Protestant Problems The Eucharist and dating!

Good Morning,

Let’s start by saying that I’m a 29-year-old male from Oregon and convert. I’ve currently been having problems with communion. I thought this might be an isolated incident. But I am realizing quickly that it is not.

I recently attended a protestant church with the girl I’ve been seeing. After attending several times, this week they did communion. I respectfully pasted and then was quickly admonish by the girl and her family after the service.

I think what it really set everybody off was that I called it symbolism. I told him that I understand why they do it but I do it for a different reason.

After more attacks I might have said that if I wanted Grape juice and crackers 7-Eleven was down the street and I prefer my crackers with cheese on them. Needless to say their host is unconsecrated I felt it would be wrong and Is respectful to them and God to take part.

So I guess my question is what is the best way to handle this in the future? Did I handle this as poorly as it seems?


Smile. Tell them you are Catholic and are only permitted to receive Holy Communion in your own church because you believe therein lies the Real Presence. I’m sorry they grilled you.
Even if they in their hearts believe it is valid, it’s not. And what a way to walk away from the table that they claim is true!

Pray for strength. This may be a long journey for you to navigate. But stay strong. And as always, remember the charity which you wish they had shown to you. But truth is truth.
God bless.


Yeah agreed thank you. I’ve tried no thank you I’m Catholic before that went about the same. I think the solution is just stay out of Protestant to churches.


That was not respectful in my view, but you probably were reacting after a number of attacks.

I think your initial attempts were OK, but the previously mentioned comment was out of line.

If it persists don’t go to her church on days they offer communion. If she really can’t respect your beliefs then I would reconsider the relationship.


Yes 7-Eleven comments I would agree were totally out of line it was more reactionary. Yeah I did reconsider the relationship because I knew that it was going to get worse before it got better.

I guess I wonder if this visceral anger towards Catholics exists everywhere. I mean I look at it seriously I have never seen this kind of hatred directed at me. Even in my younger years when living a life of sin for my entire church to see I was never treated in this way. It’s very troubling to me

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The anger doesn’t exist with all Protestant faith traditions or with all Protestants. But what anger there is comes about from fear and lack of understanding. They don’t know what Catholicism really is, only what they’ve “heard” about Catholicism.



I wouldn’t be too harsh on you for the 7-Eleven comment. I find it pretty hilarious. :stuck_out_tongue: But then again, I’ve got pretty thick skin and an allergy to stuffiness…

It is what it is. I’m a convert too, and my parents are Protestant pastors. They basically whine every time their communion or our Eucharist comes up, and it does cause some division among us. I just use the conflict to remind myself of the dangers of schism; if anything, their attitudes are proof positive that Luther and Calvin’s little experiment didn’t work out. :slight_smile:

BRB, going to 7-Eleven.


The big thing is you need to have a conversation about this.

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I’m married to a Protestant, but not once in our entire dating history going back decades (as we knew each other for many years before we married) did he or his family ever expect me to attend services at his church, much less expect me to attend “communion” there (if they even had it - I have no idea as I never went), much less argue with me about any tenet of my faith. I made it clear from the get go that I was not going to step foot in any Protestant church ever. When we visited his family, on Sundays he would drop me off at the Catholic Mass and pick me up afterwards. At other times (such as when he was not around his family) he would sometimes go to the Mass with me and still occasionally does.

If this girl you are seeing for a few dates is already pitching a fit about your difference in belief, that is a red flag. I agree you need to talk. That sort of thing would cause me to end a relationship.


I agree. Big red flag. A lot of Protestants think they need to “save” Catholics from whatever thing it is the propaganda they are steeped in about us and the Church told them to save us from. This girl may not even be interested in @Cnk0101 as much as she is in making him a member of her church.

Having come from a family with a Catholic father and a protestant mother, I would personally never marry a protestant, and would see no future in a relationship with one unless she was showing a willingness to at least consider converting to Catholicism. To me it’s not enough that she respects my religion, I also worry about the dynamic between us and the religious education of our future children. My parents get along fine, but around the holidays of Christmas and Easter there is still an unresolved tension between them. As a child, it was upsetting, and also very confusing when it came to my religious education at home. They were married in the Church with permission of the Church under the condition that any children would be raised Catholic, but not having two parents to talk to about Catholic theology was difficult, and my mother always made her own objections to the Church known even if she didn’t force those beliefs on my sister and me. My father, for his part, wasn’t that knowledgeable about Catholic theology either. I don’t think both parents need to be gung-ho Catholics who know the Catechism inside-and-out to raise children who become good Catholic adults, but I want my own children to at least have two parents who can normalize Catholicism for them, attend Mass and receive the Eucharist together, and demonstrate a unity in belief for the whole family to share in. Considering my own difficulties and gaps in Catechesis, and the fact that my sister eventually left the Church and became a full-blown pagan, I think my concerns about mixed-faith families are justified.


Catholics saying things like they like cheese with their crackers when referring to a non-Catholic communion would be one reason.


Simple don’t date Protestants or people of other religions short of Orthodox Christians and even then that’s not exactly advised either as neither churches are in communion with each other and the faithful cannot receive communion in either.

Well actually the Catholic Church allows Orthodox Christians to partake in our communion but their Church forbids them from doing so and some cases will actually excommunicate them.

