Catholic Wedding Traditions

Catholic Wedding Traditions

In numerous cases the marriage ceremony is recognized both by the church and the state. Whilst the lawful procedures for a wedding are laid down by the state, most couples wish to adhere to established religious traditions to have their marriage blessed and accepted by their church as well. In the Catholic religion marriage is considered sacred and is one of the sacraments of the faith. The Catholic Church puts forth their own rules and regulations for a marriage to be recognized in the eyes of God and the church.

One of the more strict conditions of a Catholic wedding is the location. It is becoming fashionable for couples to wish to be married in an open-air ceremony but it is important to realize that an outdoor wedding would not be recognized by the Catholic Church. The object of holding your wedding ceremony is to demonstrate that you are asking for God’s blessing and influence in your marriage. For this reason the Catholic Church does not recognize any marriage ceremonies that are held outside of a church. Whilst you will still be legally married in accordance with all state legislation your marriage will not be recognized in the eyes of the Catholic Church.

A Catholic wedding does not have to include a Mass or Service as part of the wedding. The church will accept a union that is performed in a church and by a priest without the full Mass or Service. Many couples will opt for a full Mass or Service to have the chance to receive additional blessings during their special day. A wedding that includes a full Mass or Service can be a little over an hour long. A Catholic wedding that does not embrace a Mass or Service may be approximately 20 minutes long and usually include readings, hymns and psalms as well as blessings from the priest but does not include a celebration of the Eucharist.

Second marriages can prove very difficult when it is a Catholic wedding. Catholic wedding tradition requires that any previous marriages receive an annulment before the couple may be married in a Catholic church. Even if the previous marriage was not held in a church or recognized by the Catholic Church, they still require an annulment before they will carry out a marriage ceremony. In these circumstances a divorce decree is not sufficient. The previously married party will have to seek an annulment that verifies their previous marriage was not valid.

The music of a Catholic wedding ceremony is also a significant tradition. Whilst religious music is encouraged, more churches will permit secular music as long as it is approved by the priest prior to the wedding day. Although there are many beautiful love songs that have been composed over time, you must appreciate that since a Catholic wedding takes place inside of God’s house, most priests are reluctant to allow any music that might be contentious or inappropriate. They take extra precautions to ensure that the music will be suitable and that guests will not be offended. The easiest way to prevent this problem is to not include secular music in a Catholic wedding.

Another tradition of the Catholic Church that sometimes causes apprehension is the requirement that the couple undergo pre-marital counseling sessions, sometimes called Pre-Cana. These are extremely valuable because they give the couple a foundation for talking about various serious issues. This time honored tradition of the Catholic Church goes a long way to ensuring that couples are right for each other and that their marriage will endure. These sessions are usually hosted by a priest and can also include young married couples who will testify to the joys and tribulations of being married. These can be either individual or group sessions and may include weekly or monthly sessions or may be one intensive weekend of counseling.

Both parties do not have to be Catholic in order to have their wedding accepted by the Catholic Church. It is important, however, that at least one of them is an active member of a Catholic Church. Usually known as ‘a Practicing Catholic’. The non-Catholic party, however, is required to participate in the required pre-marital counseling in order to ensure that the church will recognize the union. As previously mentioned, if either party was previously married, they would have to seek an annulment before they could be married in the Catholic Church.

It is very clear that in order for a marriage to be accepted by the Catholic Church it is vital to adhere to the traditions.

To summarize… these traditions include getting married in a church, music selections, seeking annulments for previous marriages and participating in church sanctioned counseling sessions.

Wedding Planning Checklist

Weddings on a Budget : Wedding Planner Guide : Wedding Location : Wedding Dress : Bridesmaid’s Dresses : Wedding Invitation : Wedding Rings : Wedding Photographer : Wedding Flowers Ideas : Wedding Caterer : Wedding Music Ideas : Wedding Decorations : The Best Man : Wedding Planning for Guests : Planning a Wedding

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