PREPARATION, PRAYER, AND PAPER WORK
Disclaimer! Don’t book anything yet!!
Even though you might naturally have an idea about when and where you might want to be married, do not book any venues or make deposits until the local parish church that is preparing you for marriage has gathered and “rubber stamped” all the necessary paperwork required.)
How much does it cost?
Answer: It doesn’t have to cost anything! All that is required is that the couple be free to marry and have two witnesses. Marriage ceremonies that take place during our regular Sunday Mass schedule not only take away any added financial burden to you, but come with a packed church, music and much encouragement to all. If, however, you are thinking of using the church outside of regular Mass times, arrangements will naturally have to made to prepare the building and secure the attendance of necessary personnel.
Christ Himself has defined for Christians our understanding and practice of the married life. Towards this goal are a number of steps that are taken through various meetings with our church ministers.
- Discerning the influences that have shaped one’s understanding of marriage and family life. What has been my experiences of marriage from my family circle and friends?
- Reflecting on being a Christian witness of love and sacrifice through the lens of Christ as a Bridegroom giving His life to His Bride (the People of God). How does my present life and lifestyle reflect my openness to making daily sacrifices for the sake of deepening my love of God and the eternal life He promises?
- A practical and honest assessment of your readiness to make a life-long permanent commitment. Do I need healing and closure from past relationships that have harmed or continue to distract me from preparing to give myself totally, in true freedom, to another person for the rest of my life?
During the course of her 2000 years, the Catholic Church has seen the rise and fall of countless empires, governments and political systems. Because of this and towards the common good of everyone, the Church has her own legal understanding of the rights and responsibilities of those entering into a marriage relationship, particularly for her own children.
- Contact the church where you were baptized and ask them to send you an updated record of your baptism record. Although a Catholic may have received other sacraments such as Confirmation and First Holy Communion in other churches, typically the church of your baptism is always informed and your record is kept up to date.
- Have you entered into a past marriage relationship with anyone else? If so, secure a copy of the legal license and the final divorce or annulment papers. If you had entered a past marriage that was presumed factual from a Catholic understanding, it will be necessary to test its validity first before proceeding.
Weddings for Outside Parties
Typically, weddings at St. Margaret’s are officiated by our parish clergy for members of this Church only. If you live in and attend another parish, please complete your local marriage preparation program there. Although clergy from St. Margaret’s are not available to witness your marriage, your own clergy are most welcome to do so here following our parish requirements for wedding planning. If this be the case, once you’ve begun your marriage preparation in your home parish, please ask your priest or deacon who will be officiating at your wedding to call St. Margaret’s for the possibility of available dates.