A bride to receive Communion at her wedding in the state of mortal sin

A good friend of mine was invited to a Catholic wedding by the bride. The bride and groom are getting married in December but have been living together for over five years. The bride has told my friend that she is sexually active with her fiance and sees nothing wrong with it. She thinks it is “old-fashioned” to wait until one is married to live together and engage in sexual intercourse. She does not regularly attend Mass but is going to have a wedding with a Mass and plans to receive Communion. The priest who has been counseling the couple has supposedly asked them not to sleep together before the wedding but the bride later told my friend that “that is none of the priest’s business.”

There is also a bachelorette party in which the young women will be drinking and taking part in some distasteful and provocative games. My friend has declined to participate in the bachelorette party but has already RSVPed to the wedding. She is friends with the bride and has tried to talk to her but her friend will not listen to anything regarding the faith.

My friend doesn’t know what to do in this situation and I want to be able to give her good advice. With a friend that will not take her seriously in matters of faith, should she attend the wedding anyway and pray for her to convert? Or should she approach the bride with more information on receiving Communion in the state of mortal sin? She doesn’t want to damage the friendship but wants to do the right thing. Please help!

I would say yes, she can attend the wedding, and definitely pray for her conversion. This wedding is presumably valid, despite the premarital relations.

Or should she approach the bride with more information on receiving Communion in the state of mortal sin? She doesn’t want to damage the friendship but wants to do the right thing. Please help!

This requires a prudent choice, and I am too far removed from the situation to advise. But always pray :smiley:

Oh my! :frowning: That is quite a dilema. I think your friend should humbly approach this bride and remind her of the dire consequences to her soul if she should take communion while in grave sin. That would be sacrilegious and a very grave sin. This bride would be essentially spitting in the face of Christ by her lack of respect for the doctrines of the Church and ignoring her Priest’s advice not to be sexually active with her fiance before marriage.

If the bride still ignores the counsel of her friend, then this friend should approach the Priest and let him know of the Bride’s disdain for the Sacrament of Communion and the disrepect of the Body and Blood of Christ!!

If your friend says nothing and this bride goes ahead and commits sacrilege, then your friend in all likelyhood would be committing the sin of omission by not doing what she should have, and could be guilty of sharing in this bride’s grave sin.

Catholic Catechism says:

CCC 1868 - Sin is a personal act. Moreover, we have a responsibility for the sins committed by others when we cooperate in them:
– by participating directly and voluntarily in them;
– by ordering, advising, praising, or approving them;
by not disclosing or not hindering them when we have an obligation to do so;
– by protecting evil doers

May God’s Holy Spirit guide and help your friend to do what she should in regard to this bride.

I believe that most Parishes still require the Sacrament of Penance fairly close to the Wedding. Your friend may want to be sure that this is not the case before she judges to harshly the state of one’s soul.

I would agree with your advice except for going to the priest. I do not think the OP’s friend has any right interjecting herself into this in this manner. Your quote from the Catechism does not work either as there is no obligation on the OP’s friend in the case of her friend.

Its a tough call. If this was happening with me I would talk to my friend and remind them of what the Church teaches and then see how they react. If they insist that they feel they are doing right and will receive communion without confession and without following the priest’s directions regarding pre-martial sex then I would inform them that this goes against all that I believe and although we are friends and I value that friendship is is obvious that my friend does not feel the same way as she is spitting upon my beliefs and the Church’s Teachings so I would have to unRSVP for the wedding.

I would do this because the friend felt the need to let the OP’s friend know what is going on and if she did not want the friend to know about it then she should not have told her.


Unless your friends sees the bride and groom committing mortal sins, your friend is in no place whatsoever to judge them. For all she knows, the bride and groom may not be sleeping together-they might be just as chaste as your friend.

The bride has been very vocal about her sexual relations with her fiance. It is no secret and my friend has discussed it with the bride on a regular basis. The bride has flat out said that she does not believe premarital sex and cohabitation are sins. The bride says that she knows the Church’s teaching she just does not accept it and chooses to live as she pleases. Therefore, my friend is not judging or making assumptions. She is simply going off of what her friend openly talks about.

I think the friend should be free to decide whether to go or not go. Personally, I would find this disgusting and would stay away from this wedding.

This is right on point with what I was going to say. I wouldn’t be able to attend the wedding either if the friend was so casual towards the law of the Church. It would bother me tremendously. :frowning:

But your friend still wouldn’t know for a fact unless she has seen them, er…you know.:o. Some people lie about those things in order to be more accepted by friends.

And, even she did-perhaps it’s not a good idea to preach and act holier than thou (no, not saying anyone is, just a good warning). Remember that no one is perfect and we all of our crosses to bare.

[BIBLEDRB]1 Corinthians 10:27-30[/BIBLEDRB]

This may be off topic - but then what does she feel the purpose of marriage is then - is she going to open to children - are these true vows. These are the things I would be more concerned about if I were your friend.

