Are we wrong?


#1

My fiance and I are trying to decide whether or not to invite her father to our wedding. It is a long story. Basically he has never supported our relationship, when she told him she was engaged he didnt make any indication that he cared at all. They had a big falling out about 1 year ago over her becoming Catholic and they have just recenly started talking again.

Anyways he is a big evangelist and thinks terrible terrible things about the Catholic Church. I think we have pretty much decided we don’t want to invite him because we are both sure that this many Catholics in one place at one time will be too much for him to pass and stop himself from preaching and handing out very anit-Catholic tracts. The problem is they are talking again and are on good terms, or better terms for that matter. We want to tell him without losing what we have worked so hard to get to where we are at now.

We asked if he could not, for one day, preach and just go and enjoy his daughters wedding. He answered with, “I don’t know what two people who claim to be Christian would have against someone discussing the Gospels at their wedding”

I don’t know. Are we wrong for not wanting to invite him?


#2

Hi,

this is a tough one, and obviously I don’t know the whole story. My gut instict tells me you should invite him, or you’ll probably regret it later. Besides, this will harm the just getting better relationship, too, if he’s excluded. he might think you as Catholics have something to hide and start attacking you even more. On the other hand, you have to tell him that this is YOUR wedding, and not a forum for religious debate. Tell him he can preach about his beliefs at his parties, but not on your special day, please! And it has nothing to do with being Christian and avoiding these talks. It’s your wedding and should be celebrated just as such, not an evangelical argument. We all agree that we love Jesus Christ very much, make that clear to him. Call upon his love for his daughter, and how to not upset her on this special day. tell him you will pray for him and he can do the same for you guys, but not out loud so it ends in an argument at your wedding. My thoughts and prayers are with, you will make the right decision, I’m sure. May God bless you!


#3

I can understand your not wanting to invite him and given the info you did, I would not. That being said, however, he is her father. If you don’t invite him, it may come back to haunt you. If you DO invite him, make sure he knows in NO UNCERTAIN terms what will and won’t be tolerated. Don’t be afraid to lay down the law and then stick by it.

               Kathy

#4

we had a similar situation, huge opposition from one set of parents, to an extent I don’t even want to report they did everything in their power to break us up. Took the wise advice of the other set of parents: invite them, involve them, act as if there is no disagreement, invite them to future events like baptisms etc. Sure enough once the first grandchild arrived they came around. a huge rupture in the family was avoided and today we are friends (of course that took 40 years).


#5

Since this is the bride’s father, he has an irreplaceable role in your wedding. And whether you like it or not, he will be an important part of your life for a long, long time. He is the future grandfather of your future children. First, don’t worry. The momentum of the wedding day will carry itself, your future FIL cannot single-handedly ruin a wedding. In fact, having him in a Catholic Church, surrounded by the prayers of everyone present and the grace of the sacraments will do this man some good.

Stay upbeat and completely non-confrontational. In a loving note from your fiance’ let her respectfully ask him to please pray about your wedding and how he should act. Let her remind her father that he is a host of all of the guests. That this is a big day for him too. Remind him that everyone in attendance is a Christian. Also remind him that as far as we know, Jesus didn’t preach at the “Wedding at Cana,” Jesus behaved like an ordinary guest (remember, the miracle at the end of the reception there was his first sign). Ask him if he’d like some information on the Mass so that he can follow the ceremony. Would he be willing to kneel when the congregation does? Will he understand not to receive communion?

Also, it wouldn’t hurt to warn your close friends and members of your family about this man’s penchant for evangelizing. This way, they can have a polite reply ready for when he gets going, or they will know that it’s okay to excuse themselves from the conversation to get a second piece of wedding cake. Pray for your father in law. It sounds like he has a lot of pride and some control issues. Moreoever, having his daughter convert probably broke his heart. You will never regret going out of your way to honor and respect this man. You will demonstrate your love for your future wife by doing so. By the way, where is the bride’s mother?


#6

You have to invite him. He is the father of the bride & you really don’t want to burn any of the mended bridges.


#7

I would invite him just so you can put the ball in his court. If he doesn’t show up then you can say that you sent an invite and others will think he’s the jerk for not going to his daughter’s wedding. On the other hand if he does show up, well, good luck with that one.


#8

Hire a good Catholic apologist to tie him up for the whole day. Other than that I don’t know what to say. Congratulations & I’ll put you two in my prayers.


#9

I agree with cupofkindness, go out of your way to honor him on that day, and publicly show your love and respect for him as your father. St. Paul would call these heaping coals upon his head. You simply cannot keep your parents away from your wedding. Even if he gets out of line, he cannot ruin the wedding, everybody in the family knows him and knows how to take what he says and does.


#10

Invite him. As other posters have said, lay down the law first. A wedding is not the place for his antics. Ask a good friend to keep an eye on him and distract him if need be.

Not inviting him would give him ‘ammunition’ - how un-Christian not to invite your own father. --KCT


#11

Technically you can invite anybody you want, so you are not “wrong.”

That said, I tend to side with going ahead and inviting him. If somebody handed me anti-Catholic literature at a wedding I’d just smile and take it. In fact, I might just engage them in a discussion. Maybe you need to invite me, too – I’ll run interference for you. :stuck_out_tongue:

Alan


#12

I’d invite him. I think long-term it would do more harm than good to not invite him.

I’d discuss that the day is a celebration of love, not a debate of theology. Don’t debate him on the why’s and wherefore’s. Just state your terms, and when he responds back with something like you wrote above, just say, “Dad, please respect our wishes.” Just keep saying that over and over.

Next, employ the help of a good friend or relative to be his shadow and squash any over-the-top behavior.

Other than that-- just go with the flow. Honestly, the whole day flies by so fast, and you are so busy hugging on people, taking pictures, eating, dancing, etc, that it won’t matter WHAT he says or does.

