Re: interracial marriages

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Posted by rania on May 20, 2002 at 08:17:43:

In Reply to: interracial marriages posted by melina on May 17, 2002 at 10:48:24:

hey melina,

I have been trying to find info on this myself. It seems that religion, not race, is the key factor. i tried a search on the interneed and found info from the Ukranian Orthodox church @

We have to make the distinction between interfaith, inter-ethnic and interracial marriages.
The Orthodox Church distinguishes between Christian and non-Christian interfaith marriages.
In the first case, the marriage of an Orthodox Christian to a non-Orthodox Christian
(Byzantine Rite Catholic, Roman Catholic, Anglican, etc.), the Orthodox Church normally will
sanctify the marriage. Orthodox Christians should know that they must be married in their
own Church if they are to remain in good standing with their Church, that is, if they wish to
continue to receive the sacraments in the Orthodox Church. However, in the second case, in
which an Orthodox Christian seeks to marry a non-Christian (Jew, Moslem, Hindu, Buddhist,
etc.), the marriage cannot take place in the Orthodox Church. Thus, persons who enter into
such marriages, in practice, excommunicate themselves.
A mixed marriage may be at once an interfaith and inter-ethnic marriage at the same time.
However, all inter-ethnic marriages are not necessarily interfaith marriages. For instance, if a
Ukrainian Orthodox Christian marries a Christian from the Greek, Antiochian, Russian,
Bulgarian, or Romanian Orthodox Church, the marriage is inter-ethnic, but not interfaith. Such
a marriage is perfectly acceptable from a religious point of view.
Interracial marriage takes place when the partners belong to two different races, such as when
a Caucasian and a Negro marry. From the point of view of canon law, the Orthodox Church
permits interracial marriages when both partners are Orthodox Christians. Often, however, an
interracial marriage is also an interfaith marriage. In that case, the rules and regulations
covering interfaith marriages hold true. [Adapted from: S. Harakas, Contemporary Moral
Issues, Minneapolis: Light and Life, 1982, p. 105-107.]

: my boyfriend is hindu, and i have been reading about
: some of the regulations for marriage within the orthodox
: church. nothing that i've read addresses hindu - greek
: weddings. does anyone know if we will have a problem?

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