Catholic Marriage Without Waiting Period


#1

Hello all,

I'm a first time poster, but have stumbled upon this site many times during my Googling.

Here it is: 3 weeks ago, I met the girl I'm supposed to spend the rest of eternity with. Plain and simple. [Please, whether or not you agree this is possible, is not the topic for conversation; the question stems from this *fact.]

I plan on being engaged in another 3 weeks or so (ring shopping is stressful). I want to be married shortly after that. I am a devout Catholic, but I simply will not wait 6 months to get married. That makes a US Catholic marriage unavailable to me. I still would really really like to have a Catholic marriage, and so we're looking abroad. Does anyone know of a country where a priest will marry two individuals who have only been engaged for a short period of time? *

If nothing international is available, I plan to throw myself at the mercy of the Cardinal or one of the other bishops in my diocese and hope that they will waive the waiting period. If that fails, I will likely have a legal ceremony followed by a religious ceremony. I realize that that conflicts with the Church, and I might have to resign from my duties as a lector and one of the Church leaders, but I have found the woman the Lord intends me to be with, and I will not wait an extra second to be with her.

Any input would be greatly appreciated. I'm sure some of you will read this and think "Shame on you for trying to circumvent the rules." Please, allow me to save you the time and energy of writing that---obviously, I just did. Also, some of you might kindly encourage me to a longer engagement. I appreciate your views and input, but that simply will not happen. I promise all of you that this is the truest of love meant to bind two souls for eternity. I will not let well-intentioned rules keep us apart.

Any help from you geniuses would be greatly greatly appreciated.

Edit: I should add, the future wife is on board with raising children Catholic, Mass on Sundays, and happy to convert. She comes from a background of weak religion, and is Methodist more by birth than anything else.*


#2

[quote="ThatGuy64, post:1, topic:290905"]
I will not let well-intentioned rules keep us apart.

Any help from you geniuses would be greatly greatly appreciated.

[/quote]

You have already stated your intentions as clearly as possible. Why do you want input from us geniuses?

Peace

Tim


#3

[quote="ThatGuy64, post:1, topic:290905"]
Hello all,

I'm a first time poster, but have stumbled upon this site many times during my Googling.

Here it is: 3 weeks ago, I met the girl I'm supposed to spend the rest of eternity with. Plain and simple. [Please, whether or not you agree this is possible, is not the topic for conversation; the question stems from this *fact

[/quote]

.]

I plan on being engaged in another 3 weeks or so (ring shopping is stressful). I want to be married shortly after that. I am a devout Catholic, but I simply will not wait 6 months to get married. That makes a US Catholic marriage unavailable to me. I still would really really like to have a Catholic marriage, and so we're looking abroad. Does anyone know of a country where a priest will marry two individuals who have only been engaged for a short period of time? *

If nothing international is available, I plan to throw myself at the mercy of the Cardinal or one of the other bishops in my diocese and hope that they will waive the waiting period. If that fails, I will likely have a legal ceremony followed by a religious ceremony. I realize that that conflicts with the Church, and I might have to resign from my duties as a lector and one of the Church leaders, but I have found the woman the Lord intends me to be with, and I will not wait an extra second to be with her.

Any input would be greatly appreciated. I'm sure some of you will read this and think "Shame on you for trying to circumvent the rules." Please, allow me to save you the time and energy of writing that---obviously, I just did. Also, some of you might kindly encourage me to a longer engagement. I appreciate your views and input, but that simply will not happen. I promise all of you that this is the truest of love meant to bind two souls for eternity. I will not let well-intentioned rules keep us apart.

Any help from you geniuses would be greatly greatly appreciated. *
The highlighted line makes me think you are a troll, nobody who was serious would be that rude, but on the off-chance that you might be legit, here's what I think.

While you may well have fallen in love so soon -- my husband of 37 years proposed two weeks after we met -- I think you are wrong in wanting to rush this.

Why? Because all you talk about is YOU and what YOU want. Not a mention that she feels the same way.

The very fact that you are planning to simply say to the Church, "Stick it," and go get a civil marriage rather than wait a measly 6 months shows that you are in no way mature enough to get married in the first place.


#4

I would suggest that you are not really that devout if you are so eager to willfully defy Church law (proximate preparation is universal law, not US only) and the collective wisdom and authority of the Church as it pertains to the oversight and administration of the sacraments.

Reflect on that.

First you need your pastor’s permission to marry outside his jurisdiction. Secondly, you must complete the premarital paperwork (freedom to marry) and typically do that in your home parish. Whatever other preparation may be required is at the discretion of your pastor. If you haven’t talked to him, do so.

You may certainly ask. Start with your pastor.

I hope your pastor will be able to counsel you on the folly of this plan.

