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Dating outside catholicism

In fact, the very first wedding I ever performed, over 30 years ago, was a Catholic-Jewish celebration. Not too long ago, it was very uncommon for people to marry outside of their religion. In fact, there was a time when even a marriage between an Irish Catholic and an Italian Catholic was frowned upon. Today it is very common to find our children wanting to marry someone of a different faith.

Unfortunately, they don’t appreciate how these matters may crop up later to present very difficult challenges.

For example, many people begin to rediscover the importance of a faith tradition when they start having children. The wedding ceremony, which in some ways is less important than the issue of children, should reflect the traditions of both because both are involved.

This is sometimes more difficult for the Jewish partner than the Catholic, because on this issue the Catholic Church allows great freedom.

(I fully empathize with my Jewish colleagues on this because it is easy for the Catholic Church, with 1 billion members, to be liberal on this point in comparison to the Jewish community with 15 million.) For the Catholic, the ceremony can take place in a non-religious setting, and a priest is not even required.

It is even possible for the marriage to be done simply by a civil minister, and the church will still recognize it as a valid marriage. While there are some rabbis who will celebrate a joint ceremony, most rabbis of local congregations will not.

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