starting your marriage out with a LIE does not seem the wisest thing to do. Rules are put into place for a reason, and the priest should never explicitly ask you if you plan on using birth control, but rather, are you open
to children. If you are not, then you should either spend some serious time researching WHY the Church asks such a question (hint: it’s not a casual question.) for example by reading some of the great books mentioned by myself and PP, and then if you still
disagree, perhaps you should reconsider why you want to get married in the Church.
Post # 26
I agree with the spirit and the premises of what you’re saying, but I think (as a general rhetorical rule of thumb) bringing in the Hitler example is a little unnecessary. It usually just has the effect of making people angry, shutting down conversations and causing people to throw up barriers to dialogue and understanding.
Post # 27
Yes i am baptized! I like that I can still get married in the church if i’m not ready to convert yet – as i understand it we would need to get permission from the bishop to do this but its possible
It’s great that your priest has such a open minded approach. I think if i could ahve a similar conversation i wouldnt be having the doubts that i have. Thing is the priest that my Future Mother-In-Law is talking to is ultraconservative (so she says and shes very conservative herself) so i cant imagine him thinking along those lines. Actually you mentioning that you live with your fiance just made me realise i dont know whether the fact i live with mine will be an issue. I can’t legally work until im married and my legal status is changed so i dont actually have the funds to live in a seperate place. a whole new issue – great! haha
Post # 28
Oh, wow … yes, you have a fair amount of complexity on your hands!
Yes, the bishop does have to give approval of mixed marriages, but it’s just a formality. They are very common nowadays.
Re. your living situation, a conservative priest might have issues with it, but you also have very legitimate extenuating circumstances, what with your immigration status and the limitations on your ability to work. If I were you, I would try to see if there are any English-speaking priests in your area, or maybe even an English-speaking nun who could help you out as an interpreter and spiritual advisor – they would be better-equipped than a layperson both to translate and to explain nuances for you, and, if you are stuck working with your FMIL’s ultraconservative priest, having another bilingual priest/nun to help you out would be a source of moral support as well. Best of luck!
Post # 29
I’m in a similar situation. I’ve considered converting (not for DH as he isn’t Catholic, but b/c I’m drawn to the teachings of the faith); however, we are CBC and feel very strongly about our decision. Many people (including many Catholics) have told me to simply overlook this because no one agrees with 100% of the teachings, but I don’t feel comfortable setting myself up to be a hyprocrite. Not to mention, the church is so vocal so often about believing in the importance of being “open” to children, so it is highly unlikely it just wouldn’t come up (or come up seldomly). I’ve mulled over the possibility of simply ignoring this belief, but, for now, I just don’t feel comfortable doing it.
Post # 30
I do need to read Theology of the Body. If you’ve got the time, could you tell me if it addresses non-intercourse sexual acts? I just can’t wrap my mind around the difference between “not just for procreation” but “must be PIV intercourse without birth control.” Trying to phrase things succintly without being crude– is it that some acts are okay as foreplay but not okay as the sole deed? I have trouble seeing how saying “a guy can only orgasm inside a woman” not be considered intercourse for procreation. (Yes, not all intercourse acts would lead to children and the ones that didn’t wouldn’t be considered “dirty”, but if other versions of sex aren’t allowed… I just can’t mesh the concept together.)
(Absolutely no snark intended– FI is a cradle Catholic and he’s normally the one that helps me talk out my confusions with teachings, but I’d love to hear it from anyone with some knowledge.)
Also for someone without confirmation, they can go through RCIA– but aren’t required to attend everything, at least not at my church. We had a friend highschoolers go through the program and be confirmed “late” when the rest of us did Communion/Confirmation and Baptism/Communion/Confirmation.
Post # 31
Obviously I don’t have all of my facts totally straight re: Catholic teachings, since I’m a new Catholic, but I think that could be something worth talking over with a priest. Priests and nuns electively give up their ability as childbearing people when they choose to serve God. Granted, not the same as being a married couple, but still worth a thought. The church I go to, which admittedly is pretty liberal, thinks that everyone has something they can bring to the faith. One of the priests lamented that he couldn’t have a family when he became ordained, so another priest reassured him by saying the best way to change the faith was from the inside!