Dear Father Serpa,
For a question that was asked on April 13 about getting a marriage convalidated, you responded by saying “in order to receive Holy Communion in the future, you will need to live in a celibate way until your marriage is convalidated (blessed)”. I just recently converted and was confirmed into the Catholic Church. I sent my priest an e-mail weeks before April 7 about getting my husband’s and my marriage convalidated. I never heard back from him. I know he’s awfully busy, but I never bothered asking him again about having this done. Unfortunately in my case, my husband has never been baptized, and never attended church while growing up. When I read your response just now for the other letter, I became immediately concerned because I’ve been receiving Holy Communion since April 7. I live for Holy Communion. That is the highlight of my day. It brings me so much joy. I try to attend daily Mass whenever I get the opportunity. Because my husband has not been baptized, does this mean I may not receive Holy Communion again until he gets baptized? I’ve been praying very hard for his conversion, and he’s been 100% supportive in my decision to convert to the Catholic faith, but I don’t know when he might choose to convert himself. It depresses me to think I might not be able to receive communion again until he’s baptized. Is it a sin to receive communion without our marriage being convalidated? Please help me and pray for my dear husband’s conversion.
Dear Father Serpa,
Who said anything about conversion? Your husband doesn’t have to be a Catholic in order to be married in the Catholic Church. But until you ARE married in the Church (which is what having your marriage blessed, or convalidated, means) the Church considers that you a living intimately with someone to whom you are not married. Having such relations is a mortal sin. To be able to receive Holy Communion you need to go to Confession and then live in a celibate way in order to receive the Holy Communion the you live for. I understand that the priest was very busy, but your marriage should have been blessed when you were received into the Church. If the priest is too busy, find another parish. You are in my prayers.
Fr. Vincent Serpa, O.P.