Can Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Marry Folks from Other Churches? Can They Date Them?by -
I’m often asked if a members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints can be romantically involved with someone of another faith. The purpose of this article is to provide some helpful clarification.
Can a church member marry someone of another faith?
There are a number of complicating factors that lead most practicing members to marry other members of their own faith. First, the “church” is not just a religion; its also a culture. Significant cultural differences can complicate a marriage, even when a couple is sincerely in love. Cultural complications may explain why studies show that marriages between church members and those of other faiths have remarkably high rates of divorce. On the other hand, marriages between two members of the church, especially when realized in one of our temples, have remarkably low rates of divorce. Cultural unity in marriage is very important.
Additionally, marriage plays a much larger role in our theology than in the theology of other Christian religions. While all Christian religions emphasize the importance of marriage, in our church marriage is considered essential for progression in the next life. Specifically, special marriage ceremonies realized in our temples are essential. These ceremonies can only be performed when both the husband and wife are properly prepared. Preparation includes, among other things, baptism and full participation in the LDS faith. Consequently, most practicing church members choose to marry members of their own faith for theological reasons as well.