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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
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    North GA Mountains
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    Default Question for program wording for non-Catholics attending

    OK, I converted to Catholicism two years ago. While I've been to all types of weddings, I myself was very uncomfortable at Catholic weddings when I was younger because a) I didn't understand them, and b) was/was not told different things about what I could and could not do in terms of taking communion.

    I am the only person on my side of the family who is Catholic and I can't think of any old friends who are either. So I know that there will be a lot of people scratching their heads. Would it be appropriate to place in the program "Catholic Etiquette" on dealing with communion? Also, would you appreciate this if you are not Catholic and on the flip side would it offend you if you are?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
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    12,188

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    While I'm Catholic, I've never taken communion outside of the Catholic church - I always thought I wasn't allowed.

    If you wanted to put something in your program for communion, you could do something like:
    "Practicing Catholics are welcome to receive communion. Other guests may remain seated or receive a blessing by the priest."

    I've heard of people going up for communion, but keep their arms folded and the priest will bless them...

    Another thing to consider, just because people are Catholic doesn't mean they can receive communion (if you go by the old rules) if they haven't been to confession. I haven't been in awhile, so technically I am not practicing and can not receive communion.

    HTH!
    Kidlet 1 - 8/06
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  3. #3
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    Jun 2005
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    If I were attending a wedding held in an unfamiliar house of worship, I would not be offended by instructions on how to conduct myself and in fact would appreciate them!
    "If you bungle raising your children, I don't think whatever else you do well matters very much." ~ Jackie O.
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
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    NOLA
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    Default

    I'm Catholic but DH isn't. We still had a full mass for our ceremony, but the priest asked that we put the paragraph from the misselette in our program - he wasn't comfortable with announcing it during the mass but it was his duty to make sure that it was understood how it worked.

    My program was super-small, mostly just a mass booklet outlining the order of things. When it came to communion, I had a small * and at the end of the page I put the info he wanted in there. It was small enough to not scream out, but noticiable enough so that those who were unsure could see it and understand that because of the divides in the Christian church, non-Catholics could not receive communion.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    North GA Mountains
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    Default

    Thank you ladies for your help!

    Chimichanga, you're right about crossing your arms to receive a blessing (I did this when I was still converting) instead of communion. How do you let people know that or should I just "spread the word" among famiy members if they feel they want to somehow take part? This is one area that I'm not thrilled with the Church because I really think that we should be opening our arms for people in a place of worship not telling them they are (in a way) wrong. Oh well, dancing would be wrong in I was still Southern Baptist.

    BTB, glad you feel this way. I feel the same because growing up I had a lot of Jewish friends and learned so much from them. I always wanted to respect their religion when I went to their services and participated with their families during holidays.

    Aimee, I'm glad to know that this has been done. I hadn't thought about putting the order of mass in the program. I guess I thought I was just going to "list" things. Would it be too wierd to place something indicating when to sit, stand, and kneel? I was just thinking about how many people are going to be attending that are even familiar with a mass. I can count them on both hands.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
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    NOLA
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    Quote Originally Posted by Atlanta_eBride
    Thank you ladies for your help!

    Aimee, I'm glad to know that this has been done. I hadn't thought about putting the order of mass in the program. I guess I thought I was just going to "list" things. Would it be too wierd to place something indicating when to sit, stand, and kneel? I was just thinking about how many people are going to be attending that are even familiar with a mass. I can count them on both hands.
    I don't think it would be a problem at all. Considering my whole family and most of my side of the wedding party was Catholic, plus lots of friends and some family on DH's side was catholic, we figured that the ones who didn't know could follow along. But if you've got very few catholics, I think it woud be a good idea. If you're doing a mass booklet type program, you could just put it off to the side of what's going on, like they do in a misselette.

    I didn't want a huge involved program. I bought program stock from Target (it was just prefolded ecru stock with a pearl border) and then printed up an insert page on my printer that listed the mass order and the music. Printed our names and wedding date on the cover. Punched holes in it and bound it with ribbon. Super easy.

    Your church probably wouldn't mind if you borrowed a misselette to get the order of things. Also, the book that you get at precana "Together for Life" or something also helps you lay out the order of the ceremony. Best of luck!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
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    DC
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    The priest will usually indicate when it's time to sit or stand, and only those practicing are required to kneel, so they can decide on their own. I think if you wanted to copy the paragraph from the missalette into your program, that would be fine, or you could just put in parentheses "See page ___ in missalette for guidance on receiving Holy Communion."

    At my dad's funeral mass, the priest announced, "All practicing Catholics in a state of grace with the Church may now step forward to receive Communion. All others remain seated." The Protestant members of my family were SO offended to be "called out" like that, and some of them came up just to spite the priest. Personally, I think many practicing Christians already know the rules, and it's up to their own conscience whether they want to come up. At my wedding, many of the Protestant guests received Communion, and I know they knew that they weren't technically supposed to, but I figured it was their decision. If you don't have many practicing Christians, though, I could understand going out of your way to provide an explanation.

    I also put the order of the Mass in my program. Let me know if you want me to post it - we did it very simply.
    Find Me on LJ
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