Busted Halo
May 31st, 2009

Can We Have An Interfaith Wedding?

The Princess, The Priest--The Rabbi--and the War for the Perfect Wedding Episode 7

by and Dr. Christine B. Whelan & Fr. Eric Andrews CSP


Episode #7 — Can we have an interfaith wedding?

NEXT WEEK: Interfaith marriage — What about the kids?

Want to see more? Watch other episodes of “The Princess, The Priest and the War for the Perfect Wedding” here.

Special thanks to Rabbi Jill Hausman of The Actors Temple, NYC. Contact her at www.cantorweddings.com/

Dr. Christine B. Whelan, is an Iowa-based social historian, professor, journalist and author. She is the author of Marry Smart: The Intelligent Woman’s Guide to True Love, and Why Smart Men Marry Smart Women.

Fr. Eric Andrews CSP is the pastor of Blessed John XXIII parish, which serves as the Catholic campus ministry for the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. Prior to entering the priesthood, he worked for Jim Henson and the Muppets on a variety of television productions.

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  • Kathy

    Timmy, I am not sure what your side note was implying. It was my own Catholic faith that taught me there is one God and we all belong to Him. Those who don’t believe in transubstantiation simply miss out on the realization of His full presence. The Catholic church does not allow non Catholics to receive Communion during Mass. That is a Roman law. If one receives Communion thinking it is only a symbol, it doesn’t change the fact that He really has poured Himself into the bread and wine. If a Catholic truly believes in the power of the Eucharist, they shouldn’t feel they should monitor who receives. He is an all powerful God. My initial point was that as a mother who raised her kids Catholic, I had hoped my children would have a Catholic wedding. To have our bride not partake in the “real feast” at the ceremony was as crazy to me as saying she couldn’t partake in the toast at the reception. A minister commissioned by God conducted the ceremony, witnessed by a community of His believers. The Lord made Himself visible through His Word that was broken and shared. I still believe they were married in the eyes of God. I don’t claim to be a theologist or a scholarly writer. I do know that the Lord sends His Holy Spirit down to speak to us and He spoke to me. He told me to lay that worry on Him. I am not a heretic. I profess the Nicene Creed, as does our bride profess the similar Apostles Creed. The creed is the summary of our faith. I believe those are the “requirements” we need to maintain. Again, I am no theologist, but is it possible that “the keys to the kingdom” He passed on were “the ways to the kingdom?” Can we agree that there is only one gatekeeper?

  • timmy

    and kathy, sounds like you have just as firm a grasp on the rules of writing in english as you do on true theology. side note; how you feel about something just might not be enough to alter God’s nature or the requirements he has clearly maintained through his Holy Church.

  • timmy

    God is not Catholic or Jewish? God is both Catholic and Jewish, in instituting the Catholic Church as the natural and ordained path of the Jewish people, and in taking on the fully God fully human person of Jesus at the head of the Catholic Church, God shows himself to be both. remember the only reason we have the division of Catholics and Jews is because of the 1st century exclusion of non Jewish born peoples in God’s salvation by the Jewish authorities at the time. it was not simply a split over doctrine. to hear rabbi imagurl speak of inclusiveness seems kind of silly. the Catholic Church is the Jewish Church, complete with the Messiah we were promised and delivered, and the jews of the 1st century ( the majority that is ) new it. it is too bad that we didn’t keep our name, though it was neccessary to distinguish that God is for everybody.

  • Kathy

    A wise lady is Rabbi Hausman…”sometimes organized religion pushes people away.” Imagine the worry of cradle Catholic Mom not seeing her son married by his own denomination. Fortunately, the Lord knows our worries and wipes them away. To all of us, it was not an issue to even try to negotiate with the Catholic church. The family that prays together stays together. If bride is Methodist, chances are likely that children will be raised so. Belief in the same one Lord. A Catholic wedding without a Mass? Sounds like a reception without cake and champagne. Convert bride to Catholicism? Only when bride initiates the possibility. Bride is already steeped in a deep faith and lives it fully and actively. Required belief in the real presence? He is there whether bride believes or not. No pressure by Catholic church to convert? Perhaps, but pressure to agree to raise children Catholic. Ask the many couples who opted for ecumenical weddings. Who needs guilt? Much more joyous to allow ordained minister/close friend to conduct ceremony in sacred environment. Marriage not recognized by the Catholic church? Perhaps not, but recognized by and cradled in the hands of God….”wherever two or three are gathered, there too am I.” Sounds like a sacrament. No war, but perfect wedding. Two became one. Compliant with Lord’s rules, but not necessarily Roman rules. Catholicism is molded into us, not branded onto us. The Lord was there front and center that sunny day, too bad a Catholic priest couldn’t have been. P.S. Nana can provide exposure of Catholicism to children if need be.

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