The Catholic Priest and the Jewish Wedding

December 19th, 2012 Rabbi Lawrence P. Seidman
Rabbi, Jesuit Priest, and wedding couple all hold hands.

The Catholic Priest Helped

I recently did a beautiful interfaith wedding at the La
Costa Hotel and Golf Club in Northern San Diego County. The couple has a very
close relationship with a Catholic priest.  They think of him as a friend and
mentor and wanted him involved in the wedding.

 

He elected not to work though the Roman Catholic Church
process.  He would have needed approval to officiate outside of his home
parish, outside of a church building, and in an interfaith wedding.  He elected
to not coofficiate.  He did not wear his clerical collar and made it
clear that he was not receiving the vows.

 

The wedding was a Jewish wedding with me, the rabbi, as the
only officiant.  We followed the usual format of a Jewish wedding from having a
chuppah at the beginning to breaking a glass at the end.

 

But that did not mean that he could not participate in the wedding.
The priest wore a business suit, and we both gave separate, meaningful short
talks to the couple.  And he joined me in bestowing a blessing on the new
couple.

 

Here is a picture if us giving the blessing.   We don’t have
to co- officiate to give the wedding and the newly married couple the spiritual
strength of two religious traditions.

 



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