An Irish woman's social, political and domestic commentary
Wednesday, April 07, 2004  

Sinners at mass

This article from today's IT worth quoting:

"The Bishop of Kerry last night said it did not make any sense "if a couple who are not believers ask for a church wedding. And one wonders if it makes any sense if a couple who do not go to Mass expect a Mass on the occasion of their wedding......People who do not share this faith will consider the sacraments meaningless rituals and empty rites and should not receive them. To do so would be a lie, a charade, an abuse," he said. "Disregard for the dignity and sacredness of the sacraments is also shown when people attach more importance to the clothes, presents and meals than to the spiritual and religious significance of Baptism, First Holy Communion, Confirmation, Marriage and, indeed, Ordination," the bishop said".

I think he's right. I've know one couple who were outraged when their local priest refused to marry them. They never went to mass or at least contributed to parish funds. They had been shacked up for years and had two children already, who they never brought to mass either. Then they were furious when the priest asked them why they wanted a wedding mass at all! The bride's mother, who did attend mass regularly, pleaded their case and in the end he gave them a blessing. But he also refused to allow them play "The wind beneath my wings". Common sense prevails.

Another unmarried non-believing couple I know brought their child for christening. The priest gently questioned them on their motives for bringing the child. They confessed that they were really doing it for the granny. The priest advised them to come back later when they felt they could actually give the child a 'proper' catholic upbringing.

I think the church has to be commended for these actions. All too often they are accused of oppressing people and forcing religion down everyone's throat. Usually there are hysterical parents wanting to take their children out of religion classes in school. Paradoxically my friends in the catering industry assure me that first communion is bigger than christmas for parties. I'd start with banning the communion dress and make them do it in their school uniforms.

posted by Sarah | 09:32 0 comments
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