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a 'self-described Catholic witch'

By Diogenes (articles ) | Nov 02, 2009

The Washington Post story recounted a Halloween marriage ceremony, uniting "one self-described Catholic witch and one pagan." If you're like me that phrase made you shudder, wondering what sorts of grotesque liturgical abuses were involved.

Relax. The ceremony wasn't held in a Catholic Church-- or any other church, for that matter. The bride describes herself as a Catholic, and like the groom she is baptized and confirmed, but unlike some members of Congress she acknowledges that her beliefs today are not in line with those of the Church.

The Post reporter recognizes this, too. The term "Catholic witch" is clearly used with a sense of irony, as it should be; the reporter injects the term "self-described" to indicate that she's not responsible for the absurdity. Newspaper reporters are generally inclined to let their subjects describe themselves, and if I began styling myself as the Grand Duke of Freedonia, the papers would probably give me that title, with the same "self-described" disclaimer.

Now if we could only persuade reporters to use the same sort of language to expose the absurdity of a "self-described pro-choice Catholic."


Just by the way, the Post story about this unique wedding described...

... a 20-minute ceremony in an outdoor pavilion that combined Christian rituals -- the unity candle -- with pagan traditions, such as handfasting, an ancient practice in which the couple's wrists are bound with a rope.

Unity candle? Which Christian ritual might that be? Must be something pre-conciliar. I mean, way pre-conciliar.


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Show 2 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: Pogo - Nov. 02, 2009 9:48 PM ET USA

    Unity candles are pre-conciliar? Our daughter had one at her wedding, in a Catholic church. Are these not to be used?

  • Posted by: Wild Bill - Nov. 02, 2009 2:55 PM ET USA

    I have seen the unity candle done once at a (non-Catholic) friend's wedding and was quite impressed because it was intended to demonstrate the trinitarian nature of marriage - man and woman with their flames taken from and joined with the flame of God. I wouldn't recommend it as part of Catholic nuptials but the couple might do it at the reception to good effect.

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