Should I attend a buddhist funeral if I am baptised?

Today, I bumped into some of my christian friends. They asked why I have delayed my baptism. I told them that I do not want to offend God because when my mother passed away I need to attend her Buddhist funeral and carry out all the necessary Buddhist rites. I told them that God might be angry at me if I had done it. My friends told me that it is fine and just get baptised. They said even after baptised I could continue these Buddhist rites.

Now I don’t know whether I should do it my way or just follow what they say.

1 Like

Just a question: what do these Buddhist rites entail? And would you be under a definite obligation to perform them?

@Autumn-Smoke It involves burning of joss sticks, bowing and burning of hell notes. As the edlest son I must do it.

I reckon you should speak with the priest at your local Church. Normally I think the answer would be that we can attend but not participate, but being related puts you in a bit of a predicament.

Here would be the usual answer: http://www.ewtn.com/vexperts/showmessage.asp?number=537245

5 Likes

God won’t be angry with you for honoring your mother at her funeral

5 Likes

I would suggest speaking with your priest, but I tend to agree with Techieguy. This seems like a reasonable request of your mom and a situation of “Honor your mother”. I’m also sure it’s not the first time it’s come up for the priest. See what he says.

2 Likes

Talk to your priest. I personally wouldn’t think this would be an issue, since your intent would honoring your mother. I’m sorry for your loss.

2 Likes

I agree with the majority opinion. Rather than delaying your Baptism, you should speak to a Priest who can give you advice on how to both be Catholic and honor your mother at her funeral.

3 Likes

I feel like you would be honoring your parents, which is one of the ten commandments.
I don’t think God would be offended in the slightest.

4 Likes

There was a time not too long ago that going to a Protestant church was a no-go for Catholics. I think you are OK overlying your Christian beliefs on Buddhist ceremony (if both sides can respect each other). We have candle light vigils with everyone across the spiritual spectrum, even those with no faith. Celebrate your mom’s life and the mystery of human life. This is a gathering of humans connecting over the earthly loss of a dear person not religious competition.

1 Like

I agree with everyone who has advised you to speak to your priest.

Burning incense and bowing is not contrary to the Catholic Faith. As far as burning ‘hell’ notes I think it might be better to make a donation to the poor or some other charity.

Under other circumstances, I would say don’t go and don’t participate esp the “hell notes.” But being the deceased’s oldest son and being duty and honor bound to perform these tasks, I advise asking your priest esp in regards to the “hell notes.” You need an alternative there since you can’t do that part.

1 Like

It’s your mother’s funeral. Just go.

2 Likes

We are free to attend funerals, marriages, other faith religious services. This is your mother’s funeral, wild horses could not keep me away from my mom’s funeral.

3 Likes

So it sounds as though the issue is more complicated than the simple question of whether you should attend. The issue is that if you attend, you will be expected, as the eldest son, to participate in ceremonies such as the burning of “hell notes” to your ancestors. Is there a way to attend but not participate in these ceremonies? Or is that basically unheard of in your culture? As others have said, talk to your pastor.

1 Like

I think it’s unheard of. Sounds like it’s the OP’s duty as the eldest son.

1 Like

Agreed. This is his mother. Not attending her funeral is likely to leave you with regrets and cause stress later.

1 Like

I think you should keep your post up, @Rutherford2. There’s nothing offensive in it, no reason for it to be deleted and much to be learned from it.

I’ve known of priests to join Buddhists in prayer services and even conduct Muslim funerals in the absence of an imam. I’m sure under the guidance of your priest you can carry out your mother’s wishes even after your baptism.

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.