Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.
At its most basic level, marriage is a union between a man and a woman for the purpose of procreation and mutual love and support.
In the Catholic Church, marriage is considered to be more than a natural institution. It was elevated by Christ Himself, in His participation in the wedding at Cana (John 2:1-11), to be one of the seven Sacraments. A marriage between two Christians, therefore, has a supernatural element as well as a natural one.
The ministers of the Sacrament of Marriage are the spouses themselves, because the mark - the external sign - of the Sacrament is not the wedding Mass, but the marriage contract itself. This does not mean the wedding license that the couple receives, but the vows that each spouse makes to the other. As long as each spouse intends to contract a true marriage, the Sacrament is performed.
The effect of the Sacrament is an increase in sanctifying grace for the spouses, a participation in the divine life of God Himself.
If you are planning to be married at Our Lady of Fatima Parish, please contact the pastor at the Parish Office at least 8 months in advance of your proposed date. No wedding dates will be confirmed prior to the establishment of a couple's freedom to marry.
The Catholic Church teaches that marriage is the unique and special relationship, rooted in love, between a man and a woman. Marriage is a permanent and life-long commitment which is ordered toward the good of the spouses and the procreation and education of children. When marriage is between a baptized man and a baptized woman it is then a "sacrament"--reflecting the love between Jesus and his Bride, the Church.
When a Catholic marries a non-Catholic, the Catholic is to make the following promise: that he or she intends to do all that is possible to practice his or her Catholic faith and to baptize and educate the children born of the marriage in the Catholic faith.
To help build as strong a foundation as possible entering into marriage, a marriage preparation course is required which has the approval of the Catholic Church.
Marriage Preparation Requirements
To prepare for your marriage you are required to:
- Attend an approved marriage preparation course with either Catholic Family Services or Catholic Engaged Encounter.
- Meet with the Pastor to fill out and discuss the applicable pre-marital Church questionnaires/paperwork and government forms for marriage and to plan the wedding liturgy;
- provide copies of your baptism certificates: a) If you are a Roman Catholic the copy must be from within the last 6 months (obtained from the parish of baptism; b) If you are a baptized non-Catholic a photocopy of your certificate will suffice.
When planning your wedding celebration, please note:
- the marriage vows are those from the Roman Catholic Marriage Ritual;
- the signing of the marriage register documents takes place at the end of the liturgy;
- unity candles and other contemporary symbols are not part of the official Roman Catholic wedding liturgy, therefore it is better to use them at the reception;
- only approved classical or liturgical music (ie. from a parish hymnal) may be used and must be live (ie. no recorded music); an appropriate secular piece of music may accompany the recessional;
- a civil marriage license (valid for 90 days) must be purchased and submitted to the pastor when completing marriage paperwork;
- Catholics are invited and encouraged to celebrate the Sacrament of Reconciliation (Confession) as part of their preparation (e.g., 1-2 weeks before the wedding).
Please let the priest know immediately:
- if you have ever been married before, if you have any children, or if you are pregnant;
- if you are living together (Archdiocese of Regina guidelines recommend having a time of separation to emphasize the newness of the commitment in marriage);
- if you have Ukrainian ethnic roots in your family (especially on your father's side);
- if you have any history of depression, mental illness, alcoholism or other forms of addiction, or if there is any history of these in your family.
If you were previously married, you will need to present:
- a copy of the marriage certificate;
- a copy of the registration of marriage from Vital Statistics
- a copy of the divorce decree
- a copy of the decree of nullity (i.e., annulment) if one has been received;
- a death certificate if your former spouse is deceased.
Helpful Marriage Preparation Resources
- Archdiocese of Regina Marriage Guidelines
- Natural Family Planning/Serena Saskatchewan
- In the Name of Love: the Natural Approach to Family Planning