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Nancy Ramos wrote:

Hello my name is Nancy.

I'm a 24-year-old female and my boyfriend and I are talking about marriage. I want to get married in a Catholic Church and so does he. We are both Catholics and although I don't go to church every Sunday (I wish I could), I take my faith with me wherever I go.

I have never received my First Holy Communion or Confirmation and was told in order to get married at a Catholic church I have to.

  • How does one go about doing that at my age?

Nancy Ramos

  { How does one who doesn't go to Church and hasn't received the sacraments prep for Marriage? }

Mike replied:

Hi Nancy,

Thanks for the question.

All you have to do is make an appointment with your local pastor and share with him the desire both of you have to get married in the Church. He make suggest joining an RCIA set of classes, which I would agree with. RCIA is a great way to meet new family and friends. I am stumped by how (your parents or the parish) could let you go so long without receiving the sacraments.

  • Were you raised Catholic?
  • Did you have CCD?

I don't want you to get the wrong impression though. I'm glad and very happy you visited our web site today.

As I have said in some of my previous replies, the sacraments of the Church are like divine dynamite. The word sacrament comes from a word meaning to swear an oath. In every Sacrament God is swearing to do what the sacrament says it does.

Making our Sunday Mass obligation is so important because we renew our New Testament Covenant with the Lord and, in receiving His Body and Blood, we are able to discern proper Christian behavior from unhealthy Christian behavior.

  • Could the priest be boring? <Sure!>
  • Could his homily be weak? <Sure!>

The key, and the thing that makes the Catholic Church stand out from others, is we have both the menu (the Scriptures) and the meal (the Eucharist) so although the priest may be weak, the Word and the Blessed Sacrament is always their to strengthen us on our weekly pilgrimage until the next week.

This is why it's so important for you to receive your First Communion, and for that matter, First Confession, which I assume you haven't had.

It's edifying that you take your faith with you where ever you go. Good for you!

You just want to make sure it is strong enough to speak up when called upon. Renewing your Sunday covenant will help in this area.

Another thing that's very important for you and your fiancé to know is the Church cannot baptize any future children you have together without a good hope they will be raised in the Catholic faith. When you sit back and think about it, it's really common sense.

  • Why would the Church baptize the children of a lapse Catholic couple who are now totally atheistic and plan to raise their children as atheists?

Although our catechesis has been weak among the lay faithful, we are still called to know the faith and proclaim the Gospel and Church teachings as Jesus told us to do before He ascended into Heaven. (Matthew 28:16-20)

I hope this helps. If there are further questions or if your fiancé has questions don't hesitate asking.

Mike

Nancy replied:

Hi Mike,

I was baptized a Catholic but my mom lost her faith and we stopped going to church. When I was old enough I started making my own religious decisions. I have always been afraid to ask and figured it was too late. Your reply provided very helpful information. Thanks for the response.

I'm going to church this Sunday so I can have some blessings come my way and to thank the Lord for this time. I won't be shy and will speak to the priest and see how I can start heading in the right direction to continue my life as a Catholic woman for my future husband and children.

Nancy

Mike replied:

Hi Nancy,

Thanks for the reply.

You said:
I have always been afraid to ask . . .

You are not the first one, sadly, that we have heard this from. You should never be afraid to ask any question about your faith and, for the Church, I apologize if someone in past has discouraged you from asking questions.

The philosophy I try to promote among my team adheres to the motto: answering all questions, with charity, encouragement, and support, while remaining faithful to the teachings of the Church. Questioners may not like our answers but they hopefully will sense it is given in charity while being faithful to the Church. If you have a faith question it deserves to be answered.

  • Why?

Because the Spirit is moving in a person who has faith questions as he or she grows and develops their faith. It's called being human : )

Until you receive the sacrament of Confession you should refrain from receiving Communion or until your pastor says otherwise. He will be able to assess any nuances of your current situation.

Let us know if you have any further questions. That's what we are here for.

I would also recommend buying a cheap Catechism of the Catholic Church on Amazon.
Also, check out some of the books in our Recommended Reading page.

If you respect the Church enough to want to get married in Her, it only makes sense that you should know what She and you both believe. The same would apply to your boyfriend.

Mike

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