Marriage

Sacred Scripture begins with the creation and union of man and woman and ends with “the wedding feast of the Lamb” (Rev 19:7, 9). Scripture often refers to marriage, its origin and purpose, the meaning God gave to it, and its renewal in the covenant made by Jesus with his Church.  Man and woman were created for each other.

By their marriage, the couple witnesses Christ’s spousal love for the Church. One of the Nuptial Blessings in the liturgical celebration of marriage refers to this in saying, “Father, you have made the union of man and wife so holy a mystery that it symbolizes the marriage of Christ and his Church.”

The Sacrament of Marriage is a covenant, which is more than a contract. Covenant always expresses a relationship between persons. The marriage covenant refers to the relationship between the husband and wife, a permanent union of persons capable of knowing and loving each other and God. The celebration of marriage is also a liturgical act, appropriately held in a public liturgy at church. Catholics are urged to celebrate their marriage within the Eucharistic Liturgy.

~from the United States Catholic Catechism for Adults

PREPARATION

The parish of St. Frances Xavier Cabrini is here to assist you in preparing to live the sacramental marriage vocation. Marriage is central to the meaning of the Church. You are beginning a new call in the Body of Christ through your commitment in Christian Marriage. Our program of premarital preparation is designed to give you the best in guidance and support.

1a. If you are already civilly married, meet with one of the priests directly (325-4041).

1b. If you are not married, please call the parish office at least six months before you would like to get married (325-4041). One of the priests will gather initial information and guide you to the next step. You are required to take a marriage inventory and attend one of the following: a Pre-Cana at the Catholic Pastoral Center or attend several meetings with a trained married couple from the parish.

  1. Confirm the date for your wedding with the priest at 325-4041 to determine his availability.

The priests are available to celebrate the sacrament of marriage which oftentimes takes place within the context of Mass, however a deacon may also be available to preside (witness) marriages outside of Mass. Should you have a friend who is a priest or deacon, he is certainly welcome to preside at your wedding, provided he has the necessary permission and delegation from the pastor of St. Francis Xavier Cabrini.

  1. Confirm the date with the Parish Office (359-2700) to assure church availability.
  2. Contact one of the music directors to assure their availability (Amanda Mole).

WEDDING REHEARSAL

The rehearsal will usually take place the afternoon or evening before the wedding and all people taking an active part in the ceremony should attend.

OTHER

Obtain a new (issued within six months of your wedding) Baptismal Certificate from the parish where you were baptized—not an old family copy, but a new one issued just for your marriage. Once you are married, a notice will be sent to your church of baptism. They will make entry into your Baptismal Register there and a notation of your marriage will appear on all subsequently issued copies of your Baptismal Certificate.

Jesus teaches that a valid marriage can only be ended by death, so if one of you has a previous marriage and a still-living former spouse, you will need to show that your previous attempt at marriage was invalid, lacked something necessary for validity.  The process of doing this is called seeking an annulment of that marriage.  If one of you has a previous marriage that ended in divorce, you should discuss this with the priest/deacon at your very first meeting. Annulments take time and you cannot be married in the Church until any needed annulments are obtained and finalized.

WHERE DO WE GO TO GET OUR MARRIAGE LICENSE?

Marriage License Office:

Your marriage license must not be attained more than 10 days before the wedding date. The marriage license is valid only 10 days after it is issued.

Cost is recent years has been $20.00.

When applying for the marriage license, both the bride and groom must be present.

In New York State each must be at least 18 years old at time of application.  (There are some exceptions to this law.)