Catholics marrying non-denominational followers : LUSENET : Catholic : One Thread

Hi everyone, Could anyone please clarify what non-dinominational people believe? I am a Catholic & have a boyfriend of 28months & he is now deciding to get baptized in a non-dinominational church. We talk about marriage & want to spend the rest of our lives together but I personally am starting to question if me being a Catholic and him being apart of a non-dinominational church will be a big issue.

My biggest concern comes when thinking about future children with eachother. After reading I understand and correct me if I am wrong is that once a noncatholic & a catolic marry into a catholic church w/a catholic priest that there is a promise & mutual agreement that the catholic person will raise the children up catholic. But what if will want his children to be in this non-dinominational path?

Does anyone know or expereinced this mix religions with catholics & non-dinomiantional people? How close are these two "groups" since what I understand is non-dinominational people do not declare any religion they just believe in the word of God. Any information would help. Thanks in advance.

-- Mary Ann (, March 12, 2003


Response to Catholics marrying non-dinomenational followers

Dear Mary Ann,

The issue here is that of a Catholic marrying a Protestant. The fact that his specific church calls itself "non-denominational" is irrelevant. All that means is that his denomination doesn't align itself with any specific "mainline" denomination like Baptist, Methodist, Lutheran, etc. However, a denomination is defined by a specific set of beliefs. That is what separates one denomination from another, and in fact is what caused them to separate into denominations in the first place. Saying that they believe in "the Word of God" does not set "non-denominational" churches apart. All Protestants make that claim, though what they really follow is their personal interpretation of the Word of God, which is why there are so many conflicting denominations. Catholics of course also follow the Word of God, only they have the divinely ordained means of accurate, valid interpretation, so that all Catholic churches worldwide have the same beliefs. Churches which call themselves "non-denominational" do have a specific set of beliefs they follow, which are usually determined by the personal beliefs of the pastor or preacher or minister or whatever they call him. Therefore, in the final analysis, a "non-denominational" church is just another Protestant denomination. So that's the issue you face - marrying a Protestant. While the Church does not recommend this, it does allow it, and it happens frequently. You need to talk to your priest about what would be expected of you personally and you as a couple in entering into that kind of marriage.

-- Paul (, March 12, 2003.

Response to Catholics marrying non-dinomenational followers

Mary Ann,

Firstly, I ask you to pardon the immature responses you are viewing on this forum these days...It must be Spring break somewhere, and someone has a bit too much time on their hands.

Your concern is very valid, and I commend you for looking into this realistically. Many engaged couples think that everything will simply fall into place after the "I do's," but for a marriage to really work, the couple needs to be prepared to deal with the many difficult issues that life may throw at them. Being of differing religious backgrounds can be a particular challenge, but it doesn't have to be so.

The Church does ask the Catholic spouse to promise to bring up future children in the Catholic Faith. This needs to be discussed with your fiance. Both of you will also need to attend marriage preparation classes offered by the Church before you can have a Catholic wedding. These things are to ensure that both of you are prepared for the big step you are about to take.

Non-denominational churches have a different way of interpretting many of the Scriptures than Catholics.

They do believe in Jesus Christ, as we do, but they do not have the benefit of leadership. Catholics have the Magisterium, the teaching voice of the Church, which is guided by the Holy Spirit, according to Christ's promise.

Since non-denominational churches act independently, you may not find two which both embrace the same doctrines.

Catholics universally are taught the same doctrines whether in your hometown, or in some other country.

Our Church is 2,000 years old, having been founded on St. Peter (the first pope) when Jesus said to His Apostle Simon, "You are Peter (which means rock), and upon this rock, I will build my church." The leadership of our Church can be traced all the way back to the first pope. Non-denominational churches began within the past 100 years or so.

We Catholics believe that Jesus Christ is truly Present, Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity in Holy Communion. Non-denominational churches teach that eating bread and grape juice is a symbolic gesture to remember Jesus. Catholics are not expected to partake of Protestant "communion," as it would be a mockery to the True Sacrament of the Lord's Body and Blood, which He left to us. Likewise, Protestants are not permitted to receive Holy Communion in the Catholic Church, because they are not in unity with the Catholic Church, and this is a Sacrament of Unity.

These are some of the many similarities and differences, and of course, I have really generalized them...(and perhaps over- generalized them.)

I encourage you to invite your fiance to your Church, to learn about your Faith, and certainly to become acquainted with your pastor!

If you don't have a copy of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, I encourage you to get one. This can help both you and your finace understand what exactly the Church teaches on many, many issues!

May God bless you and guide you in this lifetime decision!

In His Peace,

-- Anna <>< (, March 12, 2003.

Response to Catholics marrying non-dinomenational followers

Some people always seem to surprise me! I found my answer & my decision...i'm sure you will find yours. :)

-- Mary Ann (, March 13, 2003.