I think correcting a friend in a loving way is charitable. I do not think it is being “holier than thou.” It is much more likely that this girl is telling the truth. To make the leap that she is lying is too far of a stretch for me. Even if she were lying, we should correct her lovingly so that she realizes it is not normal to sin in order to be accepted by friends. I don’t think she would be lying to my friend because she knows that my friend adheres to Catholic teaching and her rebelling from the Church does not make her more acceptable to my friend. She thinks my friend is out of touch and old-fashioned.

If one is boasting about their sexual sin on the way to the altar…this is a grave matter. We should not take it lightly and allow this to go on.

Of course we are not perfect and my friend and I are not condemning anyone. We are simply looking out for Jesus in the Eucharist, seeking to uphold the sanctity and holiness of the Sacrament of Marriage, defending chastity, and upholding the teachings of the Church. This does not equate to judging and being self righteous.

My friend has been very loving and has not cast judgement upon this girl. She treats her with respect and wants what is best for her. What is best for this girl, in my opinion is to gain a realization that her actions which she boasts about are in fact sinful. Otherwise, how will she ever amend her life and pursue a healthy marriage?

This is a very good point. To be honest with you, I think my friend has sort of thrown in the towel on this because the bride simply won’t listen to her. She is a liberal cafeteria Catholic and so is her mom. She rejects the Church’s teaching on sexual morality.

I tend to agree with this stand point. I feel that her open and blatant disrespect for the Sacraments and Church teaching is tragic and should not be condoned. So, I guess, personally, I would have to unRSVP too. Even if it is hard to do. I will tell my friend what I would personally do, but is she committing a sin of ‘omission’ (as a previous poster stated) if she does decide to attend?

If there is a required Confession prior to the wedding, would it be valid if the girl was openly and vocally not contrite? Also, I want to reiterate that this girl is very public and proud about her sexual relationship. My friend is not simply judging.

I think ByzCath would be more qualified to answer - but I believe she could make an imperfect confession here. Let’s face it - if the sin is premarital sex - well the situation will be rectified the next day. :wink: The reason I ask the other question about being open to life is that she still is called to chastity as a married person and if she is planning on contracepting, etc. than she wil be continuing to sin against chastity. However, that being said there is a point where if she is not being real vocal about it that it is none of our business. So if she is not openly running around saying - I’m having 2.3 kids and no more than we should be charitable and assume that she means her vows as we are also called to be charitable. :wink:

I do not know the subject of this thread but I am forming the impression that she is more concerned with her wedding that with marriage. She just seems to want her “big day” with all its trappings. I am not convinced she is marrying in the Catholic Church because she believes that is where she should marry as a Catholic but because it provides part of the “trappings”.

I tend to agree with those who have posted that there is a high likelihood that contraception will also be used after marriage.

I can also imagine some of the conversations this bride-to-be has had about the music and the readings for her wedding. I strongly suspect that sacred music and scripture readings weren’t her first choice.

What does the friend in question do? I think that I would not attend the wedding. This bride-to-be has vociferously expressed her opinions and has demonstrated a clear disregard for the teachings of the Church and for her friend’s beliefs.

I don’t know why she just doesn’t get a civil marriage. I have no doubt that some will criticise me for suggesting that there should be lack of canonical form. But, why get married in the Catholic Church if you choose not to follow her teachings or just to cherry pick those you find convenient.

I can see down the road how this may end in civil divorce down the road. Pessimistic I know but I haven’t read anything on this thread to give me any optimism. I might suggest there would at that time be grounds to be brought to a diocesan tribunal. But, having read what I’ve read so far I don’t think she’d seek an annulment to get married again.

Doing the right thing and not wanting to damage the friendship may not be compatible in this situation, because doing the right thing, which would be to approach the bride with more information on mortal sin and receiving communion, may very well cause discord in the friendship. Even if this bride is just proclaiming her sexual acts and bowing to friends pressure and not actually doing the deed, as some have suggested, that would be a sin as well I would think. She would be creating a situation that could lead other Catholics to sin themselves while also potentially damaging her reputation and her intended’s reputation as well.

If it was me, I’d talk to my priest and if possible, talk to the priest that will be officiating at the wedding, if its not the same priest,and tell him I have concerns about participating in the wedding party. I would approach the bride, in as charitable way and as privately as possible and inform her that she is on a very dangerous path and how I am concerned for her welfare and being in a state of grace on her wedding day and for the many days after. I would probably say something like don’t you want to start out your marriage life on the right foot in God’s eyes? So you’ve been vocal about not agreeing with the Church on some things, but this is a whole new chapter and you have time to right your ways.

Continuing to be a part of this wedding, for me, would depend upon what the priest advised, and how the bride responded after the talk.

Too many people now are looking at “correcting people lovingly” and preaching about the best ways to be more moral while they ignore their own faults and failings. I am NOT trying to insult you or your friend, but let’s remember that.

Since you and your friend seem determined to say something, I’d tread very carefully so you don’t sound self-righteous, overly judgmental, or anything else like that. No one likes to be reprimanded or preached to.

And remember-you and your friend don’t know what’s best for her, your not her or her fiancee-so be careful.

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