Can I marry a Protestant and still receive communion?


I have a Protestant boyfriend. We’re in a serious relationship and we’re planning to take our relationship into marriage, sooner or later.
We are fine with our different religions, we respect each other’s belief. I don’t force him to be a Catholic, and he doesn’t force me to be a Protestant as well. Our families are also fine with this. Sometimes he accompanied me to a Catholic church, and I have no problems accompanying him to his Protestant church. But we still keep our own beliefs, not planning to change our religions.
He is a son of a Protestant priest. I understand that he must be wishing to be blessed by his father on his wedding day. So looks like we’re going to get married in a Protestant church.
But there’s this rule in his church, before getting married there, I need to get Protestant baptism, only for wedding purpose. The wedding itself will be blessed by both Protestant and Catholic priests. Many people say that we can ask for dispensation to marry in a Protestant church, as long as there’s a Catholic priest attending it. Then I still can live as a normal Catholic after marriage. (His father has lead several Catholic/Protestant weddings before in their church)
That’s what I heard from many people. I need to know how’s the real Catholic rule for this. If I do that, get Protestant baptism only for wedding purpose, then get married in a Protestant church (attended by a Catholic priest), can I still be a Catholic and receive communion on sunday mass?
how’s the right Catholic/Protestant marriage procedure?

please advice. thanks.


The being re-baptised thing is plain wrong and unacceptable for a practicing Catholic. Our creed states ‘we believe in ONE baptism’, which baptism you have received already. To go through any such ‘re’ baptism ceremony gives the lie to this part of your profession of faith.

And please don’t just think ‘oh, it would only be in order to get married, it doesn’t reflect what I really believe’. The Apostles and martyrs happily gave their lives rather than deny the smallest article of their faith, even by outward gesture.

They could easily have, for example, physically gone through the gesture of offering incense to a pagan god, but they knew that faith comprises how we act as well as what we interiorly believe. If they were willing to give their lives for it, how much less should we be willing to compromise when nothing nearly so important is at stake.

If this man you are planning on marrying truly respects your beliefs, he won’t insist on you being baptised. If he does, then he’s not the man for you or any Catholic girl to marry. There are plenty out there who wouldn’t insist on you denying your Catholic faith in this manner.


actually my boyfriend doesn’t insist on me being re-baptised. it’s the rule of his church, which he can’t fight as well. and moreover, in their opinions, it’s fine for my Catholic belief.

this is what i fear. i don’t fear him forcing me to change religion or not respecting my belief, because he won’t do that. his family won’t do that as well. i fear that the rules of Catholic church and his Protestant church can’t be compromised so that it will be fine for both beliefs. looks like we need to study much further about Catholic/Protestant marriage.

we haven’t really prepared our wedding, so we haven’t really asked anywhere about this. but we’ve had the commitment to spend the rest of our lives together someday, so sooner or later we will need to find out more about this matter.

LilyM, thanks for the response.
God bless you :slight_smile:


LilyM is right about our Profession of Faith(One Baptism).I’m sure you’re aware your children must be raised Catholic.Have you discussed these matters with your fiance?Have you asked his minister father to wave this(Baptism)rule?Have you discussed this with your Priest?If not,please do so.But back to your question.A Priest must be present,and yes you can recieve Holy Communion as long as the marridge is valid.Talk to your Priest.


There is nothing more important than God… and serving Him as He desires to be served…

A husband who does not know how to do that is a hindrance to you and your children’s salvation. He has not come to where he has to be yet.

But the way you are asking questions shows you need a deeper and stronger and more lively Faith.

Learn your Catholicism more deeply, for the sake of your future life. :slight_smile:

Try reading some of the writings below or listening to some sermons.

It is offensive to God to go through a baptism ceremony as if your own Catholic baptism were not His baptism. Offensive.

God is first, husband second… potential husband who does not understand how to serve God… far closer to last.

Honestly, the Church does not encourage mixed marriages for a reason. She only permits them at all to potentially save the people who engage in them – it is a great detriment towards your salvation.


i also think that we can only get One Baptism. Therefore I need to get opinions from other Catholics, either to support my thought, because my knowledge isn’t deep yet (I’ve just been baptised 2 years ago, never had any baptisms for any religions before), or to get a second opinion, that is if it’s possible in some way (to be re-baptised)

yes i will absolutely talk to my priest, just maybe not now, because we haven’t really started to prepare our wedding. so at the moment, i’m just gathering information from everywhere.
i’m sure (and hope) there must be a way, because there have been so many Catholic/Protestant marriages. we just need to study further on this.

thanks wardrandolph. God bless you :slight_smile:


yes Shin, i do need to learn my Catholicism much more deeply. i’m still like a little child in this, because i’ve just got my baptism 2 years ago.

so i’m glad i found this forum as well, it’s one way to help me getting stronger faith and knowledge.

thanks all :slight_smile:


teresa_mrg,38yrs. ago I married a wonderful young Lutheran girl,After 38 yrs. she started RCIA,not because I have been a wonderful example all these yrs.But because of prayer and Gods Grace,Amazing Grace!:smiley: May our Lord be with you.Listen to Him.


