Congratulations on your forthcoming wedding. This is a wonderful and exciting time for not only the couple but the whole family. To help make the preparation for your marriage easier, below are some guidelines to help with preparation of your wedding.
1. At least six months notice of intended marriage should be given.
2. The priest is both witness for the Church and for the State. Certain documentation is required – the essential items being a Birth Certificate and a Baptismal Certificate. The latter must be less than six months old. Also, your drivers licence or passport (photo id) will be required.
3. Couples will be required to attend a recognised premarital education course, usually either one conducted under the auspices of Centacare, or one of the other courses which the church runs. An alternative would be to follow an Engaged Encounter weekend. A certificate showing the completion of the marriage preparation course would need to be provided. Acceptable courses are run at:
- Smart loving – Ph: 9319 6280
- Of Life and Love – Ph: 9307 8400
- Catholic Care – Ph: 9509 1234
4. Nuptial Mass is encouraged for practising Catholics. Non-Catholic partners are welcome to have their own clergymen share in the ceremony.
One final point that needs to be made. The incidence of divorce is so widespread that many people are likely to meet formerly married persons and may eventually wish to marry them. The former marriage cannot simply be ignored. An annulment of the former marriage may be possible. This takes a certain amount of time even in the simplest case. Long before such a marriage is even seriously considered, the priest should be contacted. Remember too that a marriage of persons who are not Catholic is a valid marriage in the eyes of the Church. The fact that they are not Catholics does not give them the right to divorce in the Church’s understanding of the sacrament.