Presentation on theme: "Interfaith Marriage Workshop “Share the Dream” Family Conference Saturday 16 th April, 2011."— Presentation transcript:
Interfaith Marriage Workshop “Share the Dream” Family Conference Saturday 16 th April, 2011
Presenters David Schütz Executive Officer Ecumenical and Interfaith Commission Denise Lacey Manager Marriage and Relationship Education Unit CatholicCare
Panel Members Anja Tanhane (Zen Buddhism) David Glenister (Christian, currently attends Anglican church) Marc Marantz (Jewish) Elizabeth Marantz (Catholic) Cameron Irvine (Catholic) Prasana Prapoo (Hindu)
Program A brief introduction by David Panel Discussion with Denise Group participation in discussion Concluding remarks
“Interfaith Marriage”? A marriage in which the between partners belonging to two distinctly different religions Distinguished from a marriage from two separate traditions within a particular religion (eg. “Interchurch Marriage”) A more accurate description than “mixed marriage” In canon law, referred to as “disparity of cult”
Challenge of Interfaith Marriage All marriages have challenges that need to be worked through Interfaith marriages have specific challenges which when approached positively can bring spiritual blessing to the marriage
“Interfaith Marriage”? “In many countries the situation of a mixed marriage (marriage between a Catholic and a baptized non-Catholic) often arises. It requires particular attention on the part of couples and their pastors. A case of marriage with disparity of cult (between a Catholic and a non-baptized person) requires even greater circumspection.” Catechism of the Catholic Church, §1633
“Interfaith Marriage”? “Practical experience and observations obtained in various dialogues between representatives of churches and ecclesial communities, indicate that mixed marriages frequently present difficulties for the couple themselves, and for the children born to them, in maintaining their Christian faith and commitment and for the harmony of family life. For all these reasons, marriage between persons of the same ecclesial community remains the objective to be recommended and encouraged.” Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, The Directory for the Application of the Principles and Norms of Ecumenism, (1993), §144
“Interfaith Marriage”? "In all marriages, the primary concern of the Church is to uphold the strength and stability of the indissoluble marital union and the family life that flows from it.“ Ecumenical Directory (1993), §144
Interfaith Marriage: What model? Boy meets girl, girl meets boy, they fall in love, they decide to marry But they belong to different religious communities and traditions The couple could work out religious issues as a result of proactive reflection and decision… …or a more laissez-faire approach The possibilities may be outlined in five basic models, in which there are an infinite number of variations in reality These five models are suggested by Adapted from "Interfaith, Intercultural and Interracial Marriage" (http://www.stayhitched.com/interfaith.htm), which in turn was based on Joel Crohn, Mixed Matches: How to Create Successful Interracial, Interethnic, and Interfaith Relationships, (Ballantine Books, 1995)http://www.stayhitched.com/interfaith.htm
Single Faith One partner agrees to convert to the beliefs, traditions and rituals of the other partner. This model presumes a strong faith tradition on the part of one partner and a readiness of other partner to journey fully into that faith tradition
Predominant Faith The couple agrees to follow (and to raise the children in) one or the other of the two religions… …and yet tries to honour the beliefs and traditions of the other partner in a selective, but relatively less significant manner.
Dual Faith The couple attempts equally to observe (and to raise the children in) the beliefs, traditions and rituals from both partner’s religious background. This presumes a strong adherence of each partner to their own faith tradition, but also a great openness to the tradition of the other partner
Multi Faith The couple chooses to adopt spiritual beliefs, traditions and rituals from a variety of sources, including those outside the religions of their families of background. This model presumes a high value placed on “spirituality”, but no strong adherence to either of the background religions on the part of either partner.
No Faith The couple chooses (either deliberately or by default) to take a non-religious approach to life, which involves minimal practice of religious beliefs, rituals and traditions. This model presumes no strong adherence to religion on the part of either partner regardless of their religious background.
Some Challenges Understanding, appreciating and practicing one’s own religion / the other partner’s religion Raising the children Life-cycle ceremonies Acceptance by one another’s family and religious community The possibility of growth or change in faith – eg. deepening, conversion, or loss of faith Forming a spiritual unity despite differences