Can interfaith marriage work?


I need to hear from people out there who have a marriage good or bad where one partner is catholic and the other is not.
I have been with my husband 13 years and abandoned my Catholic faith to marry him. ( to be fair I was not practicing at the time). I just left our “christian” church and returned to my Catholic faith. This has caused turmoil and while I am open minded to raise my son in both traditions, My husband is unwilling to let me share my catholic faith with our son fully.
I love my husband and want to stay married. Am I selfish to answer to my own spiritual calling after all these years and change my mind about my faith? Am I a bad Catholic not to insist I raise my son that way?


My marriage began as an interfaith marriage and was for many years. After a couple years, I left the Church to attend my husband’s denomination. Several years later, I returned to the Catholic Church and my husband later converted. Yes, interfaith marriage can work, but it’s much harder than I believed when we first married.

Keep the focus on what you share in common: faith in Christ. You are not selfish to follow Christ where He leads you, (even if it causes turmoil as He leads you back to the Catholic Church.) Stay close to Christ in prayer and in the Sacraments. Find a good confessor to help with reconciliation in your life. Pray for and pray with your husband and son. Share your faith by living your faith, but don’t be afraid to speak the truth in love. Charity is of prime importance in discussions with your husband on your faith.

I don’t know what to say about your husband forbidding you to discuss your faith fully with your son, but perhaps that will improve with time. Right now, your husband is probably dealing with a bit of shock at your return to the Catholic Church. You both have some things to work out, but remember Rome wasn’t built in a day.

God bless you, and welcome back to the Catholic Church.


Thank you for your reply to my post. I know things will get worse before they get better but it helps to be reminded to try to do what I need to do in the spirit of Love and Faith.


Well we have been married 37, almost 38 years. He was Polish National Catholic, and I was Southern Baptist. Now we are Ruthenian Byzantine - have been for 27 years - serving in a Melkite Greek Catholic Church. Don’t you just love God’s sence of humor :rotfl:He was ordained to the diaconate 3 years ago.

So yeah it works, but it sure ain’t easy. Kind of like that old song, ‘he ain’t heavy he’s my brother’. When all is said and done though married in Christ, perserverence in faith of reaching the final goal which is Jesus Christ.

Maybe go to EWTN and search Journey Home. There are some awesome testimonies on there, and maybe a good show you could start watching on Mondays that will catch his attention.


well, I haven’t been married for very long, so my post might not hold that much weight in your eyes. been married almost 2 years.

what I have tried to do is just stick to the truth and not compramize on anything because I believe that God will reward my marrage if I do my very best to fallow Him.

there are things in the Catholic Church that my husband has a serious problem with. however, once he realized that we aren’t worshiping dead people (especially Mary), that we don’t have to give the church a bunch of money to get our family out of purgatory, and that we (unlike a lot of protestants) don’t believe that all you have to do is say the sinner’s prayer and poof, you are saved for eturnity (thank God he doesn’t believe in that) he became a lot more comfortable with the church. he asks questions and I just answer. I’ve heard him say to other people, “there’s a lot of stuff about her church that I don’t get or don’t agree with, but her faith is why I love her.” he admires my unwillingness to bend on this issue. I try to never make excuses to miss mass and try to let him see how fired up I am about church

I hope he’ll convert some day, but I didn’t marry him under the condition that he would and he didn’t marry me under the condition that I leave the church. he agreed to raise our children catholic and for that I am thankful.

so my advice is to be strong in your faith and show him how much the Catholic church helps you love him even more. try to show him that being catholic makes you a better mother and wife because of the sacraments. my husband actually likes it that I go to confession. he says I’m nicer because I have to keep track of the times I’m mean or do something wrong and it helps keep me in check :slight_smile:


"I have been with my husband 13 years and abandoned my Catholic faith to marry him."
Welcome home to the Church. One thing I would encourage is that the faith of your child is not a subject that you can make on your own. Obviously the marriage began on the premise that the children would NOT be Catholic. It seems unfair that you now get to change that agreement. My own wife of 13 years wanted to do that in 2002 when the priest and altar boy scandals really heated up. I was adamant that WE decided they would be Catholic and WE would have to agree to change that decision. I think it is only logical for you as well. You certainly have the right to share what you believe with your son but don’t try to make him both because it is hard on them We have tried that too and it is a HUGE time committment. Live your faith sincerely, share when the opportunity arises and pray for them both. Hopefully, by example you will attracxt both of them to seek RCIA.


I have been with my BF for almost 9 years. Although our journey hasn’t been without “difficulties”, as he is SDA and I am Catholic, We have learned that our love for each other and the Lord, helps us over the rough spots. This past summer, he was a “witness” at my 7 y/o grand daughter’s Baptism. Oh, don’t get me wrong, we do have some rather “spirited” discussions, but we have agreed to disagree. And just today, when I accompanied him to his church, the “sermon” was centered around Maximillian Kolbe ! Go figure! A Catholic priest being the center of attention at an SDA church! Cool huh?
So, just remember, relationships are work. But good ones are worth it!


Can you get your husband to listen to some of the old Catholic Answers Live shows- the “Tough questions from Non-Catholics”? They are easy to download. Maybe they would help with some conerns he has about the faith.
My sister’s husband is jewish. She converted, as they agreed it would be confusing for the children (they later had 2) to be raised with both beliefs, and at the time my sister was struggling with faith concepts. I have to tell you, it has been very difficult for my sister, not at first, but through the years.
Both of you are in my prayers.


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