Once a couple have decided to get married in Church, they need to contact one of their local priests. Why? So that marriage preparation can begin. Three months notice must be given to the Church before a marriage can take place. Three months notice must also be given to the State. Generally though, 6 to 12 months is preferred so that marriage preparation and marriage papers can begin. A pre-marriage course is to be undertaken by the couple. Accord, the Catholic Marriage Care Service runs courses throughout the diocese during the year, contact, www.accord.ie or (01) 4784400 / Killester.
Before confirming the date and booking of hotel / reception, a couple should make sure that the church is free. If the bride is getting married in her own parish one of the priests of the parish will be happy to preside at the wedding ceremony. However if a wedding is to take place in another parish, the couple should make sure that they have a priest who will celebrate the marriage or that the priests of that parish will preside at the ceremony. Marriage Papers that a couple need to get are, ‘Baptism and Confirmation certs, (issued within 6 months of the wedding taking place), Letter of Freedom, pre-marriage course cert.
A variety of prayers and readings are offered for the wedding ceremony. These can be chosen from the prescribed liturgical books. Readings are to be taken from the Word of God. A number of options with regard to the wording the marriage vows are also available. The couple should begin choosing the Readings for their marriage in good time. Readings should be chosen, not because one likes it but for the reason of God’s message for the couple. The Word of God chosen for a marriage are important. The Words that should be reflected upon by the couple, particularly on their anniversary each year.
Often members of families and friends are chosen to assist at the wedding ceremony. Those chosen to proclaim the Word of God, should be practicing Catholics, who believe what they proclaim, they should be baptised and confirmed. Similarly others assisting at the ceremony should be practising their faith.
A variety of liturgical music is available to couples. Only liturgical music should be used for the ceremony. Secular songs have their place after the ceremony, not in the Church. Priests are happy to assist the couple in guiding them in their preparation.
Couples are asked to leave their flowers after the wedding. No tacks or blue tack or selotape is to be used on the Church Furnishing.
What you will need:
Notice of forthcoming marriages must be given to one of the priest of the parish 3 months in advance of the date of marriage. This makes it possible for the priest to help you make the necessary preparation and allow adequate time for the preparation on the necessary documentation.There are numerous regulations, both Church and State to be complied with in arranging a wedding. In the first instance you should talk to one of the clergy.
All the formalities are looked after in an official document called the Prenuptial Enquiry, which the priest must fill out with the couple.
You will need:
Bearing in mind that the preparation and celebration of a wedding involves considerable work for the priest, it is customary to give a donation to the priest on the occasion of your wedding. If the sacristan has to open the church and prepare it for a practice, for the florist and for the ceremony itself, it is only fair that they too be given some token of appreciation.
A standard administrative fee now exists for all, parishioner and non parishioner, who wish to use the facilities of the Church for their wedding.
C/o 71 Griffith Avenue, Marino, Dublin 3 Tel (01) 8338631 www.accord.ie. Confidential counselling by trained counsellors for people experiencing difficulties in their marriage. Fertility counselling, family planning and marital sexual therapy also available.