Wedding ceremony questions?


So as you can tell from my ticker… I am planning to be married fairly soon! :slight_smile: YEAA :smiley: But I have a few questions concerning the wedding ceremony. First of all my mom wants us to have a lasso and coins… I believe these are hispanic traditions? I think I would feel uncomfortable doing these things. Could anyone better explain these traditions to me? And do you think I am being selfish for not wanting to do them at my wedding???

Also on another note… my fiancé is not Catholic, but he is strongly considering becoming Catholic… but is not to that point yet. He has spent years learning about Catholicism, and says he agrees with 99% of the teachings, comes to mass with me and he has agreed for to raise our future children Catholic. He comes from a very strong protestant background. So for our wedding ceremony we have not decided if we will have a mass or not (either way we will be getting married by a Catholic priest). One reason for our debate is concerning receiving the Eucharist… instead of being a uniting sacrament; it will instead show our current differences. Also I think a mass may make his side of the family very uncomfortable. But not having a mass will make my side of the family very sad… So what should we do? I know in the end the decision should be ours not our parents… I think he worries that if he does indeed become Catholic that we will regret that we didn’t get married in a nuptial mass. We are not very sad about this, just a little confused and looking for some advice. Also I would love to hear experience from anyone who was in a similar situation? Thanks


Gee, I don’t know what to say…

You are right about doing whatever you both of you agree on, however, I think that if he is more inclined towards being Catholic, then by all means, that is the first thing he should do (i.e., become Catholic).

My best advice to both of you is that you must begin your marriage by being on the same page.

God Bless!



I think there was an answer to a similar problem somewhere on these forums, perhaps by an apologist. If you don’t have nuptial mass, you can avoid the problem of some people receiving communion and some not.


if your family is Hispanic and you and they know and understand the traditions it makes sense, but if they have no value or relevance to either of you two, I don’t see the point. If it is a matter of making your mother otherwise more amenable to your marrying a non-Catholic and you can do it without violating your conscience, it would be an act of charity. If incorporating those traditions is a way of introducing more madrinas to honor various members of the family, that is something that requires more discussion.

You will very likely be advised early in your marriage preparation that in the case of a mixed marriage a service without communion is much more respectful of the differing beliefs of all who will be present. At a time we are celebrating unity, to have to explain again how divided we are by refusing half those present the Eucharist, is hardly appropriate. Many priests will refuse to celebrate a nuptial Mass or offer communion under these circumstances. You will also find out if your pastor is friendly to introducing popular customs that are not part of the marriage liturgy. If you have not already met with the pastor do this before making any other plans.

If you are not having a Mass, and these popular piety customs make your family more resigned, that is another reason to consider it if your mother feels strongly about it. I believe the coins symbolize the groom sharing all his earthly wealth with his bride, as well as their sharing all that comes, good and bad, during their lives. Another custom is the presentation of a bible, and that is something that would certainly appeal to and reassure the non-Catholic family present. Some brides present flowers for the Virgin Mary, which is another custom (not part of the liturgy) you may wish to refrain from if it would be seen as very offensive. I think your guideline here is Christian charity, and faithfulness to the marriage liturgy itself. Be guided by your pastor.


As important as the Eucharist is, I would probably forego the Mass if it was me. Then again, if it was me I wouldn’t be marrying a non-Catholic since that was high on my list.

What time is the wedding, and how big is your side? Perhaps you could reach a compromise by having a private Mass said for your side prior to or after the ceremony. It all depends on the timing, really. If a lot of guests are local, you could even do it the day before or after (as long as you’re not leaving right away for your honeymoon).


I’m not terribly familiar with the lasso tradition, although I’ve heard of it before.

However, in regards to having a mass or not, I’d say “nay” on this one, mainly because your fiance is not Catholic, nor is his family. They usually recommend to not have a mass if you’re not both Catholic because the whole sacrament is about unity and that would not necessarily bring about unity. However, with that said, it’s not a rule, so it’s really up to you two. Also, I’d say that going to Mass the next day (Sunday) is SO meaningful too…not the same but it does bring about a feeling of unity too.



I suggest you visit the Catholic Bride’s forum over at, we have a small fledgling community there, and you are welcome to join and discuss your questions.

To answer your questions, though, the arras and lasso are Hispanic and Fillipino traditions. I would not do them if I were not of these ethnic traditions.

The Church’s recommendation for mixed marriages is to have the Wedding Rite outside of Mass. Remember, it’s not the Mass that makes it a Sacrament. So, I would recommend not having Mass since your fiance cannot receive communion. Discuss it with your priest at your preparation meeting.


I agree with the other posters that having a Nuptial Mass would simply highlight the disunity of faith with your future husband.

I got married this past May, and DH had come into the Church from Judaism that Easter, and we chose to have a Nuptial Mass despite that his whole side of the family obviously could not recieve the Eucharist (well…actually his mom could…she became Catholic the year before he did :smiley: and now his younger bro is in RCIA. anyways.) It was slightly a big deal, but most people understood that we were Catholic, and we were getting married in a Catholic Church, and that’s how things are. However, I would not have done this if DH was not Catholic.

Instead of doing the lasso, which is a cool custom, but just might not make sense if you are not Hispanic, you could consider doing what we did. An Eastern European custom instructs the bride and groom to place their hands on a crucifix while they recite their vows, since the crucixfix is the ultimate symbol of married love. :slight_smile: Our priest blessed the crucifix right before we did this, and now that crucifix hangs above our bed, and is the one we pray our rosary in front of every day :slight_smile: :slight_smile: We had a little note in the program explaining the custom so everyone would understand what was going on. Blessings to you on your marriage, married life is the best!