Slow down and talk to your pastor.
[/quote]


#5

Hi Tim,

Well, I'm hoping that variations among the well-intentioned rules will allow for me to marry within the Church and fulfill my vocation to my future wife.

I'll toss out this example for you. I receive Communion on my knees directly on my tongue. You might be aware that this is technically not approved of by the US Catholic Bishops (although the priest cannot refuse an individual Communion in this manner). But on the other side of the coin, the Holy Father highly prefers to administer on the tongue with the communicant on his knees. It's troubling to me as a Catholic to see legitimate upsetness (yes, I invented a word) in a priest's eyes every time I drop to my knees for Communion, but having the Holy Father pushing for the Church to go in that direction. The US Bishops' directives are, in my opinion, somewhat incompatible with the Holy Father.

So, here too, I've found a rule of the US Catholic Bishops that I feel is prohibiting my exercise of my faith, and I'm trying to find a solution within the Church--perhaps beyond US borders. That's all.


#6

[quote="Phemie, post:3, topic:290905"]
The highlighted line makes me think you are a troll, nobody who was serious would be that rude, but on the off-chance that you might be legit, here's what I think.

While you may well have fallen in love so soon -- my husband of 37 years proposed two weeks after we met -- I think you are wrong in wanting to rush this.

Why? Because all you talk about is YOU and what YOU want. Not a mention that she feels the same way.

The very fact that you are planning to simply say to the Church, "Stick it," and go get a civil marriage rather than wait a measly 6 months shows that you are in no way mature enough to get married in the first place.

[/quote]

Sorry you feel that I was rude. I'm not a troll at all, and generally classified as a pretty nice guy. I refer to people as "rockstars" "champions" and other titles---like "geniuses"---regularly. It's simply part of my parlance, but I'm sorry if you find it offensive. I am the first to admit that I can be schooled by the very intelligent posters on this site. As I said, I've often found this place very helpful in my quest for Catholic answers, and I'm hoping it can serve the same purpose here.

My future wife is totally 110% on board. We are completely in sync on this issue, and so I simply used the word "I" instead of "we" for that reason.

Are you suggesting that you think you and your husband became engaged too early or too quickly? It seems to me you of all people would somewhat understand my position.


#7

[quote="ThatGuy64, post:5, topic:290905"]
Here too, I feel like a rule of US Bishops is somewhat contradictory, and I'm trying to find a solution within the Church. That's all.

[/quote]

I'm sorry, but you can be the best, most devout Catholic in the history of the Church, but, based on the statements you made in the first post, you are willing to marry outside the Church just to get your way. I, literally, cannot imagine having done that after I met the woman who would become my wife because I believe in the sacredness of marriage and the need for the graces that come from the sacrament. Your willingness to commit fornication because of your desires to bypass the Church's waiting period makes me wonder if you really understand what marriage really is.

And, by the way, your tone about the bishops says a lot about your attitude towards the Church.

Peace

Tim


#8

[quote="ThatGuy64, post:6, topic:290905"]
Sorry you feel that I was rude. I'm not a troll at all, and generally classified as a pretty nice guy. I refer to people as "rockstars" "champions" and other titles---like "geniuses"---regularly. It's simply part of my parlance, but I'm sorry if you find it offensive. I am the first to admit that I can be schooled by the very intelligent posters on this site. As I said, I've often found this place very helpful in my quest for Catholic answers, and I'm hoping it can serve the same purpose here.

My future wife is totally 110% on board. We are completely in sync on this issue, and so I simply used the word "I" instead of "we" for that reason.

Are you suggesting that you think you and your husband became engaged too early or too quickly? It seems to me you of all people would somewhat understand my position.

[/quote]

He proposed two weeks after we met and I told him I'd marry him. But we didn't make the engagement official for another 7 months and didn't marry until 3 years after we met.

No, we didn't simply move in together, in fact, we didn't live in the same town until after our wedding. We saw each other almost every day for 8 1/2 months and then he joined the military and I went to nursing school. Even if we'd been married and I had opted to not work outside the home, his military career would have dictated that we live apart for at least 18 months. It made no sense to get married before we could live together.

We knew that if what we had was the real thing it would easily survive being apart for what eventually turned out to be 27 months. In those 27 months we saw each other a grand total of 40 days and that includes the week before the wedding.


#9

Hey Tim,

Again, I value your input. Maybe I’m not being clear, but the whole point of me being here is to try and find a solution to marry within the Church. If the answer is “I know of no way that this can be done,” that would be really helpful to know. Armed with that knowledge, I can then reflect and pray with my future wife on what we believe is the appropriate course
of action. But so far, I’ve been simply lambasted for my feelings, which, again, is hard because I thought I could find loving support from my fellow Catholics.

As for my tone toward the US Conference of Bishops, I don’t know what to say. I’m troubled that we have a rule in the US that strongly prefers Communion in the hands while standing while the Holy Father is actively engaged in trying to move to a more traditional administration of the Blessed Sacrament. Perhaps I’m being overly sensitive, but I value the Holy Father’s opinions immensely.

