Please not in accordance with HSE Covid-19 Level 5 restrictions weddings are permitted to take place but are limited to 10 guests. The Bride, Groom, 2 witnesses (Bride’s Maid & Best Man) and the Priest are not counted in this 10.
If you are planning to marry in the Parishes of Narraghmore & Moone – congratulations. Your desire to marry in Church is your invitation to Christ to be at the heart of your relationship. It is this invitation that sets Sacramental Marriage apart. Your wedding day is as special and as individual as you are. Everything about it should reflect your uniqueness, especially your ceremony. This is the one day in your lives when you have the opportunity to publicly express your love and make your own special promises and vows to each other. Planning your church marriage should begin with contacting the Parish Office to ensure that your desired date is available.
Fixing the Date
While you need only give three months notice of your intention to marry it is common practice for a couple to book the church a long time in advance. So it is important to contact the Parish Office to make sure that the church is available on the day you require. In cases where dispensations are required, a minimum of (6) six months notice of intention to marry is required by diocesan rules.
Like any major life decision, marriage requires thought and preparation. A Pre-Marriage Preparation Course is a useful way of taking time as a couple to reflect on the important life choice you are about to make. Courses are conducted by trained facilitators who explore the various aspects in preparation for the celebration of the Sacrament of Marriage. These courses are organised by Accord (the Catholic Marriage Advisory Agency). Click here for Course details.
The sacrament of Matrimony celebrates a couple’s commitment to share the whole of their life together and to show the love of God to each other, to their children and to others through their relationship. Christian marriage is the place where husband and wife, children, family and friends meet God.
The following practical information may be helpful
- Go to a priest in the parish of the bride at least THREE MONTHS before the date on which you plan to marry. The meetings of the couple with their priest are a key part of the preparation process. These meetings have taken on a new significance in recent times, because it can no longer be assumed that seeking a Church wedding is an expression of Christian faith on the part of one or both partners. These meetings are an opportunity for a couple to reflect on what Christian marriage asks of them.
- The priest will also begin the process of filling out Pre-Nuptial Enquiry Forms and advise you about the various documents that you need to collect. You will need to get a Certificate of Baptism from the parish in which you were baptised and a Certificate of Confirmation from the parish in which you were confirmed. These documents should be issued no less than six months prior to the date of marriage.
- If you have lived somewhere else, other than your present parish, since you were sixteen, then you will need to get a Letter of Freedom from each parish in which you lived for more than six months to state that you did not get married while you lived there. Any Parish Office or priest from the parish (or parishes) where you lived will supply you with this document. In the Parishes of Narraghmore and Moone we do not request a ‘Letter of Freedom’. Instead we ask that a member of your family or close friend complete a ‘Declaration of Freedom to Marry’ form. This is a form that is completed by a person close to you stating that you are free to marry – in other words have not been and are not currently married.
- The bishop’s permission is required for a Church marriage involving someone under 18. Christian marriage requires the capability for a mature commitment and therefore such permissions are only granted in exceptional circumstances.
- Freedom to marry: The rules governing freedom to marry in the Catholic church can be complicated. The best advice when one party has been married previously (either in a civil or religious ceremony) is not to make arrangements until the diocesan office has been consulted.
- Mixed Marriages: Special permissions are required for full church recognition of marriages between a Roman Catholic and a baptised non-RC or someone unbaptised. Applications are handled by the diocesan office once the priest of the catholic party has forwarded the standard paperwork.
- The marriage ceremony should normally take place in a church in the bride’s parish. If the couple have a good reason for getting married elsewhere, the bride should inform a priest in the parish where she is now living to give her the necessary Letter of Permission to get married outside the parish. Obviously, in this case, the couple will need to make arrangements for the use of the church in the parish where they intend to get married.
- Normally a priest from the bride’s parish officiates at the marriage ceremony, assuming that the ceremony takes place in the bride’s parish. If you wish to have some other priest (e.g. a relative or friend) officiate, inform the priest in the parish where the ceremony is to take place and he will give the necessary authorisation. In Civil Law, it is now a legal requirement for the solemniser (the priest who officiates at the marriage) to be on the ‘List of Solemnisers’ submitted by each local Bishop to the Registrar-General.
- Ask the priest who is to officiate at your wedding to help you with the task of creating your marriage ceremony. There are a variety of prayers, blessings, readings, etc. Read through these together and choose the ones you prefer. Choose the person(s) who will read at Mass, person(s) to read the Prayer of the Faithful and the people to bring up the gifts at the Offertory. Rehearse the ceremony in church with the priest before the wedding day.
- To celebration of the Sacrament of Marriage does not require the celebration of Eucharist (Mass). While it has been generally the custom, it may not always be appropriate for example in a “mixed” marriage or when a couple are not regularly practising. Some couples today find the celebration of Marriage without the Eucharist, to be more appropriate for them. Please talk to the priest about this option.
- Marriages on Sundays, Holydays and some special Church celebrations (Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, St. Patrick’s Day, Holy Thursday, Good Friday, Holy Saturday, Feast of All Souls) are not permitted in the Archdiocese of Dublin.
All information regarding Church marriages is available from the Parish Office at +353 59 862 3154.