Wedding Ring: Sacramental Value?

My wife and I were married 15 years ago. About 5 years into our marriage, she developed an allergy to the gold in the ring. We did not believe it at first, because we thought that gold was hypo-allergenic. Turns out, it is possible to develop a reaction to it. Bottom line, she cannot wear her actual wedding ring (the one that was given to her during the sacrament of marriage).

I am now in a position to get her a new one. I was wondering if anyone could give input on whether it is okay to get rid of the old one. I thought, perhaps I would have the stones removed and set in another ring, then sell the gold to a jeweler. There are all kinds of alternatives, but they all deal with getting rid of the original ring that the priest blessed during the sacrament of marriage. The only other alternative is to keep it, and never wear it. This seems so wasteful.



My wife’s ring was stolen around thirty years ago and replaced since, we’re still married and coming up on our 44th so while it may have had some sentimental value and may have been blessed it is not what ties us together. Paschal candles are blessed and consumed as are other sacramentals so I don’t think there is any harm in recycling a ring, I’m surprised it’s sentimental value would permit that though!

I wouldn’t destroy your wife’s first ring because it is blessed and represents inwardly the meaningful solemn sacramental vow you made to each other and before God Himself. In this sense I don’t think the ring itself though material represents mere sentimentality.

Taking the word “sacrament” in its broadest sense, as the sign of something sacred and hidden (the Greek word is “mystery”), we can say that the whole world is a vast sacramental system, in that material things are unto men the signs of things spiritual and sacred, even of the Divinity. “The heavens show forth the glory of God, and the firmament declares the work of his hands” (Psalm 18:2). The invisible things of him , from the creation of the world, are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made; his eternal power also, and divinity" (Romans 1:20).

Church buildings are blessed yet Bishops have no problem selling them; statues, icons, rosaries, missals, bibles all manner of blessed religious items can be found for sale used.

This (and related questions about blessed objects) regularly appear on the Ask An Apologist board. here is the answer that is given. I hesitate to spoil it for you, but the answer is: yes, you can sell it for the gold.

Ordinarily I myself wouldn’t sell a Blessed rosary or bible myself. I’d give it away freely to a friend or family member who needs it.

Church buildings are blessed yet Bishops have no problem selling them

When a Catholic Church building is sold to the public and undergoes major renovation, its retained blessing is removed.

And ordinarily if you walk into a Catholic religious store where statues, icons, rosaries, missals, bibles all manner of blessed religious items are sold (“they are not blessed”).

What are you quoting?

I checked, and you can find it here. :slight_smile:

Thanks. That would be the old Catholic Encyclopedia, for those who don’t want to click through.

Do you have children? Wouldn’t you want to save it for them? Or what about a godchild or special child in your life?

I would never get rid of such a thing, even if it sat in my jewelry box for the rest of my life.


Try putting clear nail polish on the inside.

I began to have allergic reactions to metallic wristwatches, it seems to have come and gone, and I read that you could put clear nailpolish on the inside so the metal won’t have direct contact with your skin.

That being said, the ring is a blessed item, but and for that and for the sheer sentimental value, I think you really should hang onto it the way it is. But my guess is that it would follow the rules of regular blessed things. Things lose their blessing when they are sold or when they lose their form (like a broken statue). So if you sold it, and if it’s just going to be melted down, it would lose the characteristic of being blessed. That’s how it works with regular blessed stuff, at least.

Thank you all for your input. I think I’ll keep it.

Just like buildings, palms, etc, after it’s blessed it should hold a special value. However, palms die, and buildings get used for different things. I am of the understanding that if the item is destroyed from it’s original use, it loses it’s blessing. If that makes sense.

I think taking the stones and putting it into another setting is a beautiful way to reconcile the time-of-vows with now. I would even want to do a renewal and use the new ring there- a unity of both times!

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