We are glad that you chose our parish family in which to celebrate the sacrament of marriage and we look forward to working with you. Planning for your wedding involves careful consideration of all the details that will make it a beautiful and memorable day. Important as these details are, even more important is the preparation for your married life, which lasts much more than a day. It is with this in mind that the Church has formulated a marriage preparation policy, one which can assist you in being better prepared for both the wedding day and the marriage, the living of the sacrament.
We at Sacred Heart Parish hope this information is helpful and we will do all we can to assist you during this important process. We look forward to engaging all the steps of preparation with you and we hope that it will be an enriching and important process for you. Please feel free to ask any questions and to contact us as we engage upon this journey together.
Marriage Preparation Checklist
Your engagement is not only a time of sending invitations and preparing for a party, but a deepened time of discernment and sacramental preparation. Engagement has a specific and legitimate purpose. Through prayer and conversation you are preparing yourselves to commit to the religious vocation of Christian marriage.
You have a vocation, a call from God, that you are living out through your commitment to your spouse. God is the author of marriage and the vocation to marriage is written in the very nature of man and woman. God blesses the mutual love of husband and wife within marriage and names it as “good, very good” (Catholic Catechism 1603-1604).
The church takes the commitment between husband and wife so seriously that the Catholic Church considers the spouses to be the actual ministers of marriage. Through their mutual consent before the Church they confer upon each other the sacrament of marriage as ministers of Christ’s grace (CCC 1622).
Through conversations with the priest, meeting with a married couple as a mentor, attending a retreat, and prayerfully planning the liturgy you enter fully into this period of sacramental preparation.
As an engaged couple, you are already having many conversations. As you prepare to enter into marriage there are some “must-have” conversations on topics you care about. Through talking with the priest and the married mentor couple you will engage some of the following topics:
Engagement is the perfect time for some of these conversations. You won’t agree on everything, but explore with each other where you share concerns and where your opinions diverge. You may come to an impasse, but that is only an invitation for more conversation and perhaps more resources.
The preparation process begins with an initial conversation with the priest when you will reserve your date for the church. The process usually lasts 8 months to a year and culminates in the last week with a meeting with the priest, a rehearsal, and the ceremony itself. During the process itself, there are many opportunities for conversation, deepening your faith, asking questions, making choices and fully preparing to your mutual consent to the sacrament of Christian marriage. Welcome! Please contact us to begin the process!