The Non Catholic Christian my sister is dating


She is coming this week to visit and he is also coming. I have not met him yet. He will be staying with his cousins and my sister will stay with me. She is 33 and he is 41. He is divorced and she has never married.

I think they may be headed to the altar. If they choose to get married in a protestant Church would I be justified in skipping the wedding ceremony and only attending the reception?


Your sister can obtain a dispensation from Catholic form from her Bishop. They will have to go through Catholic marriage preparation and be determined free to marry-- which may involve a decree of nullity on his part. Not enough details to know what will be involved

If they go through proper channels and receive proper dispensations and permissions, her marriage will be perfectly valid. And, in such a case there is no moral reason you cannot attend. Only if she chooses to marry without proper dispensation or permission would you have a moral reason not to attend.

You seem to be putting the cart before the horse. They are not engaged. You do not know her plans for marriage, yet you assume that she would violate Church teaching and marry outside the Church.

How about talking to her about it instead of taking this attitude before she’s even engaged?


I have tried talking to her about it but she is will not talk to my parents, my other sister or me about the relationship. I understand that if she gets proper dispensation from the Church her marriage will be valid. I want to be prepared about the morality of attending a Catholic person’s wedding at a Protestant Church. I am not expecting her to do this but just in case I want to be prepared.


He will of course need to seek an annulment if his first wife is still alive. That's your problem here. Not necessarily the problem of a protestant wedding.


It appears that neither your sister, nor the man she is seeing, has said anything about getting married yet, but you are already looking for a reason not to attend the wedding.


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit