Letter To My Goddaughter Marrying Outside Of The Church

Janet E. Smith

Last month I wrote a piece on Attending Sinful Weddings, which addressed the issue of attending weddings of those not living in accord with the Church teaching on sexuality.

Below is a letter I wrote to a loved one who is undertaking just such a wedding.

Dear Linda (and Ted),

I was very pleased that your father called the other night to see if there was some way we could work to get me to your wedding. I do want to be there! I am sorry you are upset about the conversation you and I had a few weeks ago. I just tried to be honest with you about my thinking and feelings; I definitely did not mean to cast any shade on your preparations for your special day.

I continue to puzzle about the right thing to do. I talk about it with my friends and they ask me why you do not want to get married in the Catholic Church, and I realize I do not really know why you have rejected Catholicism. I really wish you would tell me. I sincerely would like to understand your thinking.

Maybe you are doing a lot to prepare spiritually for your marriage and I am just not aware of it. I do not want to make assumptions that are false.

I often ask myself why I should not just accept the fact that you and I do not agree on some fundamentals and go to your wedding. You certainly do have a right to your own values and opinions.

But this is where life gets interesting and hard. We need to be able to agree to disagree, but we also need to stick to our guns when we believe fundamental truths are in danger and when we believe people we love are making bad choices.

We now live in a time where males can say they are females and participate in women sports. A male can marry another male and a female another female. In some places, laws are being written to allow several males and females to marry each other. Some say a baby in a womb is just a bunch of tissue. All of those values and opinions are a terrible distortion of reality and lead to all kinds of trouble in this world.

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