Regardless, I appreciate your input.

God Bless


#10

Phemie,

Thanks for sharing your story! It’s good to get other perspectives, and that story of 40 days in 27 months is pretty incredible. Goes to show the power of true love.

In case I wasn’t clear, I’m not planning on living with my future wife until we’re married. Sorry if my earlier posts were ambiguous on that point.

I know my Grandparents (approaching 60 years of marriage) married within 6 months of meeting.


#11

[quote="ThatGuy64, post:9, topic:290905"]
the whole point of me being here is to try and find a solution to marry within the Church.

[/quote]

The solution is to start by making an appointment with your pastor.

[quote="ThatGuy64, post:9, topic:290905"]
If the answer is "I know of no way that this can be done," that would be really helpful to know.

[/quote]

The answer is that it is possible with the permission and cooperation of your pastor. So, again, make an appointment with your pastor. If your pastor advises that you will need to complete premarital preparation of X months, then you need to respect that.

An international destination is not going to give you the time of day unless you have already completed the premarital investigation with your pastor, and have permisison of your pastor to be married at that location. Further, you will also first need permission from your own bishop for mixed marriage.

So again, all roads lead to an appointment with, and following the directions of, your pastor.


#12

[quote="ThatGuy64, post:1, topic:290905"]
Hello all,

I'm a first time poster, but have stumbled upon this site many times during my Googling.

Here it is: 3 weeks ago, I met the girl I'm supposed to spend the rest of eternity with. Plain and simple. [Please, whether or not you agree this is possible, is not the topic for conversation; the question stems from this *fact

[/quote]

.]

I plan on being engaged in another 3 weeks or so (ring shopping is stressful). I want to be married shortly after that. I am a devout Catholic, but I simply will not wait 6 months to get married. That makes a US Catholic marriage unavailable to me. I still would really really like to have a Catholic marriage, and so we're looking abroad. Does anyone know of a country where a priest will marry two individuals who have only been engaged for a short period of time? *

If nothing international is available, I plan to throw myself at the mercy of the Cardinal or one of the other bishops in my diocese and hope that they will waive the waiting period. If that fails, I will likely have a legal ceremony followed by a religious ceremony. I realize that that conflicts with the Church, and I might have to resign from my duties as a lector and one of the Church leaders, but I have found the woman the Lord intends me to be with, and I will not wait an extra second to be with her.

Any input would be greatly appreciated. I'm sure some of you will read this and think "Shame on you for trying to circumvent the rules." Please, allow me to save you the time and energy of writing that---obviously, I just did. Also, some of you might kindly encourage me to a longer engagement. I appreciate your views and input, but that simply will not happen. I promise all of you that this is the truest of love meant to bind two souls for eternity. I will not let well-intentioned rules keep us apart.

Any help from you geniuses would be greatly greatly appreciated.

Edit: I should add, the future wife is on board with raising children Catholic, Mass on Sundays, and happy to convert. She comes from a background of weak religion, and is Methodist more by birth than anything else.*

My friend, there are many good reasons why there is a waiting period to get married in the Catholic Church, including the requirement to attend a marriage preparation seminar (such as Pre-Cana or Engaged Encounter) and meetings with your priest for counseling sessions on the meaning of marriage. Your parish might also require that you be a registered parishoner and and attend mass regularly.

The time allows for you to have some deep and important conversations with your future spouse about important topics such as money, children, and simply getting to know more about her. You may think you know "everything" about her but together you should explore some reading materials about Catholic marriage and family, the parish usually provides you a booklet such as "Together for life" or you can explore more intensive reading such as "Three to get married" by Fulton Sheen.

I got married last month to my husband which I've known for 4 years and I am still learning new things about him every day. We had a 1 year engagement. Marriage is not something to rush into, but with reflection and love.

I feel that your words indicate that you are blinded by your zeal to be married. Unless you have some special circumstance/emergency, there isn't a good reason not to wait. You said that you will consult with your Diocese, I pray that someone from that office can assist you in whatever your needs may be. I also pray that you do not make any rash decision to marry outside of the Church without permisson.


#13

Thank you for your input. I had planned to speak with my pastor eventually, but wanted to arm myself with as much knowledge as I could before my visit. This is helpful information. Again, many thanks.

God Bless


#14

I fear that my straight-forward approach to question asking may have screamed of troll. As I explained above, the question is sincere.

As I’ve said to the others, your input is very helpful. I’m not in a hurry to rush into something, but I will concede that I am excited and eager to move forward with my vocation.

All the best!


