Non-Catholic Etiquette


#1

Hi there everyone!

I was just wondering something, and I thought this would be a good place to ask it, although I’m not exactly sure that I’m in the right section of this forum.

My question is this: what, other than the Eucharist, are non-Catholics not allowed to do in a Catholic church? My understanding is that they are allowed to participate in the mass in every other way (except for responsibilities given to a priest, altar server, or reader), but, for instance, are they supposed to cross themselves with holy water upon entering the church? Are they allowed to go to confession? Can non-Catholics get married in a Catholic church?

These are really just out of curiosity, but if anyone could answer these questions for me, it would be greatly appreciated. Thanks, and God bless!

Drew


#2

Are they supposed to cross themselves with holy water upon entering the church?

They are not required to but may do so if they wish. It is done to remind us of our Baptismal promises.

Are they allowed to go to confession?
You know, I don’t know:o . I know for first communion, kids first go through classes for reconcilliation, but if a person just called up a priest and said I’m not Catholic, but I want to confess. Can they? I don’t know.

Can non-Catholics get married in a Catholic church?
Yes. My husband is a baptized Lutheran. We were married in a Catholic Church, promised to raise the kids Catholic, but there was no communion.


#3

Well! Good to know! Thank you, Maria!

Drew


#4

In response to your questions, "My question is this: what, other than the Eucharist, are non-Catholics not allowed to do in a Catholic church? My understanding is that they are allowed to participate in the mass in every other way (except for responsibilities given to a priest, altar server, or reader), but, for instance, are they supposed to cross themselves with holy water upon entering the church? Are they allowed to go to confession? Can non-Catholics get married in a Catholic church?
Anyone is able to attend the Mass and make the responses. However the sacraments cannot be received by someone who is not in “full communion” with the Catholic Church…ie, you are either baptised Catholic or become Catholic thru the profession of faith after a period of study, usually through the RCIA process (RCIA is the normal process for training potential converts who are adults prior to them coming into the Church)

Someone attending Mass can even come up during Communion and receive a blessing. However if you are not Catholic, you cannot receive the sacrament of Confession/Reconcillation. I believe you could meet with a priest as a “confessor” and tell of your sins, but absolution could not be given.

Yes, non-Catholics can be married in a Catholic Church, to a Catholic. However except in unusual circumstances, there would not be a Mass during the wedding if both parties were not Catholic. I am not sure of the instances when a Mass can be said during the wedding…maybe someone else could help us with that.

Use of the sacramentals (holy water, sign of the cross, etc) can be used by non-Catholics during the particular activity taking place that they may attend.

Hope this helps.

Bless you


#5

You are not allowed to go down to the basement afterwards for the special meeting and definately not to ask what the clicking and snapping noises down there are! :smiley:


#6

[quote=Inkman]You are not allowed to go down to the basement afterwards for the special meeting and definately not to ask what the clicking and snapping noises down there are! :smiley:
[/quote]

Clicking and snapping? :confused:


#7

They are allowed to participate in Confession, but the priest cannot offer them absolution. He may bless them after their repentance, pray with them, and offer cousel, but he cannot offer them absolution, as this is only for those who profess faith in the unified body of Christ.


#8

[quote=mercygate]Clicking and snapping? :confused:
[/quote]

Yeah, I don’t quite get that one myself.


#9

I have a non-Catholic friend who is married to a Catholic. I don’t think John has gone to his protestant Church in over 35 years. He is very active in our old parish i.e. usher, Holy Name Society, helps paint and clean. As far as I know he does not go to confession and he certainly does not receive Communion. We are praying that he will take the last few steps and convert.


#10

**Can. 844 **

**§3 Catholic ministers may lawfully administer the sacraments of penance, the Eucharist and anointing of the sick to members of the eastern Churches not in full communion with the catholic Church, if they spontaneously ask for them and are properly disposed. The same applies to members of other Churches which the Apostolic See judges to be in the same position as the aforesaid eastern Churches so far as the sacraments are concerned. **

**§4 If there is a danger of death or if, in the judgement of the diocesan Bishop or of the Episcopal Conference, there is some other grave and pressing need, catholic ministers may lawfully administer these same sacraments to other christians not in full communion with the catholic Church, who cannot approach a minister of their own community and who spontaneously ask for them, provided that they demonstrate the catholic faith in respect of these sacraments and are properly disposed. **


#11

When my protestant family members attend Mass with me (very seldom), I encourage them to come forward during communion and receive a blessing from the priest or deacon. In some parishes, you can simply put a finger over your lips to indicate you aren’t receiving the Blessed Sacrament; in others I believe you cross your arms over your chest, rather than extend your hands.

Tricia Frances


#12

[quote=mercygate]Clicking and snapping? :confused:
[/quote]

My post was to be a joke. If you can invision someone attending the Catholic church for the first time it must seem very strange compared to the other services they may have attended. Having said this, if there was a private meeting held in the basement afterwards, to which they were not permitted to attend with lots of really strange noises…well that was my joke. Maybe my wife is right, maybe I am just not funny.:smiley:


#13

[quote=Inkman]My post was to be a joke. If you can invision someone attending the Catholic church for the first time it must seem very strange compared to the other services they may have attended. Having said this, if there was a private meeting held in the basement afterwards, to which they were not permitted to attend with lots of really strange noises…well that was my joke. Maybe my wife is right, maybe I am just not funny.:smiley:
[/quote]

Not true … not true! I thought it was funny … I was chuckling before the next post was on my screen.

I KNOW some non-Catholics have some REALLY weird ideas about us, too.

btw … my wife says I’m not funny either. heh heh heh

michel


#14

Oh, but you two are funny! (Love the Profile Pic, Cazayoux!)

I invited a friend to attend mass with me a few weeks ago and although she was interested, she had to decline. I think I scared her when I remarked, “But Paige, you’re going to miss all the animal sacrifices! We do the chickens this Sunday!”

Am I not funny, too?

Peace,
Tricia


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.