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Kim Eisterhold wrote:

Hi, guys —

  • Do you think it is wise for a Catholic married to a former Catholic, who is now a (SDA) Seventh Day Adventist, to attend the SDA church services on Saturday?
    (Only for the purpose of trying to keep a marriage together.)

It is so stressful attending this church, knowing the intense dislike they have for the Catholic Church. On the following Sunday, I attend my Catholic parish by myself. If I don't attend with him on Saturday, I really don't have much of a life, being alone most of the time. He spends a lot of time with the members of the congregation at various socials and church functions that I am not a part of. I have attended these functions occasionally and have felt like an outsider.

I love the Catholic Church and could never abandon it; it is where I belong. I thought I could hit a happy medium living this way and even thought my husband might, on occasion, attend Mass with me on Sunday, though it didn't work this way. He considers Sunday a work day and does whatever pleases him. I hate being stuck here in the middle not knowing what to do.

  • Any suggestions?

Thank you very much.

It helps to have someone to talk to who understands.

Kim

  { To preserve my marriage, should a Catholic attend a Seventh Day Adventist service on Saturday? }

Mike replied:

Hi, Kim —

Although your marriage did not start off as a mixed marriage, the problem you have addressed in your e-mail is a common one among mixed marriages. Ultimately, you have to respect your husband's free will to believe what he wants, but at the same time, he has to respect your free will to believe what you want to believe.

  • If he is not willing to join you for Sunday Mass at your Catholic parish, why would he expect you to join him at his church service?
    Especially when it teaches things you don't believe.

You said:
Do you think it is wise for a Catholic married to a former Catholic, who is now a (SDA) Seventh Day Adventist, to attend the SDA church services on Saturday?
(Only for the purpose of trying to keep a marriage together.)

Let's go back to the basics of Our Blessed Faith which Our Lord Jesus left for us.

What are the two most powerful things any practicing Catholic can do to change the life of an individual, family, and world for the good?

The answer:

  1. To live a sacramental life, always in a state of grace by going to frequent Confession [Confession before Holy Communion, if needed]. In the sacraments, we receive special graces for our specific state in life. These important graces help us to live a more holy and courageous life and witness to Jesus, the Risen Lord.

    and

  2. By praying, especially the Rosary, for the conversion of your husband back to the Faith and making Holy Hours if you have Adoration at  your parish.

Remember, when you attend someone else's church services, you are implicitly telling him:

There is something in his church, that is not in the Catholic Church that is meeting your spiritual needs.

I don't believe this is the message you want to send to him and his congregation.   Nevertheless,
this is what you would be saying. It's your slow but steady witness to him of the Catholic Faith that will bring him back Kim! If done correctly, overtime, he will say:

  • Why is my wife always doing these nice things for me?
  • Why does she seem to enjoy her faith so much?
  • She appears to have a confident faith, because she is never forcing me to do anything
    I don't wish to do.

You stated:
I have attended these functions occasionally and have felt like an outsider.

These functions will be like many Protestant Bible studies, probably with many former, bitter Catholics who are holding on to grudges — which they won't let go off. I recommend you don't attend these.

Tell him you want to attend only functions that respect your Catholic Faith! [The only Christian faith that traces back to 33AD.]

You stated:
If I don't attend with him on Saturday, I really don't have much of a life being alone most of the time.

Talk to the pastor and priests at your parish about getting involved in ministries within the parish. There are usually many to choose from. Get involved in them! Make new friends at the parish. Who knows, there maybe another person in the parish in a similar situation as yours.

My short advice:

  1. Live a sacramental life and
  2. pray daily!

Take care and keep in touch,

Mike Humphrey

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