What is the church's opinion on dating an atheist or agnostic?

What about dating different denomination Christians? I’ve been attending my friends young adult services at a non-denominational Church. I’m going to church to look for a man. That’s the best place. My current church doesn’t have many men in their 20s or 30s. Most of teens, young families or older people. I don’t see that many young Catholic men in their 20s or 30s are church. Once they got confirmed they disappeared.

A fish and a bird may love each other, but, where will they live?


In this day and age, you’re lucky to find a man whose faith is both strong and accomodating. If you do find one, I wouldn’t be fussy about his denomination – provided that he isn’t fussy about yours, of course. It is certainly preferably to be with a good man with strong faith from a different denomination, than with a man from the same denomination who is weak in his faith or who is rigid of mind. (Btw, when I say he shouldn’t be rigid I don’t mean he should be a pushover. But then, no man with strong faith would be a pushover anyway.)

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I don’t know what the Church says about it. I tried dating Catholic men, but had a rough time with it. Mostly I ran into Catholic men my age wanting to date much younger women so they could start families (I don’t blame them for their biological advantage, but it made it hard for me to find someone. The only Catholic men willing to date me were 20+ years older than me and that was too big of a generation gap for me).

The man I am dating now is best described as Agnostic. The interesting thing is, he’s going to Mass with me AND he’s going to Mass on his own (he lives a good drive away from me, so we don’t necessarily see each other every weekend). He’s even looked into RCIA. I haven’t pushed any of this on him either. I just do my thing and try to be a good Catholic. I suppose I am influencing him by example, so one never knows.

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I agree. Single Catholic men in their 20s or 30s don’t attend 11 o’clock mass. I remember going through confirmation with plenty of these dudes. Now they’re gone. Everyone moves out and on after high school and college.

That biological advantage scares me and upsets. The closer I get to thirty I become frightened if I can’t find a man my age then I never will. I hate how valuable youth is for a woman. I like younger men too but I think those are not realistic options

Well, I am in my 40s, so things are a little different for me. That seems to be the cutting off point for a lot of men. Men in their 30s, 40s, and even 50s will date (and marry) a woman in her 30s. But those same men aren’t interested in a woman over 40. If you aren’t yet 30 (still in your 20s), I wouldn’t let youth scare or upset you too much. You have time. And not rushing into something early on seems to be linked to a happier marriage when you find someone. So this could be a good thing for you.

And like I said, even with my terrible luck, I eventually found someone and he’s a very good and kind man (just not Catholic… yet, like I said, he seems interested). I hate to say it, but I think that’s what helped. I found it harder to find a Catholic man as their requirement for youth seemed to be more important than to more secular men. And I think the desire for children/the fact that men have a bigger window of opportunity to have children is why.

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I’ve noticed the emphasis of youth with some religious men. I don’t know if I fear being childless…I could adopt.

You won’t find anyone truly compatible in another church. Too many issues and disagreements. No way to start a relationship.
You need a husband, a mate, a best friend.
Not just a “man” for the purpose of having a baby.
Even if you are not able to have a child, you should have a good marriage in place before you even consider bringing a child into the world.

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I disagree. Like I said, in my case, I started dating an Agnostic and he’s been going to Mass with me and learning more about the faith (he has a real interest in it now). Of course if there are disagreements about faith and other very important issues, it won’t work. But who is to say that it isn’t God’s plan for two people to meet and one to help the other find his or her way to Christ?

To add to this, dating a Catholic doesn’t mean it will lead to a good marriage. I married a Catholic man, he left me, came out as gay (and our marriage is now annulled). On the flip side, my brother has a happy marriage to a Protestant and my dad was Episcopal and my parents were happily married until he died of cancer. My grandmother too was married to a Lutheran. So it can work.


As far as your first worry

Dating an athiest or agnostic won’t solve ANYTHING.

As a note. My husband and I met on Catholic Match. Despite being in a relatively small parish and active for years (him 2, me 4) we never met. Despite the fact that people knew us and knew we were looking out for a spouse, we never met. We even went to the same TOT events (which were crowded) and we never met. This is at a church were the CARA study said 80% were over 65…and that’s taking into account the CCD kids!!!

Pay attention at Mass and get a CM or Ave account before you dismiss the idea of Catholic guys in your area. If after 2 years on CM and Ave you cannot find anyone than perhaps you live in a bad area for Catholics.


The only thing about thati s…you have to invest a bunch of time and effort;vand it still may not work out.
During RCIA classes you would not believe how many people say they are fine with the faith, and then back out at the last minute, or only say that to keep the woman. Or the man, frankly.

I’m glad it’s working for you, but keep the odds in your favor OP, find a practicing Catholic. I prayed for one, and lo and behold!
God brought someone wonderful into my life. .

Don’t forget Catholic Singles…they’ve recently had a major overhaul of their website.

As you probably know, Catholics can validly marry outside the faith, with a dispensation. However, it is better to agree to marry and raise children Catholic. My mother agreed to convert from Methodist to Catholic to marry my father. My Dad would not have married her otherwise. Being of the same faith and attending the same Church made life so much easier.

If there are few young Catholic men in your town, have you considered moving to an area more Catholic?

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That is a great line. I have never heard that before.

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I did mash it up a bit, but, it is from “Fiddler On The Roof”

As the Good Book says “Each shall seek his own kind”. In other words, a bird may love a fish… but where would they build a home together?"


The Church allows it, but it’s really not advisable, especially with dating a non-Christian. If the Christian takes their faith seriously, then there’s honestly no point in being with someone with radically different worldviews, in my honest opinion.

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For those you don’t know, “Ave” refers to Ave Maria Singles https://www.avemariasingles.com/

there is also https://www.catholicsingles.com/

But I highly recommend Catholic Match.

Yes, there’s a man named Jesus who is awesome and shows up in every Catholic church daily


OP, have you ever actually tried Catholic dating sites?

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