| A first-timer's
guide to the altar
Contact your parish priest at least six months in advance of your proposed wedding date to set up a meeting.
Start your paperwork with the parish, which will include showing your ability to marry in the Catholic Church.
Age: minimum of 18 years (additional counseling sessions required for people between ages of 18-21)
Pre-Marital Investigation Form by priest/deacon/parish minister with bride and groom separately and under oath.
Proof of Baptism for Catholics and some form of proof for validly baptized non-Catholics.
Witness questionaire completed by parent.
Other properly completed paperwork sent to/received from other dioceses when marrying outside the bride or groom's diocese.
Set the date for the wedding and ensure your priest, family and witnesses are available.
Sign up as early as possible for parish or diocesan marriage preparation class(es).
Prepare with prayer and advice from friends and/or family members in good marriages for an intense and fruitful marriage preparation retreat/class(es).
Plan for a lifetime of love and care for your spouse and seek support for your marriage and continuing enrichment from your church community by staying involved in a parish.
Source: Mimi Streett, coordinator of Marriage & Family Life, Diocese of Oakland
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