#15

First of all, as another poster mentioned, this is not a rule of the US Catholic bishops. This is universal law.
Second, the ability to recieve communion on the knees is also allowed in US law. In fact, the permission to stand was only granted on permission that those wanting to kneel would be allowed to. Watch this.
Third, you are sounding very protestant, accusing the “rules” of the faith hindering your exercise of the faith.


#16

I know of no way that this can be done, but you can always ask your pastor.

But so far, I’ve been simply lambasted for my feelings, which, again, is hard because I thought I could find loving support from my fellow Catholics.

I haven’t commented on your feelings, I have commented on your posts. You have claimed to be a devout Catholic and in the same post you state that you will do what you want regardless of what the Church says. That isn’t about feelings, my friend.

Perhaps I’m being overly sensitive, but I value the Holy Father’s opinions immensely.

The Holy Father would tell you to wait for marriage. As has been noted, that is a universal norm, not just a USCCB requirement. Since you now know that, are you still willing to leave the Church to marry?

Can. 1063 Pastors of souls are obliged to take care that their ecclesiastical community offers the Christian faithful the assistance by which the matrimonial state is preserved in a Christian spirit and advances in perfection. This assistance must be offered especially by:
2/ personal preparation to enter marriage, which disposes the spouses to the holiness and duties of their new state;

Peace

Tim


#17

Hello Brother,

I know that the waiting period is universal law, but the actual length of the waiting period is dictated by each diocese, so that's what I was trying to get at. I was simply wondering whether a shorter waiting period of, say, 2 months, would be available.

As to kneeling while receiving Communion. We can go back and forth on it a nauseum. I simply highlighted that issue to illustrate differences within the Church as a whole, and I was attempting to use that illustration as an example of differences I'm aware of in the Church that I was hoping might be present and relevant to my situation (i.e. a 2-month waiting period elsewhere).

As with everyone else, your thoughts (and maybe some prayers---please) are greatly appreciated.


#18

[quote="ThatGuy64, post:9, topic:290905"]

As for my tone toward the US Conference of Bishops, I don't know what to say. I'm troubled that we have a rule in the US that strongly prefers Communion in the hands while standing while the Holy Father is actively engaged in trying to move to a more traditional administration of the Blessed Sacrament. Perhaps I'm being overly sensitive, but I value the Holy Father's opinions immensely.

[/quote]

FYI, there is no rule against receiving Communion on the tongue in the U.S. Just becasue the "norm" is standing doesn't mean that kneeling is forbidden. The old GIRM states:

The norm for reception of Holy Communion in the dioceses of the United States is standing. Communicants should not be denied Holy Communion because they kneel. Rather, such instances should be addressed pastorally, by providing the faithful with proper catechesis on the reasons for this norm.

The new GIRM states:

The norm established for the Dioceses of the United States of America is that Holy Communion is to be received standing, unless an individual member of the faithful wishes to receive Communion while kneeling (Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, Instruction, Redemptionis Sacramentum, March 25, 2004, no. 91).

Note, they eliminated the language that gives the impression that kneeling was "forbidden". If anyone told you it was, they were misinformed.

As to the topic of the thread, I strongly encourage you to speak with your priest. I find it odd that your willing to jump on a plane and fly across the world but you don't want to wait six months. I know emotions can run high in the start of a relationship and those first few weeks can often make it seem like you've known the person for years, and the idea of waiting so long can seem agonizing. But six months is really not that long. It'll be here and gone before you know it. Unless you're going really low key, you generally need at least six months just to plan the wedding. :p


#19

[quote="Orogeny, post:16, topic:290905"]
I know of no way that this can be done, but you can always ask your pastor.I haven't commented on your feelings, I have commented on your posts. You have claimed to be a devout Catholic and in the same post you state that you will do what you want regardless of what the Church says. That isn't about feelings, my friend.The Holy Father would tell you to wait for marriage. As has been noted, that is a universal norm, not just a USCCB requirement. Since you now know that, are you still willing to leave the Church to marry?

Can. 1063 Pastors of souls are obliged to take care that their ecclesiastical community offers the Christian faithful the assistance by which the matrimonial state is preserved in a Christian spirit and advances in perfection. This assistance must be offered especially by:
2/ personal preparation to enter marriage, which disposes the spouses to the holiness and duties of their new state;

Peace

Tim

[/quote]

Tim,

Again, again, thank you, my friend. I just devoured, and thoroughly enjoyed, Matrimonia Mixta, which cited me to the appropriate Canons. I've been spending a good deal of time in front of the Blessed Sacrament lately. If nothing else, I can promise you that my decision will not be made lightly and without substantial reflection and prayer.


#20

And if not? Do you plan to stand by this statement:

I plan on being engaged in another 3 weeks or so (ring shopping is stressful). I want to be married shortly after that. I am a devout Catholic, but I simply will not wait 6 months to get married.

Do you get to decide what the “waiting period” is or does the Church?

Peace

Tim


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.