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Catholic Weddings

communion for non-catholics

althought my FI and are both Catholic and we'll be having a full mass for our wedding, we will have many guests who are not Catholic attending. my worry is that other Christians aren't aware that it's not appropriate for them to receive communion in a Catholic church, even though they would at their own church. do people know this rule? i don't want to be rude or hurtfull by saying something in the program? how have you girls dealt with this?!

Re: communion for non-catholics

  • edited December 2011
    You could print something in the program, or you could have your priest make an announcement before communion.
  • sheilainsalemsheilainsalem member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Our priest is very helpful for people who are in attendance that are not Catholic.  He makes a statement that all are welcome to come up for a blessing but only Catholics may receive Communion.  I and my daughter are the only Catholics in my family.  Talk to your priest, he will surely have an idea.
  • Calypso1977Calypso1977 member
    Knottie Warrior 2500 Comments 25 Love Its First Answer
    edited December 2011
    our priest made all sorts of announcements at our wedding to explain what was going to happen (it was a Latin mass which was foreign to many of our guests, even the Catholic ones).  in that, he issued the friendly reminder that only catholics in good standing may receive, but that anyone was welcome to come up for a blessing with their arms crossed.
  • edited December 2011
    There is usually a blurb in the misselette for most parishes. Copy that . My parish it says something about Those who are in full communion with the Catholic church are invited to communion. Those who are not may either go up and recieve a blessing by crossing thier hands in front of their body or may sit quietly and respectfully with their thought turned to world peach and the hope for the end or religious strife.
  • Riss91Riss91 member
    Eighth Anniversary 1000 Comments 25 Love Its Name Dropper
    edited December 2011
    Our priest did the same thing as Calypso's during his homily. He briefly explained the communion process and what it means to be in good standing and that all Catholics in a state of grace are welcome for communion. He said for those not taking communion to use that time for silent reflection and prayer.I think it is nice for the priest to say something because I have been to a few weddigns where non-Catholics feel pressured to follow the herd, thinking it's rude not to, when it is quite the opposite!
  • edited December 2011
    I would personally never announce it. Let them make the choice. If they don't want to because they don't believe in transubstantiation, then thats their choice. Its not, IMO, up to us to tell others not to take it.
  • edited December 2011
    Thank you for posting this question. I'm having the same issue. My family is not Catholic, I'm in the RCIA program at the moment and will be a Catholic by the time we get married. My FI's family is. I'm going back and for on having communion at all just for that reason. This clears it up that it really shouldn't matter, and people will respect it. Thanks!
  • banana468banana468 member
    Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    edited December 2011
    I've seen it stated in programs (not my favorite thing).  If you feel it necessary to state something, go for the priest inviting all Catholics in good standing to recieve - as technically it's not open to all Catholics - just those in good standing.
  • Calypso1977Calypso1977 member
    Knottie Warrior 2500 Comments 25 Love Its First Answer
    edited December 2011
    i agree with Irish that the bride and groom and lay persons in general should not be making statemetns about who should or shouldnt receive.  the priest however, IMO, has complete right to say something since he is the one handing out communion, and he has a duty to make sure that, to the best of his knowledge, he is not giving the sacrament to someone who has no business receiving it.
  • edited December 2011
    hi girls! i really appreciate all of your replies. i think you're all right, we'll talk to our priest and just have him make an announcement to invite good standing Catholics to receive. i really didn't want to offend anyone so i think that's the best solution!  thanks again!
  • edited December 2011
    my sister's wedding was yesterday; he announced that all catholics may come forward if they can receive communion, and anyone else who'd like a blessing can come up wtih their arms crossed, everyone else was free to stay seating.  i cannot imagine why anyone not of that religion would think to go up there?  your priest likely has soemthing he can put into the program, but i think its unnecessary.
  • kelmcgeekelmcgee member
    100 Comments
    edited December 2011
    Our priest is inviting those guests who are not catholic to receive a blessing.  He is just going to explain it so I"m not going to put it in the program.
  • edited December 2011
    "I would think most people would know."You'd actually be surprised how many don't... which is why at events like weddings I think it's a good idea to have a tactful announcement of some sort.
  • Calypso1977Calypso1977 member
    Knottie Warrior 2500 Comments 25 Love Its First Answer
    edited December 2011
    ditto, gulf. i actually knew people that said it was ok for Episcopalians to receive Catholic eucharist since the two faiths are so similar in other ways.  also, many dont understand that its the body and blood of christ - they think its merely symbolic, and "just a wafer".  of course, if one thinks it "just a wafer" they wouldnt see that its wrong to receive it, since other faiths where it is "just a wafer" and purely symbolic, offer it to everyone.
  • edited December 2011
    Most of my husbands family is Protestant, yet we had a full mass (both Catholic).Prior to the Eucharist the priest welcomed all Catholics to receive communion and non-Catholics to receive a blessing.  It worked just fine and everybody was involved, both Catholic and non-Catholic.
  • edited December 2011
    i cannot imagine why anyone not of that religion would think to go up there? your priest likely has soemthing he can put into the program, but i think its unnecessary.When I was in high school, I tried to receive communion at a Catholic church even though I was not Catholic.  In most Protestant churches, anyone who normally receives communion in their home church, even if they are a different denomination, can receive communion.  I used to always take communion at Baptist churches though I attended a Lutheran church, and it didn't really occur to me that this wouldn't hold true in the Catholic church.People actually pulled me out out of the way and it was horribly embarrassing for multiple people involved.  I have since seen it printed in programs, and I think that, and/or an announcement, is a good idea to prevent this sort of situation.  It's not as obvious as you might think; people who aren't Catholic aren't automatically familiar with Catholic traditions.
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  • edited December 2011
    hi LauraT, your situation is exactly why i asked the question! i agree with everyone's suggestion to have our Priest make an announcement to invite Catholics for communion and everyone else for a blessing, instead of writing anything in the program. that way everyone will know what's going on without making anyone feel uncomfortable or left out.
  • edited December 2011
    OP - That's why I added my story, for some outside perspective.  I'm sure you'll guests will either appreciate it if they're not Catholic, or not even notice/think twice about it.  I don't usually post on these boards (for obvious reasons), but I lurk since FI's family is Catholic.  I thought this was a good opportunity to add something for once. :)
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  • edited December 2011
    My family isn't Catholic, FI's is. When I explained to my sister that I couldn't decided whether to have communion or not, she asked why. I told her that in the Catholic church, only Catholics in good-standing can receive communion therefore most of my family wouldn't be able to receive. She goes to a different church (can't remember denom.) and she said she receives communion there and would never have thought she wouldn't be able to receive it at my wedding. She said she didn't think it mattered. Since I'm still in the RCIA, and haven't received communion yet, it's hard to explain it to her. Considering that was from  my own sister, I'm very nervous that people will go up anyways and receive because they do at their own church. Even being told only Catholics can.
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