Catholic Mariage allowed in Church without the guy converting? India?


Hi All,
I am a **Roman Catholic Syrian **girl belonging to Kerala, India.
I am currently involved in a relation with a **Bengali hindu **guy
from Delhi since 3 years.We love each other a lot and want to get married.

We have a major problem in getting married as my side parents will not
co-operate/support if we dont get married in the church…They are not forcing him to continue as a christian later…
I have a younger sister coz of whom my parents want my marriage to be conducted in a church to avoid any problems
in her marriage later.Otherwise my family likes him as a person.

His dad is no more and his mom is staying with him…so he cant leave his mom or think of a marrige without
her consent…cos he cant leave his mom alone…and his mom is not happy in allowing him to marry in a church.
and also little bit unhappy thinking i am forcing him to be a christian.

His family do not want him to convert to christianity
and are ok with my remaining christian after marriage, and so I do not need to convert to hinduism.
Iam a religious person and so is he …but we both are not very adamant in converting the other person.
We have agreed upon both of us continuing in the respective religions.

I am also willing to get married in Bengali hindu way, and ready to
do any pooja’s as per their process for marriage.( conversion/rejection/sin in my religion)

But as far as i know he has to convert to christianity
so tht church agrees to conduct our marriage. I personnaly feel bad
to ask him to convert to christianity and continue in tht.
He is strictly not ready to convert. In this situation, can please
someone help me out…has anyone before had a similar situation ?
Does anyone know any churches in Banglore/any other city who had
conducted christian marriage without the guy geting converted?

i believe he guy will have to get baptised to get the permision
from the church for a marrige in any Roman Catholic church…and my boyfriend is not willing to
do that saying he will loose his identity…Am i wrong in asking him to
get baptised to marry me?(baptism means getting enlisted as christian in a church and that amounts
to conversion in indian/hindu law?? or if a guy gets baptised, is he converting to christianity?)
But later follow his own religion as even i am
not particular in him continuing christianity after geting baptised
for marrige. I am also willing to get married in Bengali hindu way, and ready to
do any pooja’s as per their process for marriage.I may also be rejected
from my caste but i believe if we marry in both ways, we will be accepted
in the society.

Please help me regarding this


It is not necessary that your boyfriend convert to Catholicism for the Church to approve of your marriage. You must however obtain a “dispensation from disparity of cult” from your local bishop, otherwise your marriage will be invalid. You will also be obliged to raise your children as Catholics.


But is dispensation from disparity of cult valid in india? How do i get it? what is the procees?


It is valid in all the Church. You will need to telephone or get in contact with your local bishop. Usually they have someone dedicated to marriage issues like these.


thanks a lot. Its of great value to me,:slight_smile:


You don’t even need to call the bishop (not that you would get the bishop directly anyway). You talk with your priest, frist. He will have the necessary paperwork you need. If you haven’t consulted your priest yet, do so as soon as possible. He is the one in charge of the whole thing- even in India. So, make an appointment to speak with your priest as a couple- today.


It is not necessary by Catholic law for your fiance to convert to Catholicism in order for you to be married validly in the Church.

Far more alarming is your willingness to convert to his religion without any thought or consideration other than pleasing his mother. That is not the way to make decisions that affect your happiness in this life and your eternal salvation.

Your priority is becoming firm in your own faith. Until you know what you believe and how you order your life–to Christ as God commanded, or rejecting God, that is your choice–you are not ready for marriage. If you cannot commit to God you cannot comit to another person.


I agree with Annie, if you are THIS ‘easy’ with converting to his religion, how on earth are you going to keep your promise to raise your children Catholic? And is mother-in-law going to butt in there as well? Sounds like a disaster waiting to happen…


Please, think about how sad it will be to have a husband who does not share with you the most important thing there is: Faith.


Annie and Anna,

Call me crazy but I didn’t get that out of her post. I think she said she would be willing to marry in his tradition for the sake of community harmony but she is staying a Christian. She is not adamant about converting HIM.

His family do not want him to convert to christianity and are ok with my remaining christian after marriage, and so I do not need to convert to hinduism. I am a religious person and so is he …but we both are not very adamant in converting the other person. We have agreed upon both of us continuing in the respective religions.

It sounds as if she wants to know if “fake conversion” is acceptable for the sake of ceremony, both on her side and his.

Let’s give her a break because she obviously is not too familiar with Church Law and this is India. If you have been reading the news lately, violence against Christians is a real problem. Trying to consider all legitimate possibilities is a prudent decision.

I think explaining to the Mother-in-Law what “dispensation from disparity of cult” means and that her son is not converting by marrying in a Catholic Church, should solve a lot of problems.:thumbsup:


Hi All,
I tried talking to the priest…at bangalore and also in kerala.
It seems the syrian catholic proests are not ready to conduct our marriage in church if the guy is not baptised.

