Weddings at St Bernadette's Parish

In the Catholic tradition, marriage is a Sacrament, one of seven. Simply put, Sacraments are signs or acts of Godís love which touch us as we are.

As husband and wife grow together, love, offend, forgive, reconcile, work through disappointment and emerge as united, they become a living and effective sign that says to all: this is the way God is. He loves us through thick and thin, for better, for worse, till death and beyond. Marriage is a sign ..... a Sacrament ..... of that.

The decision to marry is one of the most significant decisions in life. Since it effects both State and Church there are certain requirements to be fulfilled:

Marriage Preparation Program.
This entails a minimum of a one day Preparation Programme at the Marriage Education Office in Perth. Details of the courses will be given on your first appointment with the priest.

Provide Appropriate Documents

  • Birth Certificates or extracts
  • A recently issued notification of Baptism for Catholics (available on enquiry from the Catholic Church where you were baptised). The same or original Baptism Certificates for Christians of other denominations
  • For those under 18 years old, a signed consent from parents
  • Death Certificates of former spouse, Decree of Nullity/dissolution, Decree of divorce if applicable

Book the Church.
This should be done at least 6 months prior to the wedding.

Times for Weddings may be arranged for any day except the week prior to and including Easter, and Christmas day. The most popular day for weddings is Saturday afternoon, and the latest starting time is 3.30p.m.

Ceremony of Marriage.
Each couple is encouraged to prepare their own individual celebration with the help of the celebrant - choosing readings, prayers, etc. There are two different kinds of wedding ceremonies:

  • Nuptial Mass, i.e. the ceremony of marriage within a Mass offered with and for the couple. The assumption is that a couple requests it because Mass is important to them, and they intend to make regular Mass attendance part of their family life. This importance is, of course, obvious and easily proven because they have been faithful to their worship with the parish community.
  • Marriage Ceremony, i.e. the ceremony within a Scripture - Prayer Service. This is strongly recommended in cases where church going has not been a part of a personís formative years or where a Catholic is marrying a person from another Christian tradition.

Readings for the Ceremony :
Three readings, and one Responsorial Psalm from Sacred Scripture must be chosen for the Ceremony. The readings can be downloaded here.

Witnesses.
Law requires two witnesses over the age of 18 to sign the marriage certificates and the register.

Music.
Some songs do not display the basic character of Christian love, that is, the self-giving which goes beyond the physical and emotional level and are not appropriate to reflect what is being celebrated in this Sacrament. If in doubt, please consult the celebrant.

Other Matters.
Flowers, videoing and photography must be discussed with the celebrant before arrangements are made.



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