Thanks for all your replies! :slight_smile:

To answer a few of your questions… My maternal grandmother is very Hispanic and lives in a town where every marriage has these traditions. However I don’t feel that I am Hispanic, I don’t speak Spanish and don’t really hold onto any Hispanic customs or traditions or really even know about them. So I would feel uncomfortable mostly because I don’t feel Hispanic and these are Hispanic customs. I think my mom wants me to do them to make my grandmother happy, but when I talk to my grandmother she just presents them as an option not as a thing I must do. But I do like the presentation of a bible suggestion or the tradition of saying vows while touching a crucifix. Thanks for your suggestions.

My fiancé and I have begun our marriage preparation with the Church, but we haven’t yet addressed these questions to the priest, during our next meeting we will. I’m sure he will have lots of wonderful advice. Thanks again for you comments and suggestions! :slight_smile:


**Did your mom or grandmother have a lasso at their wedding? Do they still have it if they did? that also could be a way to appease them if you incorporated a lasso that was handed down…

The prayers are not in spanish for the lasso…:slight_smile:


**I was in a very similar situation when hubby and **
**I got married almost 8 years ago (wow, **
**I can’t believe it’s already been 8 years!). **

He was Catholic but I was not. We did not have a Mass. It really would have just emphasized our differences (and our family’s). I converted in '05 and you can tell your fiance that I don’t regret not having the Mass.

Now that I understand more about the faith I’m glad we didn’t have the Mass because THAT would make me sad…knowing that I missed out on the blessed Sacrament on one of the most important days of my life. Also, looking back I can see that the potential for many people to receive the Eucharist who weren’t supposed to was very high.



My wife is Lutheran and that is what we decided. We did not have Communion because we did not want to be in the position of having to monitor her family.


I just got off the phone with my mom and I tried to nicely tell her some of your suggestions as to why a mass might not be the best for our wedding ceremony. She got very sad and angry when I told her this, and said “I can’t believe you would do this, your family means nothing to you, and that my fiancé and I are completely selfish." And then she said I was acting like I had to be a police for the Eucharist and that everyone knows that they shouldn’t go up if they are not Catholic… and that at funerals and other events no one worries about these things. She is convinced that is the norm to have a mass when both are not Catholic and she thinks we are being completely unreasonable. :frowning:

I am trying to approach it kindly with her but it doesn’t seem to work she just lashes out and then hangs up on me. The strange thing is of my family I believe that my brother and I are the most devout Catholics, while my parents don’t pursue their faith and disagree with some of the church’s teachings. I have had the hardest time convincing my mom that contraception is wrong! :eek: She still hasn’t come around to what the church teaches and yet she sees my apprehensions about having a nuptial mass as a complete disrespect for my faith. :shrug:

Any other suggestions for how I can approach this with my mom??


would she listen more if it came from the priest? Maybe you should have him talk to her?:slight_smile:


I noticed that people become very sensitive before weddings. Honestly, at this time just don’t share too much information with her. It may be that your mother doesn’t want other people to look at your wedding as “less” then their own children’s weddings. It very well might be that your mother is concerned about what “others will say”. Go with what is in your heart… God is guiding you to do what is right. Listen to Him. Honor your mother, but you do not need to bend to her will.

For now drop the subject and let her be suprised by what you plan. She won’t have that much to say after the Ceremony anyways:D … trust me, most things are forgotten and she will just be glad that you are married and happy.

God bless and you will see that everything will turn out wonderfully.


Your mother is manipulating you with her emotional blackmail… and you are letting her do it.

CCC 1621 In the Latin Rite the celebration of marriage** between two Catholic faithful **normally takes place during Holy Mass, because of the connection of all the sacraments with the Paschal mystery of Christ.

Yes. Ignore it. You do not need your mother’s approval. It’s a nice to have, but not a need to have. Marriage is the time you establish your boundaries and the way it will be going forward.

Move ahead planning your wedding the way you and your fiance want it.


might work better to talk to the priest, get all the rules and regs in writing, discuss your dilemma with him, and present it as his decision before you involve the rest of your family. Can’t say what the best way is to approach her, but just be philosophical, weddings, like funerals, seem to bring out bad family feeling, and if the inevitable disagreement wasn’t about this issue, it would be something else.


We did not have a Mass at my wedding because my (now) husband was, at the time, not Catholic and had no plans to become Catholic. * HE* did not want to have a Mass because of the obvious disunity. (His family is more or less Lutheran but his mother believed very strongly in intercommunion.)

Yes, it was very disappointing to me and to my mother. But I chose a non-Catholic; that was one of the consequences. My parents and I went to Mass in the morning, prior to the wedding, instead.

But my husband is Catholic now. Someday, if we ever renew our vows, it WILL be during a Mass.


I am going through this same thing right now!
T and I decided not to have a Nuptual Mass, as it would be a segregation of the families. Also, as my father (a convert) pointed out, my husband would not be able to receive Communion.

You should be recieveing a booklet called “Together for Life” that lets you make your ceremony. Once you have chosen all of your readins, vows, etc, there is a place to put in things for you (the lasso, coins, Marion devotion, etc). This is a good place to put in your family trads, and his as well.

Just remember to include his side. I just found out that T’s family is feeling left out. I had no idea because they didn’t seem all that interested in the wedding planning, and now that everything is done, I find this out :shrug:

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