Can a Catholic layman officiate at a civil wedding ceremony?


#1

My cousin asked me to officiate at a civil wedding ceremony. I can apply and receive authorization to perform civil ceremonies but I am a practicing Catholic. Is officiating at a civil ceremony wrong for a practicing Catholic?


#2

Assuming that the couple are either non-Catholics not bound by Catholic marital law or have the proper dispensation from their bishop to be married in a non-Catholic ritual; assuming that there are no obvious impediments to their marriage (e.g., previous marriage, close blood relationship); and assuming that the Catholic is authorized by the state to officiate at civil wedding ceremonies (e.g., judge, justice of the peace, other recognized officiant), yes, a Catholic could preside at a civil wedding ceremony.


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