Please help....

Hello All…First of all i am a non catholic/christian girl in love with a guy who is from the MALANKARA KNANAYA SYRIAN ORTHODOX COMMUNITY of Kerala.Both of us are very much in love and want to get married but his parents will never agree (my parents have no problem).We are both in a fix …can someone please tell me is there any way we two can get married, since we both belong to different religions???Can i convert into his religion??Is there a way we both can get married without hurting the sentiments of his church??Any help would be appreciated immensely.Thank you.

Marrying someone of a different faith is not advisable; it will cause many difficulties, including how you raise your children.

Converting to his branch of Christianity is certainly a possiblity. You could talk to a priest from his church to see what it would involve. But becoming a Christian is not a decision to be made lightly. If you convert to Christianity, it should be because you believe the gospel of Jesus Christ, and not just because you want to marry this man (although I sympathize with your situation). So take some time to learn about and understand the Christian faith before you make your decision.

If he is Catholic, he would not be permitted to attend other churches, or temples. I suspect orthodox faiths are similar. Further, he would be required to have you promise that the children would be raised orthodox.

It would NOT be advisable to go between 2 different faiths, because you’d be going to your religion, and he’d be going to his. You’d go to your church, and he’d go to his.
It causes a split, you see, and marriage is hard enough when everybody is starting off “on the same page”! (with more or less the same beliefs, especially about religion).

Yes, you convert, and I think, from his,…and your future children’s point of view, it probably would make it all easier. However, you would also need to BELIEVE this. It can’t be faked.
If you can do that, then yes, convert.

In Catholicism, we have RCIA: His faith surely has something like that.

Then, Catholics, before marrying take a preparation class called “precana”, which I would highly recommend. If his faith has that, I would recommend that, as well.

I cannot emphasize this enough. You must fall in love with Jesus Christ in order to become a Christian - and once you are in Love with Him your love for your spouse will be incredible.:thumbsup:

Thank you all for your suggestions…yes i do believe in Jesus Christ, i have always been to catholic schools and regularly go the church on Sundays.It feels so good to know that people are out there to help you.Thank you all.

Dear Monta I am sorry to inform you but Knanaya Christians do not accept converts into their churches. We are a community of strictly practicing endogamists which means to be Knanaya you must be born of two Knanaya Parents, there is no other way. In order for you two to become married he would have to give up his membership at Knanaya Church and either become Hindu or join another Christian Church of his choosing but he will not remain Knanaya. He will then after no longer be considered a Knanaya Orthodox but member of whatever Church he joins. When a Knanaya marries outside of the Knanaya Community they lose there standing as a Knanaya Chrisitan and become whatever religion of the spouse.

The Knanaya Community beleives in mainting the lineage and identity of there unique community and have been practicing a form of a endogamy since the traditional date of 345 A.D. Knanayas are members of two liturgical traditons, The Syro Malabar Eastern Catholic Church in which there is Kottayam Archdiocese strictly reserved for only Knanaya Catholics and there is the Syriac Orthodox Church in which there is Chingavanam Archdiocese strictly reserved for Knanaya Syriac Orthodox. The distinct community follows all canons of the church and therefore our endogamous traditon was accepted by the Church when our diocese were erected.

-Thomas

Thank you so much…i really dont want to hurt anyone here,but just wanted to know that if the guy does get married to me then will his parents be treated as outcasts??Will they also be barred from following there religion/church just because their son decided to marry someone outside the community??

No honestly speaking there is nothing to worry about, if he truly loves you he will not care and his parents shouldn’t either. In my family I have had many cousins marry out of the Knanaya Church and nobody sees them any differently :). Also no, this will not affect the membership of his parents, only his. Unless his family is extremely traditional you should have nothing to fear.

What kind of church “doesn’t accept converts?” I have never heard of such a thing. That seems to go against the very nature of Christianity. Are there other communities with this policy, or is this a unique situation?

I’m not sure how much familiarity you have with Eastern Catholicism but Knanaya Catholics are an ancient community of Catholics who are under the Syro Malabar Catholic Church which is one of the twenty-two Eastern Catholic Churches. Long story short, Knanayas have had a tradition of endogamy in order to preserve their small communities ancient Christian Customs amongst the larger community, it is also a way to preserve their identity. In the early 20th century when the Syro Malabar Church was restored in status and diocese were erected, one was created exclusively for Knanaya Catholics which is now today’s Kottayam Archdiocese of Kerala India. For the longest time Kottayam Archdiocese has acted as a sort of Sub-Sui Juris (particular church) with the customs and traditions of Knanaya Catholics.

Yes it is true that Kottayam Archdiocese does not accept converts because of the endgoamous tradition but Knanaya Catholics do highly evangelize, tho all converts are transferred to the near by Syro Malabar Diocese, once again because of the exclusivity of Kottayam Archdiocese (you must be born by two Knanaya parents in order to be considered a member). When it comes time for marriage if you break tradition and do not join Holy Matrimony with another Knanaya you loose membership to Kottayam Archdiocese and either join the Church of your spouse or another diocese of the Syro Malabar Church.

Tho many Christian Communities maintain a slight level of endogamy, none else practice it as strictly as the Knanaya Christians. It is the only group within the Catholic Church with such a practice and an ancient set of traditions. To learn about Knanaya Catholics and Kottayam Archdiocese please visit - kottayamad.org/

Very interesting; thanks for the reply. Also, it is good to know that they still evangelize.

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