Anti-Cathoic Family In-Law


#1

So the situation which is becoming more pressing is the woman I’m courting is also Catholic but her parents spew anti-Catholic sentiment. I want to try my hardest to make this not hurt us but I’m not sure how it will be resolved. The mother is really the one who goes out of the way to say hurtful things while I’ve never head it from the father besides him confessing that he does hold something against Catholics but he’s always been cordial with me.

So my question, if this courtship leads to engagement do I have an obligation to ask or not to ask for her father’s blessing? I had always visioned I would but to be truthful I probably wouldn’t even listen to the answer because it couldn’t change my mind.

Has anyone else dealt with such a situation based on your religion or perhaps ethnicity?

God Bless You


#2

You are not obligated to ask for her father’s blessing.


#3

Due to the family dynamics in my DW family, her parents were divorced, I didn’t ask her father for his blessing. I had always envisioned that I would talk to the father before I asked for a lady’s hand in marriage. My dw specifically asked that I didn’t talk to her father before hand, and I respected her wishes.


#4

I agree with the others who have said you do not have an obligation to ask for her parents’ blessing. I would, however, talk with her about the possibility of saying, with love, to her parents something like:
“I know that you want only the best for your daughter. I know that you love her. So do I. As her husband I plan on defending her, protecting her and treating her with the same love and respect the Jesus shows His Bride, The Holy Mother Church.”

That way when, later, you tell them that they will not be allowed in your home if they spew out anti-Catholic sentiments that hurt your wife and (future) children they will not be surprised and your wife will be on the same page.


#5

Agree - you are not obligated to do so, but it wouldn’t hurt out of respect to inform them of your wishes to marry her and let them know you will love, honor and protect her all the days of your life.

Let your good character show through in deeds and actions. Let those be your shield to your faith. No use arguing, defending, disagreeing, or discussing. By your actions and your deeds show them that you are a caring and loving person of all your neighbors and family whatever their faith. Hopefully, eventually, they will see your true character as a person and not judge you by faith.

Good luck.


#6

You are definatley in a precarious situation. I would in this case ask for the father’s blessing in this case. Though not expect it at all. If you get it great, you did show a great deal of respect and that should help out the family situation some. If he says “no” and this is a possibility, then when she does say “yes” it will be clear who is running the show. So either way there is a positive side to it. Either family relations will improve or indepence from the family (hers) will be necessary. This will accomplish one or the other.


#7

When your potential MIL snipes about Catholicism, have you responded to her? Have you said something like: “Gosh, you seem to have a painfully negative view of Catholicism. I would love it if you came to church with us; you might be pleasantly surprised.”

If that doesn’t work, and she still keeps sniping, take a firm stand – in a very gentle and quiet tone: “Mom (or whatever you call her), you have been saying hurtful things about my faith. Not only are they hurtful, but they are untrue. I doubt that you would you be this unfair to anything else you didn’t understand.”

Give her a copy of some popular book like Surprised by Truth.


#8

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.