Response to Catholics marrying non-dinomenational followers

GOD does not look at a title of what people are called in this world, he looks at your heart GOD loves us all the real question is does he follow jesus and delieve he is our savior many poeple are prejudice againest others when we should all as believers band together in one acord and one minde dont be prejudice againest him here is a good virse for this 1st john 4;20 if a man say i love GOD and hateth his brother he is a liar; for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen how can he love GOD whom he hath not seen judge among your self does this men believe jesus is his savior if he does then why do you think he must be apart of the catholic organization for GOD to save hem or to be a follower of jesus or be called your brother in christ.. the devil would love for all of the churches to hate each other

a tellaphone pole is to big to break in half but you split it up in meny diferent pices then one buy one thay are easly broken and that is what the devil is doing to the church spliting them up and destroying them one buy one but remember marriage is untill death GOD hates divorce dont get married unless it is for life

-- Jason Kennon (, March 14, 2003.

I am also in the same situation as Mary Ann.

Firstly and foremost I would like to consider myself as a Christian, as i consider all my brothers who believe in GOD and Jesus (whatever their denomination). I could be catagorised as a Protestant, or Anglican as i spent from when i was born until the age of 20 attending a very musical Anglican church. I sung in the choir 3 or 4 times a week which has led me to develop a skill which i love to use. I praised GOD and I thank him for the gift he has given me of my voice to sing.

My future spouse is a Catholic and her parents are very devout. I have a strong affintiy to my faith, as the time we spent in church was family time. My Father passed away 2 years ago, and I still miss him very much. He was my main stay and encourager to develop my voice and he also sung in churches throughout his life.

We both want to be joined in marriage in the eyes of God. My major issue is that the Catholic church does not recognise my faith and my families faith and will not allow me to take holy communion on my wedding day. As I stated in my first paragraph, I consider myself to be a Christian. I recognise the Anglican church has not been established for any where as long as the Catholic church, but we do hold the same general beliefs and morals.

Surely if the word of God can be spread far and wide across the world by different forms of worship; which people can relate to this is a good thing. The argument that by diversifying the religion this will allow the devil to creep in and segregate is held up by the catholic church not accepting other denominations as true christians. We should all move forward as one.

Every denomination has its bad apples, just as every pebble beach will contain pieces of glass - and the catholic church has experinced this just as other denominations have. Its how we deal with these as a whole which is important.

The Anglican church will happily marry us and allow both of us to take communion, however some poeple say that it is sacreligious for my partner to take communion in an Anglican church. I find this deeply offending, is our communion not good enough? Surely by taking communion you are showing your faith in God be it considered the actual body of christ or a representation. The important thing is how we live our lives and pass good morals and teachings onto our children....

I am very perplexed and wish this was not made into such and issue... All we want to do is get married on the eyes of God.

Any comments would be much apprecited.

-- Duncan French (, February 09, 2005.


The Catholic Church does regard you as a Christian. The reservations the Catholic Church holds regarding your denominational faith has nothing to do with how long your church has existed, or the true fact that every church has "bad apples". It has to do with the fact that Jesus Christ founded one Church for all men, and never authorized the founding of any other churches in His name. It has to do with the fact that Jesus provided the fullness of truth to the one Church He founded, and other churches, including your own, have rejected much of that truth, and consequently profess only partial truth. Do you believe that when a person receives Holy Communion in the Catholic Church, he is consuming the literal Body and Blood of the risen Christ? If you don't, then you lack one of the central truths of the Christian faith, and merely going through the motions without a profound realization and appreciation of Who you are receiving would be sacrilegious; and allowing you to do so would be gravely wrong. The morals upheld by your church may well be similar to those upheld by the Catholic Church; but the doctrinal beliefs of your church, like those of every manmade church, are distinctly and critically different from the beliefs of the Catholic Church, and therefore from the beliefs of Christianity as Christ founded it. In truth - and I say this with no feelings of animosity toward you or your church - no, your communion is not "good enough". How can one possibly compare eating a piece of bread to receiving the Body and Blood of Christ? It would not really be sacrilegious for your fiancee to receive communion at your church, but it would not be allowed, since such an act might convey the false impression that such a "communion" is equivalent to, or at least in some way comparable to the true Eucharist instituted by Christ.

Diversity can be a good thing, and there is great diversity within the Holy Catholic Church; but not diversity of doctrinal beliefs. Diversity of beliefs means the teaching of untruth, and Christ wants us to have the fullness of truth. That's why He founded one true Church for all mankind. We can love one another and show respect for one another as human beings and as children of God, but we cannot "move ahead as one" because we are not one. The Protestant rebellion of the 16th Century started the fragmentation of Christianity, a process which continues to the present day. We can't simply ignore that fact and go through the motions as though it didn't happen. "Communion" literally means "common unity", which is an additional reason why those who have separated themselves from the Church Christ founded cannot share in the ultimate expression of that Church's God-given unity. We all hope and pray for the day when Christian unity may be restored. Until then, we have to live as the situation is, not as we wish it were.

I'm sure you already realize this, but the only way your Catholic fiancee can be "married in the eyes of God" is to be married in the Catholic Church.

-- Paul M. (, February 09, 2005.

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