A Catholic may marry a validly baptized Christian in a Catholic ceremony, with permission for a mixed-marriage (depending on the diocese that permission may come from the pastor or the bishop).

A Catholic may marry a non-baptized person in a Catholic ceremony with a dispensation from the bishop for disparity of worship.

A Catholic may marry a validly baptized Christian in a non-Catholic Church with permission for a mixed-marriage and dispensation from the bishop for lack of canonical form.

A Catholic may marry a non-baptized person in a non-Catholic Church with dispensations for lack of canonical form and disparity of worship.

A Catholic priest need not be present at the non-Catholic ceremony. He may be there, he may even be able to participate in some way, but he doesn’t have to be for the marriage to be valid.

BUT, this Baptism in the other Church is totally contrary to Catholic doctrine. We recognize only one Baptism and you’ve already received it. What denomination/Church is it that requires you to be rebaptized in order to marry one of their members? I’ve never heard of any such requirement and we have many different Churches in our town where Catholics get married.


I’d hazard the guess that the other church doesn’t view it as a rebaptism but rather as the first instance of genuine baptism.

My advice: Refuse to be rebaptized on the grounds that you’ve already been baptized. Then, hold that ground.

– Mark L. Chance.


the title of your post and the real story in our post are two entirely different questions

the short answer to the title question is yes, a Catholic may marry a Protestant but must receive formal permission, called a dispensation to do so, and he will not get that permission unless he can show the marriage will not be a danger to his own faith, and promise to raise his children Catholic.

Then you get into the real story–accepting a new baptism, forbidden by canon law, in a new denomination, and you describe a family who is NOT accepting of your faith, but placing all kinds of demands on you that go against your religion.

what you propose is to formally abandon and reject your Catholic faith to marry this person, and you are “okay with it”. Why? You blow off the Faith your parents baptized you in, the Church founded by Jesus Christ for a mere human being? It sounds as if you have very little understanding of your Catholic Faith if you can leave so casually.

Please make an appointment today with your Catholic pastor to discuss your plans.

How can you possibly say your bf is “okay with” your faith if he is insisting you reject the one baptism in favor of a sham ceremony in his church, and furthermore that to act against your own faith?

Nobody is okay with any of this, and you need to speak to your priest.

Have you even discussed or thought of how you are going to raise your children?


Good advice, especially about seeking out a Catholic Priest that can help you sort out the various issues. That’s really the place to start…


What is it that drew you to the Catholic Church two years ago? I hope that now that you’ve been baptized you still think about what drew you to seek baptism in the first place, and what a gift you’ve received.

Think hard about those reasons. Because what you’re proposing – being baptized in another community – is a rejection of everything that drew you to the Church.

Think, too, about how you see your future. Do you want to have children? Can you visualize the day your child is baptized? Receives her First Communion? Do you think your Protestant husband is going to be supportive of raising your children in the Church? He doesn’t seem to respect your beliefs, so how will he help you pass your faith on to your children?


You said his father was a Protestant “Priest” they can’t be a Priest… but could be a minister I guess. What I didn’t see is what Protestant Church is he from? Lutherans and Anglicans / Episcopals call their Ministers Priests but neither have the “rule” you are talking about. 1 Baptism, not multiple. If he “respects” your beliefs as you said then he will not make you do this, in fact… you are the bride, you should pick the Church IMHO. I let my wife (we were both Protestant at the time and converted a few years ago).

As someone noted he must agree to raise his children Catholic, will he do that?



When you get baptized in a church, you become a member of that church. If you believe that the God they serve is the same as the God you serve as a Catholic, then what you commit to in that church is something you are bound to by your oath to God.

I’m with the many others who urge caution. I’m in a mixed marriage and it was not a problem until it came to raising kids. What church? You will be very challenged to raise them Catholic.

And rather than wait until the wedding is further along, I suggest that you decide if this is something you should even continue. It will be much harder down the road if you decide that this difference is significant. If you love God and the fullness of the Truth, it will be significant.

