Non-Catholics Marry - Then Convert to Catholic


#1

This is somewhat related to the message already on this board called “Deeming my Marriage a Catholic Union” but my situation is a little different.

Not currently being catholic, there is a lot I dont understand, so the more detail in your responses the better for me :slight_smile:

My fiance and I are to be married in Sep 06. We called the catholic church in our area and learned that we already missed the Sep 05 start date for the 9 month RCIA program. We are both Christian without any current affiliation. I was worried if we got married without being catholic we would not be able receive the sacrament of marriage. However, after calling the local parish, it seems like they have a process, I believe she called it “recon-validation?” where we can receive the marriage blessings once we become catholic and go through some sort of process.

Can someone help me understand that if we become catholic, and receive this “recon-validation” that its the same as if we were catholic when we originally got married?

Its unfortunate that we cant delay the wedding until we are catholic but we are at a point where we need to do so before the potential passing of certain key family members that we want to be a part of this experience.

Any help is very appreciated!

Thanks,

Brian


#2

If neither of you is a baptized Catholic I believe you can ask a Catholic priest or deacon to be there to witness your wedding vows (with his bishop’s approval), which would make your marriage sacramentally valid in the eyes of the Church. Talk to a priest about that possibility or what other options you might have. And God bless you as you both enter the Church! :smiley:


#3

As long as you have a Christian marriage, even outside the Catholic Church, it is considered by the Church as a valid sacrament. My husband and I got married in a Methodist church by an ordained minister and 7 years later I converted. My baptism and marriage were both valid when I came into the Church.


#4

Even if either or both of you are not baptized your marriage will be viewed as valid (provided neither of you have been married before) although not sacramental. Since you are not Catholic the laws of the Church that govern the form of marriage do not apply to you. So, you can be married by a justice of the peace or any qualified minister. Then, when you are brought into the Church your marriage will be convalidated…that is the Church will be recognizing what is already a valid marriage.


#5

But if they are both baptized, doesn’t it automatically become a sacrament once they become Catholic? Actually… my husband is not Catholic but I am under the understanding that our marriage is a sacrament, because we were both baptized Christians married in a Christian ceremony.


#6

I believe that if two baptized non-christians marry that marriage is sacramental, period. Whether they eventually become Catholic or not does not affect this. Marriage (along with baptism) is one of the sacraments that can be validly obtained “outside” the Catholic Church.

So, yes, your marriage is certainly valid AND sacramental because you and your husband are bothe baptized persons.


#7

[quote=Ham1]Even if either or both of you are not baptized your marriage will be viewed as valid (provided neither of you have been married before) although not sacramental. Since you are not Catholic the laws of the Church that govern the form of marriage do not apply to you. So, you can be married by a justice of the peace or any qualified minister. Then, when you are brought into the Church your marriage will be convalidated…that is the Church will be recognizing what is already a valid marriage.
[/quote]

So let me ask this …

We both have not been baptized. If we get married like this, then become baptized via catholic, then get our marriage convalidated, will it seemingly gain everything that we lost by not marrying catholic in the first place? I guess I am trying to understand what exactly the convalidation is … Pardon my ignorance, I have a long way to go to understand everything, still!

Is there any benfit to getting baptized, say at a methodist church, before getting married?


#8

Call the Catholic church in your area back.
Make an appointment to speak to the priest.
Bring any paperwork you and your fiance have which speak to your Christian backgrounds.
Since you both plan to become Catholic, this will be your parish one day. Might as well work with the priest now so he’ll be a part of your journey.


#9

[quote=fsutaylor31]So let me ask this …

We both have not been baptized. If we get married like this, then become baptized via catholic, then get our marriage convalidated, will it seemingly gain everything that we lost by not marrying catholic in the first place? I guess I am trying to understand what exactly the convalidation is … Pardon my ignorance, I have a long way to go to understand everything, still!

Is there any benfit to getting baptized, say at a methodist church, before getting married?
[/quote]

Were you planning on a church wedding or a civil ceremony? If you want a church wedding you will have to be baptized first. But, I don’t think any Protestant denomination would allow you to be baptized without any counseling or teaching about their faith. Better to have a civil ceremony and then go through RCIA. Your marriage will be legal, but non-sacramental. Then have your marriage convalidated before a priest or deacon. You need not have a big ceremony for the convalidation. My husband and I simply made our vows before a priest after a Sunday Vigil Mass (on a Saturday evening) with 2 witnesses present.


#10

At this point you know Jesus and to be married in a Protestant church would be wrong. Talk to a preist as you are in a bit of a pickle. See if you can catch up with the RCIA class or go through another process. There are exceptions!

One problem with the Catholic Church is RCIA class. One of the best things about the Catholic Church is the RCIA class. It’s a catch 22 in your case.

A civil wedding may be an option with a Catholic blessing later? I allways wanted to get married in Las Vegas at the Elvis Wedding Chapel. Now it’s too late, I’m Catholic. Of course, we could get re-married to each other there?:love: Another honeymoon? 2 weeks in Vegas? 2 weeks on a cruise? 2 weeks on a pilgramage? I might even ask the wife to go on the honeymoon too if she leaves me alone!:wink:

TALK TO A PREIST!


closed #11

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