Non-church tax payer and church wedding back home

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Hi there,

 

I'm getting married to my German boyfriend in Ireland next summer. I'm a baptised Catholic but I don't pay church tax in Germany.

My boyfriend is a (paying member) of the Lutheran church.

 

I'd like to get married in my home parish in Ireland but I'm worried that I'll have problems due to the fact that I'm not a member of Catholic Church in Germany - to get married in a Catholic Church in Ireland you are required to get some forms filled out by the parish you currently live in (which for me would be a parish in Frankfurt). I can't imagine a priest here being willing to fill out these forms if I'm not a member of the German Catholic Church.

 

Did anyone have a similar issue? Any suggestions how to get around it?

 

Thanks!

 

P.S. Please let's not get into a discussion as to why I want to have a church wedding if I'm not paying church tax..

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I got married to my (nearly ex-) German husband in a CofE church in England.

At the time he paid church tax here in Germany, and I have never paid church tax.

We actually ended up taking over all of the "recommended" paperwork, which actually cost quite a lot of money to get, and nobody even asked to see it!

I don´t think you´ll have a problem!

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Why not just have a chat with your old Parish Priest? There are all sorts of reasons you could use for not formally establishing yourself in a Frankfurt parish: language, culture, still adapting to life in general. If the Irish Priest asks about the German Church tax, say it was an administrative foul-up on your end. ;)

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Well I am not a church goer and have never paid church tax so my information might not be valid.

 

However my Spanish friend is catholic and has had this issue with the church tax for years. She says if she stops paying she is officially 'leaving' the catholic faith and it is put on her records back in Spain, Rome, goodness knows where I have no idea!

 

So I am assuming if you have 'left' your faith then that is the answer, you cannot have a catholic wedding. I don't think there would be any way around it. If you are a resident in Germany and not a member of German catholic church then you are no longer a catholic.

 

I know this seems absurd but to be honest I think this rule is fair enough. Lots of people complain about the church taxes but via my scout group I have seen a fair bit of that money being used to help underprivileged kids have things they normally couldn't have/do. So I think if you are of that faith you should abide by the laws of that faith in the country where you live. Surely that is the idea of being a good christian after all? Plus the church taxes are hardly a lot and are a salary percentage so no question of who is affording what and so on.

 

However you could try and have a chat with your old parish priest and see what he says.

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If the Irish Priest asks about the German Church tax, say it was an administrative foul-up on your end.

Since we are talking about religion...what happened to "you shall not lie"? ;)

 

@OT: Are you sure, that you are not imagining problems? As Bipa said: Just talk to the people at your parish and they'll tell you, what you need and if there is a way around it. I wouldn't sweat too much about any paperwork you might need from the church in Frankfurt - worst case I can imagine is, that they'll welcome you with open arms and happily receive your payments of church tax in the future. ;)

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I wouldn't sweat too much about any paperwork you might need from the church in Frankfurt - worst case I can imagine is, that they'll welcome you with open arms and happily receive your payments of church tax in the future.

 

Oh to add to my post above, if this is what you plan to do then I don't think that is a problem at all. I was assuming you didn't want to start paying the church tax though...

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Register as a church tax payer here, pay the taxes for a year (consider it a charitable donation), have your dream wedding, deregister.

 

A Jesuitical solution, if you like, but one that fulfills your needs.

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The CofE example is a bad one. The CofE home parish is obliged to marry anyone from there of any faith or none who wishes it. OK that might technically not apply to people living abroad but is a symbol of the CofE's relative openness.

 

A civil or Lutheran wedding in Ireland is not an option?

 

I suspect that if you explain to your priest he may do what he can to get you married, after all from his point of view the more contact with the church you have the better. But he will have paperwork to get past. Do you attend services in Ireland when you visit? Could they register you for the marriage in the address of you parents in Ireland?

 

Interesting that it is not an issue for the church that your husband is a protestant, will he have to be quizzed on brining up any children as Catholics?

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My husband is Catholic and I'm Lutheran, I pay taxes he has never payed any here (his company took care of all his tax stuff when he moved over). We're getting married in a Catholic Church in June. We've had our first meeting with the Catholic Church (our 'home' parish, with which we haven't had anything to do til now). So far, we've not been asked anything about taxes at all, just baptism and confirmation certificates. I was really worried about it before too, but as yet it doesn't seem to be an issue. Fingers crossed it doesn't become one.

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But why would it be a problem for you? You're paying the Catholic church tax and getting married in a Catholic church! That means your name is entered into the "shepherd's flock" book but Sparkles' name is entered into the "sinners" ledger. How does a sinner get a Catholic church wedding is the question.

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I don't know about the tax issue, but I'm pretty sure that (in Ireland at least) your husband will have to do the pre-wedding course - a series of lectures about the duties required of him including a vow to bring up the children in the Catholic faith.

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@ MrNosey: Nope, I pay church tax to the Lutheran Church, not to the Catholic Church (as I'm not Catholic!) My husband is the Catholic one and he does not pay Church tax (and we're getting married in a Catholic Church), so essentially the same as in OPs case, except that we're getting married in Germany.

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@ MrNosey: Nope, I pay church tax to the Lutheran Church, not to the Catholic Church (as I'm not Catholic!) My husband is the Catholic one and he does not pay Church tax.

 

Sorry, I misread... So, why get married in Catholic church and not in a Lutheran?

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Because I don't really care which Church I get married in and half of my family and most of my husband's family are Roman Catholic and the Church is conveniently located (closer to reception than the protestant Church), so why not?! We were both open to choice of Church (whether Catholic or Lutheran) and just went with the best option.

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So I think if you are of that faith you should abide by the laws of that faith in the country where you live.

 

Nope, not in my view. I abide [badly] by the laws of the faith in the country where I was born and baptised and became a member. In Canada there is no Church tax and so I refuse the whole concept of paying a Church tax as a requirement of membership.

 

German emeritus professor of canon law, Hartmut Zapp has been battling the notion of German Church tax and the weird way that the Church in Germany is both a religion and a public corporation. He won the first round when the Administrative Court in Freiburg ruled in his favour on July 15, 2009. The Church then won an appeal on May 4, 2010 in the Higher Administrative Court, Baden Wuerttemberg. The appeals court ruled that the lower court was in error in deciding rules of membership and advised Zapp to take it up with the Vatican. He is now in the process of doing so.

 

 

Since we are talking about religion...what happened to "you shall not lie"?

 

You realise that isn't one of the ten commandments, eh? :P

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the Church is conveniently located (closer to reception than the protestant Church

 

If only someone had mentioned this point during the wars of religion, there would have been no need for Martin Luther or the Spanish Inquisition at all.

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Well, luckily Rainking we've moved away from those times. The Churches we visited even offer something called a ökonomische Hochzeit, both Protestant and Catholic (a pastor/priest from each conducting it) and the Catholic Church and Protestant Church work closely together now (e.g. frequently hold services together etc.), we were told. And, seeing as we we're a mixed couple - what should we have based our choice on?!

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We are both Catholic, don't pay church tax here and got married in my old church back in Scotland, albeit quite a few years ago (122 :rolleyes: to be precise). The issue of church tax simply never arose. Indeed, on mentioning it much later, I believe the clergy present were even surprised to hear that such a thing existed. There will be no problem if you just go to your old parish and say for romantic reasons we want to get married in Ireland. Good luck!

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We are both Catholic, don't pay church tax here and got married in my old church back in Scotland, albeit quite a few years ago (122 to be precise).

Now, I misread something already this morning but...

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