Bring this to your priest to know what the church teaches. Bring this to God and ask for His guidance so that you aren’t making an emotional decision that is contrary to God’s will.


I’ve also been wondering what denomination it is that requires a re-baptism. It doesn’t sound very mainstream… in any event, it’s a no-go for Catholics.

Is he Morman? That just popped into my head, although they don’t have priests persay. OK, I’ll stop playing the guessing game.


Hello teresa mrg…I don’t know much about Protestant religion, but don’t get rebaptized in another faith…We believe in one baptism…don’t do it…if he is respectful of your faith, get married in Catholic church…My mother remarried in a Lutheran church, and never went back to her Catholic faith…as a result, I grew up with no religion, no beliefs and it was detrimental…(she was angry at religion in general for her own life mistakes)…Good luck to you and God Bless you:)


thanks for the information, Phemie!
hmm… what denomination, i don’t know how to call it in English, it’s just one of the many Protestant denominations.
okay now that i’ve had more certainty that i can’t receive another baptism, then i should talk to him about this, and ask him to find out more in his own church whether i can skip the re-baptism. if it’s solved then no problem, if it’s not maybe we need to talk to both priests and find a way out


What will happen when it comes time to baptized your babies as Catholics?

Please, don’t think that “love will take care of all of it”. Read all the threads here of women who married non-Catholic men and end up so sad and lonely because they do not share faith.


mlchance, thanks for the advice. sure i much prefer to refuse any other baptisms. i’m just looking for information whether it’s possible, in case my bf’s church can’t allow marriage without Protestant baptism. if it’s really not possible in any way for Catholic belief, then we’ll surely talk about this further.

puzzleannie, i’m not okay at all with rejecting my Catholic beliefs. i’m just okay to follow his Protestant rules, AS LONG AS it won’t cause any problems with my Catholicism.
the problem is, i haven’t understood very deeply about Catholicism itself. that’s why i need to study further and gather information from anywhere.
and i guess my bf understands even less about Catholicism, he asks to follow their rules because he also thought it was okay for my Catholic belief. now that we know it’s really not okay, i’ll talk to him. from how i know him all this time, i think he will consider it for my own good as well, so we’ll try to solve this together.
about kids, we haven’t really talked about this, because we thought it was still a matter far in the future. and just like other Catholic/Protestant couples, there must be a way. but now i think we better begin to talk about this, discuss it with both Catholic and Protestant priests.

simon x, yes i’ll talk to him first then we’ll talk to our priests.

SuspiceMeDomine, same answer with the above 2. i think i’ll start discussing about children with him, and discuss this matter with both priests

jwashu, maybe not Protestant priest. sorry i don’t know what’s the exact English word for them. maybe Protestant minister as you said. well actually it was me who started this topic with him, and it was me who said “okay, i’m fine with marrying in his church, as long as everything’s fine for my Catholic belief”. i decided it because of his Protestant priest/minister father, his whole family are Protestants. besides none of my family members are Catholics, i’m the only Catholic in my family. most of my relatives are also Protestants. that’s why i made such decision. but if their rules are not right for my Catholicism, i’ll surely reject those ideas.

Orchanian, sure i’ll pray and ask God to give a way for us, and i’ll talk to my priest

armywife, i only know the indonesian name of his denomination, don’t know the english word for that. so, sorry i can’t tell you what denomination it is, but it’s just one of Protestant denominations.

dashso40, the problem is i’m the only Catholic in my family as well. but all my family, my bf and his family, are fine with my Catholic belief and they are also willing to find any ways so that my Catholic belief won’t be rejected with this marriage. about kids, i know maybe this is not right, so i won’t do it before talking to a priest first. but i have a thought, to let our kids learn about both beliefs themselves. we’ll take them to both churches, after all it’s not 100% different, both still believe in God and Jesus Christ. but we won’t give them babies baptisms, let them choose themselves when they’ve understood their own choices. but i’ll surely discuss it first with my priest. it’s just a thought for the moment.

kage_ar, if we can maybe we won’t give any babies baptisms to our kids, but we’ll still raise them in church. in fact, both churches. same explanation with the above. and it’s still a thought, which will surely be discussed further with our priests.

for all, thanks for the advice. well, yeah i’m the only Catholic in my family but i never mean to reject my belief in any ways. i’m still a little kid in Catholicism. that’s why i’m gathering information here to find a good way for both of us.
and yes, in the end, if there are really no way for both our beliefs to be together, then i’ll be really sad, but i’ll choose my belief, as nothing is more important than that. thanks all. God bless you :slight_smile:

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