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Bahá’i Marriages:

The Bahá’i faith, like all religions, has specific laws regarding marriage that believers must observe.  These laws are not just binding, they have beneficial effects to spiritual development to all involved when wholeheartedly followed.

·While Bahá’u’lláh has not made marriage a binding obligation, he has attributed to it such spiritual and social significance as no individual believer, under normal circumstances, can well be justified in disregarding it.  The Kitáb-i-Aqdas emphatically stresses its importance and defines its essential purpose, namely the procreation of children and their training in the Religion of God.   (Written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi, cited in The Compilation of Compilations, Prepared by the Universal House of Justice, 1963-1990, Vol. II, pp. 447-48, #2138).

·Sex relationships of any form, outside marriage, are not permissible. The proper use of the sex instinct is the natural right of every individual, and it is precisely for this very purpose that the institution of marriage has been established. (Written on behalf of Shoghi Effendi, cited in The Compilation of Compilations, Prepared by the Universal House of Justice, 1963-1990, Vol. I, p. 56, #145)

·The couple planning marriage should contact the Local Spiritual Assembly once they decide to marry so as to have any questions answered and laws or requirements affirmed about a Bahá’i marriage..

·Both individuals must be at least 15 years of age to have a Bahá’i wedding.  Both parties must consent to the marriage.  (Bahá’u’lláh, the Kitáb-i-Aqdas, p. 42)

·Consent of all living parents is required for a Bahá’i marriage.  This applies whether the parents are Bahá’is or non-Bahá’is, divorced for years or not.  This law is intended to strengthen the social fabric, to knit closer the ties of the home, and to place a certain gratitude and respect in the hearts of the children. (Shoghi Effendi, cited in Notes of the Kitáb-i-Aqdas, p. 207)

·Two witnesses may be chosen by the couple or by the Spiritual Assembly, but must in any case be acceptable to the Local Spiritual Assembly. (The Universal House of Justice, cited in Lights of Guidance: A Bahá’i Reference File, p. 389, #1296) 

·The only requirement for a Bahá’i marriage ceremony is that the bride and groom, before the two witnesses, must state, “We will all, verify, abide by the Will of God.”  (The Universal House of Justice, cited in Lights of Guidance: A Bahá’i Reference File, p. 389, #1296)

·The Bahá’i ceremony should not be held in the place of worship of another religion.  Forms of the marriage of other religions should not be added to the simple Bahá’i ceremony.

·When someone who is already a Bahá’i knowingly violates Bahá’i marriage law, he is subject to loss of his voting rights.  (The Universal House of Justice, cited in Lights of Guidance:  A Bahá’i Reference File, p. 384, #1279) 

·If a Bahá’i has lost his or her voting rights, he or she cannot have a Bahá’i wedding until those rights have been restored.

·Polygamy is not permitted for Bahá’is.

 


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