DH and I just got married in August, and we were oblivious to any and all drama-- if there was any-- we just had a blast doing our thing and being in the moment.


#13

probably planning your wedding will be really stressful, and make you feel at your wit’s end no matter what you decide to do. So i’d say just invite him. It’s only one day, and if nothing else, for the rest of your life you’ll know you tried your best to be the “bigger man.” But hey, there’s also the chance he might be moved by the ceremony and re-evaulate his actions. unless your priest is planning to deliver a sermon on the immaculate conception, there’s a good chance he’ll see that Catholics have more in common with other Christians than he realized.


#14

Thanks everyone for your advice. I will have her read all these replies and let her think about. Maybe she will get enough strength to ask him if he even wants to be part of it or not this next weekend. One more thing is I havent seen this man in two years, since she told him she was converting. Even now that they are talking, I am not allowed in their house and he doesnt want to go out to dinner with her if I would be there. So I don’t know how well I would be with telling him what to do since I don’t know him anymore. Thanks again.

God bless


#15

[quote=Roman_Catholic]Thanks everyone for your advice. I will have her read all these replies and let her think about. Maybe she will get enough strength to ask him if he even wants to be part of it or not this next weekend. One more thing is I havent seen this man in two years, since she told him she was converting. Even now that they are talking, I am not allowed in their house and he doesnt want to go out to dinner with her if I would be there. So I don’t know how well I would be with telling him what to do since I don’t know him anymore. Thanks again.

God bless
[/quote]

On second thought, I’m not so sure I agree with my first assessment. The man is against her religion and her marriage, and sounds like he has no ideas about changing his minds any time soon. He is either going to gain a son or lose a daughter, and it sound like he’s probably opting for the latter while “wishful thinking” hoping she will still leave you.

Sorry, but she’s old enough to decide on her faith and on her religion. It sounds like he wants to break you two up and after rereading your OP, I wonder if he fulling intends to see that the wedding is a fiasco. Of course, asking him a question like that could have caused him to be a bit defensive, but it sounds pretty ominous.

If they reject you, they’ve rejected her. At least once you two are married that’s the way it will be.

Alan


#16

In spite of these terrible obstacles, I still would take the high road and invite him. That way, you’ve done your duty and tried your best to include him. Plus, this gives God an opportunity to work with this relationship. If he refuses to come, then it’s his loss. However, since this is your bride’s father, I would let her make the final decision and stand by that decision 100%. Where is the bride’s mother and what is her opinion on all of this? Keep us posted!


#17

I had a brother and a sister I really did not want at my wedding. I really struggled with it because mom would behave badly if they were there. In the end, I invited mom, sister and brother…lo and behold, they answered my prayers and didn’t show up…mom behaved wonderfully because her co-conspirators weren’t there to ruin the day. But if it were my dad, I think I would have felt I had no choice but to invite him. In all honesty, if you are at all hesitant, discuss it with her mom and your pastor. My pastor was comical about it. He kept saying, “Mary, I can marry you two without your mom there” or he would say, “You know, we don’t have to do this on Saturday. We can have the wedding Wednesday before your mom gets here” In the end, I asked another sister who was coming to run interference for me. I know it is a hard situation, but in all likelyhood, her dad is not going to cause a public scene at your wedding so don’t worry. Besides, Catholic weddings don’t have that famous line, “If anyone here can show just cause why these two should not be joined…” That is taken care of before the wedding if your church posts banns… and even if they don’t…that is not part of the ceremony! Don’t worry, (yeah like that is gonna happen huh?) it is never as bad as our imagination makes it out to be. I would however address the fiance(you) not being “allowed” to accompany her to dad’s house now. She would have to say something like, dad, you have never given him a chance or Please don’t make me choose between my dad and my future husband, after the wedding there won’t be a choice. Good luck and many blessings to the two of you! Let us know how it goes!


#18

My father didn’t come to my wedding. He was invited, though.

You see, I wasn’t raised by my parents, but my maternal grandparents. I have always been very close to them, but my relationship with my father has been almost non-existant.

So, when we were making wedding plans, I decided that I was going to have my grandfather give me away. However, I told my father that he could have the traditional father-daughter dance at the reception. My father, who is extremely controlling, refused to come to the wedding-basically because we weren’t doing things his way.

Well, we decided that this was OUR WEDDING and not my father’s, and that we were going to do it the way we wanted it done. If my father didn’t like it, it was his loss.

We sent him an invitation, but he didn’t come. You’d think that wanting to see his only daughter get married would be above his own personal priorities, but it wasn’t.

To this day, I haven’t once regretted sticking to the decisions we made about our wedding.

I think, for you, you need to do what you think is best. This is your day, not your future father-in-law’s. Pray about it, seek some good advice from your priest, and then decide what is best to do. But don’t base your decision on what you’re afraid of. Base it on what you think is best for the two of you.

Scout :tiphat:


#19

However, since this is your bride’s father, I would let her make the final decision and stand by that decision 100%.

This is great advice and has been my intent all along. It has actually been me who has pushed her to consider including him and start talking to him again for that matter. For awhile, because of the things he said about me, my family and her, she wouldnt even consider it. So this is great advice and probably what I will do. Whatever she wants, she will get.

Where is the bride’s mother and what is her opinion on all of this?

They divorced along time ago, and gee I cant for the life of me understand why :rolleyes: . It wont be just my family, he has also alienated his own family because they got tired of his ‘holier than thou attitude’ so both families will be uncomfortable with him.


#20

So if you invite him and he says yes, go over to the apologetics or liturgy and sacraments sub-forum, ask if there is anyone in your area that might like to run interferance. Chances are he’d be more than happy to oblige him in talking Christianity.


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