Is it a sin to marry a non catholic?

My daughter is confused. The priest has told her she should not marry a noncatholic. I told her it is a sin per the catechism. She loves a Christian and has told him she will not marry him unless he is a Catholic. They have been dating for a year. He wants to marry her and has made his intentions known to his family and church friends. It is difficult, understandably to leave them behind if they no longer wish to socialize with him if he converts.

My daughter went on a weekend outing with her parish’s catholic woman. They told her she should love him for loves sake. Now my daughter is reevaluating everything and feels she has been controlling and may come off demanding. (This is not her personality, she is on fire for her faith).

Her boyfriend attended Communion Liberation while she was in Vermont working on her master’s. He is to attend RCIA. She does not want him going out of pressure. Her goal is that their children and they would live in the truth of the Catholic Faith.

Tonight after her weekend with the Catholic friends has left her lost, doubting herself. I know she would be engaged and married to this man now if he were catholic.

My advice to her is to go to Mother Mary and pray. I pray and go to daily mass frequently asking for assistance. Is there something more I can do or say to comfort her.

They have known each other for 8 years, they have much in common and do love each other.

Thank you very much.


Strictly speaking, no it is not a sin. However it is something that should be done cautiously. As the Canon Law Society of America’s Commentary describes the canons on Mixed Marriage:

The [1983] code no longer categorizes mixed religion as an impediment and requires not a dispensation but a permission before a mixed marriage is contracted. Unlike dispensations, permissions are not viewed negatively by the law. Elsewhere in the code, permissions are required for activities that the legislator views favorably but that entail certain inherent risks. The requirement of prior permission is an attempt to ensure that these risks are removed or at least minimized before the faithful engage in the activity in question.

The Church wants to ensure that the Catholic spouse will remain Catholic and will do his/her best to raise children of the marriage as Catholics. The Church does not consider it a sin nor does the Church have a negative view of mix marriages. Whether or not your daughter wants to marry a non-Catholic is up to her.

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