Meanwhile my parents also want him to baptise and marry me i the church.After our marriage noone is going to force him to follow christianity…He is free to follow what he likes…

But he is not willing to get baptised and marry me…sayin he will loose his identity,

We donot have any other options and so have decided to part with each other.

I still dodnt know if me asking him to baptise jsut to marry me is such a big crime…i dodnt have any other options with me,…

Thanks for allyour help and hope some day the church gets a ltiile more lenient in their rules of marriage,


Prac, get in touch with your bishop’s office. A marriage in the Catholic Church does not require that both parties be Catholic – only one. Don’t give up just because a couple of priests are mistaken; remember, they’re human too, and don’t know everything :wink: The bishop should know better.

As for asking your fiance to get baptized out of convenience would be a serious mistake. Baptism is a serious step, more so for adults than for infants in my non-Catholic opinion (nobody asked me if I wanted to get splashed with cold water twelve days after I was born!). It’s initiation into the Church, and doing that under false pretenses is disrespectful to both your faith and that of your fiance. But that’s not required for you to marry!

This is the relevant section of the Church’s Code of Canon Law.

Can. 1125 The local ordinary can grant a permission of this kind [marriage between a Catholic and a non-Catholic] if there is a just and reasonable cause. He is not to grant it unless the following conditions have been fulfilled:

1/ the Catholic party is to declare that he or she is prepared to remove dangers of defecting from the faith and is to make a sincere promise to do all in his or her power so that all offspring are baptized and brought up in the Catholic Church;

2/ the other party is to be informed at an appropriate time about the promises which the Catholic party is to make, in such a way that it is certain that he or she is truly aware of the promise and obligation of the Catholic party;

3/ both parties are to be instructed about the purposes and essential properties of marriage which neither of the contracting parties is to exclude.

Can. 1126 It is for the conference of bishops to establish the method in which these declarations and promises, which are always required, must be made and to define the manner in which they are to be established in the external forum and the non-Catholic party informed about them.

Basically, you need to promise to remain Catholic (which you obviously already intend), to do your best to raise any kids in the Church, your fiance needs to be aware of this, and you have to go through a bit of marriage preparation just like any other couple marrying in the Church. Don’t give up just yet, and best of luck! :slight_smile:


Mirdath, It is not a guarantee that a dispensation for disparity of cult will be granted. In many countries they are NOT granted because of the serious concern that the Christian will not be able to practice their religion.

The US treats mixed marriages pretty lightly-- way too lightly-- but not so in other parts of the world where Christian persecution is very real and disparity of cult marriages are a threat to the Catholic’s practice of religion.

It may very well be that in India the bishops do not grant disparity of cult dispensations, or do so very rarely. I know that they have had many issues in India with mixed marriages where the woman is Christian and the man is not, especially to Muslims, and I have seen some news articles on the subject. It wouldn’t surprise me if she is told “no”, she cannot marry a non-Christian.


No, it’s not a guarantee, but it’s not flat-out impossible, as Prac seems to have been told.


Should your vocation be marriage, may you find a good Catholic man is my prayer!


Oh Please…!!sharing a common faith is not the foundation of any marriage,its trust and love…I wouldnt mind if i get married to a guy of any cast…as far as he can respect my religion i will be fine with it…thanks for the prayers…
I will surely try my best…after all its my life ahead…


You are quite mistaken.

The Church does teach us the purpose of Marriage is the mutual work of the spouses for the Kingdom of God through the begetting and raising of children in the Faith. The foundation of a holy marriage absolutely is common faith.

Perhaps you should talk more to your parents on this subject and speak to your priest. You are not clear on the what the Church teaches regarding Marriage.

These elements are important, but secondary to Faith.

Cast and religion are not the same thing. No one has stated anything about cast.

Again, seek guidance from your parents and your priest. You seem to understimate the role that Faith plays in a marriage.


You might consider the teaching of the Church on marriage. The Catechism can be read on line here

Marriage begins at 1601

1601 “The matrimonial covenant, by which a man and a woman establish between themselves a partnership of the whole of life, is by its nature ordered toward the good of the spouses and the procreation and education of offspring; this covenant between baptized persons has been raised by Christ the Lord to the dignity of a sacrament.”


Hi, This might be a completely irrelevant thing to you now. It so happens that I was looking for the same thing that you have mentioned in the catholic forum and I am in the same hard waters. I completely appreciate the situation you are in. I hope you have found a solution and not given up. Please do reply me so we can find a way to discuss this, as I now know a Catholic priest from Kerala who can conduct this marriage for you. My story is more complicated as I am protestant. Neither I want to convert nor I want him to for me. We just want to save our own beliefs and live our life with each other. I desperately hope you can contact me on this.

Best to you…


Thanks for the reply. It has still not worked out for us. I am still in the same state as before…or maybe worser :frowning: . Please let me know the details. Or please mail me in


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