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Ifeoma Nwolisa-Korie wrote:

Dear Team,

My family practices the Catholic faith and values all of its teachings. I am married to a Catholic with children.

My baby sister is about to get married and the husband is Anglican. He insists they must wed in the Anglican church and will still allow my sister practice her Catholic faith to the fullest.

He is willing to have a quiet wedding in the Catholic Church to allow my sister to fulfill her martial obligations but he will not sign any Church documents. Later he wants to carry out an elaborate ceremony in the Anglican church.

  • What can we do in line with the Catholic Church teachings to allow my sister have a full, valid, Catholic wedding rite?

Thank you,

Ifeoma
Lagos, Nigeria

  { What can we do to have a full Catholic marriage rite, if her fiancé insists on an Anglican wedding? }

Mike replied:

Dear Ifeoma,

Your baby sister's husband does not understand what is required for his fiancée to practice her faith.

A marriage in the Catholic Church is not an ordinary ceremony; it is a sacramental ceremony that bonds a couple together for life.

Being married in the Catholic Church is an important part of your sister practicing her faith.

The husband is insisting on something that is contrary to your sister practicing her faith.

One cannot be both an Anglican and a Catholic. They are two faiths with opposing teachings rooted in marriage.

Without the husband:

  • changing his mind on where the marriage takes place
  • signing the appropriate documents, and
  • agreeing to be a witness to your promise to raise the children of your marriage Catholic

there is nothing you can do, as the Church will not recognize her marriage as a valid one.

It is important for your sister's fiancé to understand that he has to promise to be a witness to your sister's promise to raise the children of their marriage, Catholic. This includes not interfering with her efforts. That said he, himself, doesn't have to become a Catholic. Reading this section on mixed marriages from the Catechism may help more:

Next time, to ask a question to the whole team, just go here and scroll down to the bottom of the page:

I hope this helps,

Mike

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