Agnostic marrying Catholic


#1

I have grown up as a Jehovah's Witness my entire life. I had never been interested in it and never got baptized. I met a guy and his family is Catholic. They do not go to church but they still identify with the religion. This guy I've been dating has talked about marriage and said that his mother wants him to be married in a Catholic church and if I were to marry him, I would need to convert.

Is this true? I've been trying to do research and I read somewhere that as long as one of us is a Catholic, it is okay to marry someone like me; but will the marriage be valid?


#2

I am not sure of the official stance, but an Atheist friend of mine recently married a Catholic woman in a Catholic church. I do not know what he told the priest in regards to his beliefs, but I know for a fact he was never baptised or confirmed as a Catholic.


#3

The marriage would be valid but not sacramental. Your husband would have the obligation to do everything in his power to raise children Catholic. I don't think you'd have any.
Of course, it is best to check with his parish priest about all this.


#4

[quote="qwerty1234, post:1, topic:226531"]
I have grown up as a Jehovah's Witness my entire life. I had never been interested in it and never got baptized. I met a guy and his family is Catholic. They do not go to church but they still identify with the religion. This guy I've been dating has talked about marriage and said that his mother wants him to be married in a Catholic church

[/quote]

It sounds like your boyfriend needs to decide if he is really going to practice his faith or not and talk to his local priest.

You do not just knock on the door of the church and demand to be married. One would be expected to actually attend Church and be living a life in keeping with the faith.

[quote="qwerty1234, post:1, topic:226531"]
and if I were to marry him, I would need to convert.

[/quote]

That is correct.

[quote="qwerty1234, post:1, topic:226531"]
Is this true? I've been trying to do research and I read somewhere that as long as one of us is a Catholic, it is okay to marry someone like me; but will the marriage be valid?

[/quote]

In order for a Catholic to marry an unbaptized person, the Catholic requires a dispensation from what is called disparity of cult.

The bishop gives the dispensation if the Catholic party demonstrates he/she will be able to freely practice their faith (again, another indication that the Catholic has an obligation to be practicing the faith when the ask for marriage from the Church), and also they must promise that they will raise their children in the Catholic faith.

You as a non-Catholic are informed of this promise and what it entails, but make no promise yourself.

The Catholic and non-Catholic fiance(e) would be expected to attend premarital preparation courses/sessions with the priest or however it is done locally.

I really encourage both you and he to explore the Catholic faith more seriously and make sure you and he both understand what you are undertaking by asking for marriage in the Church. Perhaps the local Catholic Church has some inquiry classes you and he could go to (RCIA). Doesn't sound like he had a solid upbringing in the faith if he and his family to not attend Mass.


#5

Wow, this reminds me so much of how my ex grew up JW & became Agnostic as much as I thought she believed in Jesus. We talked about marriage, but she refused to get baptized & it basically just didn't work out.


#6

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