I'm married in civil union; may I receive Holy Communion?

Hello, I recently travelled to South America to marry my long distance girlfriend so we can start a life together in Ireland and gain entry for her to the country. My parents who are also very devout, told me if I do get married that I wont be able receive the eucharist until we marry in a church. My mother asked our local (albeit very young) priest if I can receive or not and the priest told my mother as far as he was concerned I was able to receive the eucharist. I have not gone for communion since I have been married just incase. Can anyone tell me if I can or cannot receive the Eucharist once married outside of the church?


Dear friend,

Since the Catholic Church does not recognize as valid, marriages of Catholics outside of the Church, you may not have sexual relations without committing a mortal sin each time. So no, you may not receive the Eucharist until you are validly married. Now if you choose to be celibate until you are married in the Church, you may go to Confession and receive the Eucharist.

Fr. Vincent Serpa, O.P.

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