Sin to refuse marriage?

Is it a sin to:

perpetually refuse to marry a particular person
when that person has proposed marriage to you,
if the only reason why you don’t want to get married is that you don’t ever want to marry?

You need not get married if you don’t want to. There is no law in the Church that says you must. You may want to encourage your suitor to look elsewhere.

Thank you!

Not a sin - it is called wise.

What sin do you think it would be?

Definitely not sin, I would only question why you are in a romantic relationship with someone you don’t ever intend on entertaining marriage with. Leading someone on could be sinful.

It’s definitely not a sin to refuse marriage but it would be very sinful to fornicate with a person when you know you never want to marry, you would be using the person selfishly for your own gratification. This is a serious sin. In my eyes it is raping a person of their dignity.

It is a sin to have sex with someone you plan on marrying too. No sex until after the wedding ceremony. :thumbsup:

OP, why would you think turning someone down is a sin?

Many saints turned down their suitors, even marriages their parents had arranged, because they wanted to dedicate their lives to God.

St Catherine of Sienna iirc and St Rose of Lima are two who come to my mind; I know there are others but I forget their names :o

No, it is not a sin. It is wise exercise of your free will.

I think therefore I am single! :smiley:

If you truly don’t want to be married or feel that you are not called to it, then why is there someone in your life that is proposing marriage to you? Are you giving mixed signals to them which may lead them to think that you might change your mind. It seems wrong to mislead someone or give them false hopes of marriage if you truly do not want to be married and if the other person desires marriage then you need to set them free to find someone else to do so and encourage them to move on in their life. It isn’t wrong to not want marriage but it would be wrong to mislead someone on that wants marriage.

St Clair of Assisi, St Kateria both turned down marriages.

Not wrong at all. But if you do not intend to marry you should not keep steady company. Stick to good friends of the same sex to associate with. Otherwise go out in groups or attend group functions only. But you should decide what you are going to devote your life to. I don’t know your age, but if you are under 60 you may change your mind someday in the future. And that is O.K. too.

Best Wishes


I frame my answer on the assumption that it is you who is “refusing” the proposals, rather than making them.

If you don’t ever want to get married, then we can say you don’t want to get married at the present time.

If you feel no calling to be married (at the present time), then it is right to refuse whatever proposals might come your way.

If you have a view that you do not ever want to be married, and you are committed to a chaste single life, then I wonder how you arrive at a point (in a relationship) where another would propose marriage to you - once, let alone perpetually? This is not to say that you would never go out with a girl, but it ought to be obvious from such outings (given the chasteness of single life assumption), that you don’t seek marriage with her. There is most often a ramping up of all forms of affection, including physical, emotional, etc. in a relationship that is heading in the direction of marriage, and the absence of that ramp-up would send a pretty clear signal that we’re not heading in that direction! So I’m sure you can understand why I am asking my bolded question above!

I note you have posted a number of times on subjects similar to this, eg. Is there a larger picture you’ve not shared with us, that may help us to provide more meaningful responses?

You have also been asked previously, but not answered (or I couldn’t find it), why you adopt the position of “never wanting to be married”. May I ask again, as the answer may be material?

Its an interesting question given God’s command to Adam and Eve.
I am reminded of my priest teacher at secondary school who astounded us one day by saying that if we were the last male and female on earth then it would be a serious sin not to procreate.

However I believe God’s command was to the species as a whole and obviously not to every individual.

Though I wonder if someone needs a serious reason for actually choosing never to marry (eg to join religious life or look after one’s family or to make a private vow to God or dedicate onself to some noble pursuit or career).

I hope that priest was not also teaching biology. If we’re down to only 2 humans, it’s too late - the gene pool is already depleted way too much for a viable population to be established.

Speak for your own genes!
I’d like to think my genes have lots of potential ;).

Good post, as I have wondered the same thing. I heard said once that, in the strictest sense, there are only three vocations: married life, religious life, or the priesthood. That may be a bit much, but when I think about it, it seems to make sense.

However, that does not mean it is a sin to not follow your vocation, maybe many of us do not even recognize our true vocation.

But to just stay single for no purpose? Its hard to see how that is really a healthy thing for most people. And I do like your examples of serious reasons (with the possible exception of the private vow to God, which would also need a purpose), the list is likely complete IMO.

It seems that the OP left this thread after the first response. Further responses, however wise, might just be futile. :D:p

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