Catholic Weddings

I'm scared to meet with our Priest because we already have Children

Both my fiance and I are practicing Catholics (he was baptized received 1st communion and reconciliation but doesn't remember being confirmed he's quite a bit older than I am so it was a long time ago) and have never been married but we have 4 year old twins together. I've been actively practicing Catholic (with a few short periods of drifting away from mass) for my entire adult life but we have children that we actually planned. We love each other and we made a colossal timing mistake but I would never call our children or desire for them a mistake. We also obviously live together and there is no way I or he is moving out of our family home prior to marriage separate bedrooms may be possible but I'm a stay at home mom and won't go back to work just to live away from my family for formality. Has anyone heard of a situation like this and how was it handled?

Re: I'm scared to meet with our Priest because we already have Children

  • So many questions...

    Have you been to church since your pregnancy/mommyhood?

    Do you want to get married in the Church?

    A priest's role is NOT to judge us, but guide us in our faith and help us on our journey with God. Children-especially 4-year-olds-aren't something you can hide away. You are a parent, Buckeye...I guarantee you there are scarier things you'll deal with in life than talking to your priest.

    He will walk you through the steps you and FI need to take. I am by no means an expert, so I don't know about the living situation with children, but you won't know until you ask.

    Be brave, Buckeye! You'll be fine.

    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • Thank you. I was going through a distancing phase when we got pregnant but I went as regularly as I could while pregnant and we've been weekly parishoners since then. Our children actually go to catholic school at our parish, I volunteer there a lot we go to church every Sunday and most people there think we are already married (I frequently get notes from the office addressed to Mrs. his last name I don't lie I let them know it's still Miss. my last name if face to face) except my children's teachers they know because I volunteer every week and we've discussed. I don't intend to hide them but I am worried we will be put through a lot of scrutiny but you're right there job is not to judge but to guide us. I still can't help but get nervous about talking to the priest because we obviously didn't follow the Churches teaching about this but we love our family and wouldn't take it back for a anything.
  • And yes a Church wedding is extremely important for me. We do not want a huge 400 person blow out but a regular family and close friends present wedding. But I do have a Catholic family, ie it's huge, and he has a decent sized family too so it won't be a super small 30 person mass.
  • Kitty is absolutely correct -- the priest's job is not to judge you, it is to guide you lovingly back to the church.  I'm not saying he'll fawn over some of the decisions you made, but this shouldn't prevent you from getting married, especially if your intention is to repent and live more in accordance with God's will.

    Are your kids baptized?  He will probably ask (I ask because I can't imagine that it didn't come up that you weren't married when you signed up to baptize them).

    As for the living separately, you will probably be asked to live chastely, which might even mean separate bedrooms.  Obviously this might be a little different because your children, at four, are old enough to understand that Mommy and Daddy sleep in the same bed and might ask questions if suddenly one of you is sleeping on the couch.  However, it might be a wonderful opportunity to introduce this church teaching to them (and the priest might have some suggestions for explaining that to your kids).  Like Kitty, I'm not an expert, and this is a pretty new situation to me.

    Above all, don't be afraid!  Be glad that you are strengthening your relationship with Christ!



  • Yes they are baptized and we were honest with both parishes (they were baptized at my grandparent's church in another state and we went through the baptizmal class at our old parish not our current one we moved) and told them we were not married they didn't seem to care at all to be honest I was shocked that more of an issue wasn't made. But our previous Church is not going to be involved although we may go back home and have the wedding at my grandparent's church but it's still in another state so we need to do pre-cana at our home parish but which state we have the wedding in is the last thing on my mind just getting it done in the eyes of God and the Church is my primary concern at the moment.
  • vmj23vmj23 member
    Fifth Anniversary 1000 Comments 250 Love Its 5 Answers

    Me and my fiancee live together, since before we were engaged and the priest did not ask that we change our living situation.    And at our pre cana class there were 2 couples that already had children.  Don't be scared, the priest isn't there to judge you.    My cousin was also married in a Catholic church after having a child.  
    I was nervous to speak with the priest at first, because we lived together, we didn't go to church (we have since started going again, but still not every week)...but the Priest made us feel completely comfortable and it was such a sigh of relief after the initial meeting.  

  • Don't be afraid to talk to the priest at all.  I was alittle scared at our first meeting since FI and I live together.  Our priest took down his information and then mine.  When addresses were the same, he asked if it was for financial reasons, we said yup and he moved on.  Nothing else was said about it.  As the meeting went on we got into some other topics of the church and how FI was baptised but nothing else.  The priest was very helpful and explaining that at times the church had taken it's own path and been almost exclusive in some senses, that's not our role.  Our role is to be welcoming of everyone no mattter what they have done in their past, or thier current path.  He saw the church as a guide and he would be there to support us as we needed him, directing us on a good path.  He really put us at ease and FI is much more open to the church knowing that the priest isn't judging him because he choose not to practice in the past and is still deciding if he wants to practice in the future.   

  • Well I volunteered at my kids school today and I'm even more nervous now. The teacher let me know he is very strict and he has refused to allow parishioners to marry within the mass for similar circumstances. She gave me some good advice about how to go forward but now I'm terrified to meet with him. I called last Friday and he hasn't returned my call to set up a meeting.
  • Marrying within the mass vs without a mass distinction in this case makes no sense. That is not why that option changes.

    First, I'm not sure why there is a thought out there that priests don't deal with this all the time. and why there would be any entertaining an idea that you should regret your children.

    His job is not to make you comfortable about staying in sin (and if he does, then that is a problem). To love you would be to help you (you in general) stop doing things that are harmful to yourself and others. Living in separate households with children would most likely not be a wise decision for most, however, stopping committing serious sins that separate you from God IS a wise decision.

    Instead of being nervous about it, I suggest approaching with an attitude of reconciliation and honesty and humility.  Laying it out: This is our story and how we ended up this way right now, and we truly want a holy marriage and will do what it takes to make it so. This includes separate bedrooms, going to confession, going to mass weekly or more. Your humility in pursuing God and reconciliation with the church, and the fact that you already see the mistakes and wanting to go forward righteously will bypass the necessity of him needing to teach you that part. 

    After we break a window by throwing a ball in the house, we have to go to mom and dad and deal with the consequences.
  • In case anyone was wondering how this was handled we decided to get married back in Ohio where I grew up and found an AMAZING parish that has done nothing more than accept and impress us and make us feel totally comfortable. Truthfully I wish we could be parishioners there but I'm glad that they will at least let us get married there. Mass last Sunday was beautiful and made me want to move home and become a parishioner, even our twins said it was a beautiful Church! We did set the date at this Church last week when we were back home! We do, however, have to complete the pre-cana in our home dioceses and that has proven more difficult. Our Parish Priest would not return phone calls or emails for 3 weeks until I started calling every other day leaving a message for him but finally he returned my call and it seemed reluctant but he set up a date to meet. We plan to meet with him in a week and try to show him that our hearts are in the right place and that this is truly the best thing for our family. If that doesn't work and he is still uncomfortable and can't morally continue with our pre-cana we will ask if he will allow us to go to my old parish where I am technically still a parishioner, for whatever reason they never removed me from the list and still send envelopes to our old address, and I know they will not mind since that's where we did the children's Baptismal class and pre-work and they know our situation. I think we have it all squared away and a decent plan in place in case our current Priest is not comfortable with counseling us, I'm relieved!
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