Similarly we can’t receive communion in their church and some Orthodox Churches would not want us receiving in their church either.

With Protestants it’s sort of like Play-Doh Anything Goes.

I just happened to get lucky (greatly blessed) and after 11 years of being together 7 years of marriage and 4 children later my wife converted in the Eastern Ukrainian Rite of the Roman Catholic Church.

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I was in a similar situation 30 years ago. My fiance was protestant (Anglican) and joined the Catholic Church. I would later discover that her conversion was insincere, and was just to please me at the time, but that’s another story. Her parents were very angry at lack of inter-communion with Catholics, and it became a major issue for us during our engagement.

As the disagreements continued we consulted our priest about it and he told us not to worry. He’d seen this before and eventually both families would be close.

That was some of the worst advice I ever received! We stopped seeing the growing differences between us and her family. Things got worse during engagement, and worse during marriage. Her parents ostracised us from their social circle and even family. The attitude was “If we can’t share communion with you, then don’t think of us as family”, and “Our parish is our life, and you’re not part of it”.

In general, church going Protestants are more argumentative about theological differences than Catholics are, and are more likely to allow these to come between people. Even when the difference is about Catholics being (in their view) “intolerant” about intercommunion.

My wife should have stood by me, rather than her parents, but didn’t, and it would be an ongoing trouble within our own marriage.

So, it doesn’t always end well as our priest advised. Moreover, his advise blinded me to the troubles which were brewing.


Yep not everybody has a happy ending and I’m a little disturbed by those that are content with their spouses being outside the church… :disappointed:


Quick question, Edmundus: did you ever attend an Anglican service with your in-laws and decline to receive communion?

Yes. My fiance and I attended church with them a few times per year, and we declined to receive communion. We did this respectfully, but they took offense anyway.

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I have been in that marriage only I sought out to understand the history of the Church and its theology while trying to understand why there’s division amongst Christians.

It was so bad at times that I actually envied my Protestant friend because at least they were evenly yoked even if they had heretical beliefs.

I looked like a single father when I would take my three girls to church each holding my hand and one strapped to my chest.

Heck sometimes I would have my littlest daughter in a papoose and would be holding my second oldest daughter.

Eventually we got up to four kids and it became impossible to take my two younger children and shortly after that we had the Ukrainian Mission beginning at our old Parish.

That was shortly after all four children were baptized at the same time after many years of fighting with my wife about it and after finally getting our marriage blessed.

Because of my ignorance of not understanding that one has to have their marriage blessed in the church there was a short while that I couldn’t take communion and it was pretty awful.

I remember one time with my children one of the older ladies after Mass asked me where my wife was and I casually and sadly explained that she wasn’t Catholic and she didn’t want to go to church.

The woman replied that she would pray to St Monica from my wife’s conversion.

At that time that really greatly ticked me off and was frustrating and upsetting because I was ashamed.

Although remembering it now I do wonder if Saint Monica and that woman’s prayers had something to do with her conversion.

In my life I’ve been pretty much something of a scoundrel and a fiend and I had a bit of a augustinian conversion / reversion of faith.

In the long run you’re better off marrying another Catholic and especially a virtuous woman.


I totally understand their perspective.

According to Canon 844, Catholics “may licitly receive the sacraments only from Catholic ministers.” Fr. James T. O’Connor’s book The Hidden Manna [San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 1988], gives the following explanation at p. 165: “Because the Lord’s body and blood are not substantially present, a Catholic is never permitted to partake of the communion services in such [Protestant] celebrations of the Lord’s Supper.”

I’m sure your in-laws understand the Catholic premise that only its own priests (or those of the Eastern Orthodox faith and a few other denominations recognized by Rome as in full communion with it) can so consecrate the elements as to infuse them with the real presence of the body and blood of Christ. But here comes the question troubling your in-laws: What is the downside for the Catholic who ventures to consume elements that lack the Real Presence? At worst, doing so will be spiritually ineffectual, akin to taking expired medicine or a placebo. But so what? Why should that offend anyone?

If the Catholic answer is simply that partaking of the elements at a Protestant service expresses a forbidden communion with worshippers of Christ who refuse to recognize the authority of Rome as the One True Church, then something very disturbing follows: Rome is eschewing any expression of solidarity with the broader Church. This is precisely the message of provincialism that will keep the Roman Catholic Church from achieving the reconciliation and unity it says it wants.

And that’s why they view you as eschewing solidarity with them. They know full well that no Anglican priest would ever turn a Roman Catholic away from the altar rail. Ever.They were ready to express communion with you, but you were not ready to express communion with them.

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Sorry to laugh at your misfortune, but the way you worded that was hilarious. :sweat_smile:


I think the reason is twofold.

First, simulation of a sacrament is considered sacrilege. So a Protestant church simulating the Eucharist could easily be construed as sacrilege.

Second, communion is a sign of unity, an assent of the mind to the Church which you commune with. By assenting to a false unity with a church which you are not in communion with is a sort of deception, a false ecumenism.

Also, when you said “other denominations in communion with the Eastern Orthodox,” that’s wrong. You should have said Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox, Assyrians, and various Old Catholic and National Catholic Churches - none of which are in communion with each other, but the Church permits reception of Communion or Confession in them in very limited circumstances, for the good of souls.

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