Marriage & Weddings
Requirements for your Wedding
1. Notice of Intention to Marry
“At least three months notice of intention to marry must be given” – Irish Bishops’ Conference.
2. Date and Time
Please check with the Sacristan that the Church is available. Please confirm with the Priest the date and time of your wedding ceremony before making final arrangements for your reception.
3. Marriage Preparation Course
Contact: The Family Life Services, Clifford St., Wexford.
Office hours: 10am to 1pm Monday to Friday. Tel: 053 9123086
4. Certificates to be Obtained
(i) Baptismal Certificate of recent origin (less than 6 months) obtainable from parish in which you were baptised.
(ii) Evidence of Death or Annulment in the case of re-marriage.
(iii) Pre-Nuptial Enquiry Form – Acquired from the parish in which you live, or from your home parish.
(iv) Letter of Freedom to marry is required from each parish in which you have lived for six months or more since reaching required age to marry.
Registration of Marriages Act 1995
(i) The minimum age at which a person ordinarily resident in the state may marry is 18 years of age.
(ii) At least three months notice must be given to the Registrar for the district in which the marriage is to take place. Any marriage taking place after 1 st August 1996 whether by religious or civil ceremony, will not be valid in civil law unless three months notification has been given, or unless permission to marry has been granted by the High Court under Section 33, of the Family Law Act 1995.
Local Registrar: County Clinic, Grogan’s Road Tel. 053 9123522
N.B. – It is the responsibility of the couple to notify the Registrar for the district.
There must be a minimum of two witnesses to the marriage, both should be over 18 years of age.
6. Preparation for the Ceremony
Regarding the actual ceremony, there is a great variety of readings, prayers etc, available. You are encouraged to discuss these with the celebrant, who will help you to choose what is most appropriate for your wedding.
7. Music, Flowers and Photographs
Music: Consult the organist at the Church.
Mr. Gerard Lawlor, Park. Tel 087 646 0748. email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Bride Street: Mr. Gerard Lawlor, Park. Tel 087 646 0748. email: email@example.com
Flowers: Consult the Sacristan
Photographs: Please make your own arrangements.
Please make arrangements with the Priest if you wish to have a rehearsal.
9. Parish Customs
It is customary to make an offering to the Priests of the Parish, the Altar Servers and Sacristan.
If you would like the Priest to attend the Reception, please invite him well in advance.
Getting Married in Church
NEW REQUIREMENTS FOR CIVIL REGISTRATION
What changes are being made?
There are no changes to the church requirements for couples getting married. However, some developments are taking place affecting the civil registration of marriage.
When do the new practices come into effect?
They became legal requirements from the 5th November 2007.
What are the principal changes in the new requirements?
The 3 most important changes are:
- The couple take greater responsibility for the civil registration of their marriage
- The couple make a declaration of no civil impediment
- Priests in order to officiate at a marriage, must be on the ‘List of Solemnisers’ submitted by each local Bishop to the Registrar-General
First Change: Couples Take Responsibility For Civil Registration
- When the couple meet the priest in the parish, they should be made aware of their need to make an appointment to meet with any civil registrar in person to give notice of their intention to marry. This meeting must take place at least 3 months before the wedding in order to comply with the civil requirement. The couple will need to know that the church is available prior to this meeting. They also need to know the name of the priest who will solemnise the marriage
- The couple will be required to bring the following documentation to the registrar’s office
- Photo identity (preferably a passport or driving license)
- Names and dates of birth of witnesses
- Name of the church where they wish to be married
- Date of marriage
- Name of the priest who will officiate at the marriage; this presumes that the celebrant is a registered solemniser and that he has agreed to officiate at the marriage
- If either party has been previously married, they must provide the civil registrar with an original divorce decree or a death certificate if widowed.
- When all the civil requirements have been completed satisfactorily the couple will receive, from the registrar, a Marriage Registration Form (MRF). This document replaces the current form. Without this form the couple cannot get married nor may the solemniser proceed with the marriage ceremony
- The solemniser and the parish priest of the place of marriage will receive a notification from the civil registrar’s office concerning the marriage due to take place
- The couple must present the MRF to the solemniser before the wedding so that he can check that the details are correct before the marriage takes place. This should be done as early as is convenient.
- If changes are necessary – for instance, changing the name of the solemniser – the couple should be advised to contact the civil registrar to arrange for the re-issue of the MRF at the earliest possible stage before the ceremony
- After the wedding, the solemniser must ensure that the MRF is signed by the couple, the two witnesses and himself
- After the marriage has been celebrated, is it the responsibility of the couple (not the local priest or solemniser) to return the MRF to any Registrar’s Office. This form must be returned within one month of the marriage
Second Change: Verbal Declaration Of No Civil Impediment
- The solemniser must ask the couple to make a verbal declaration of no civil impediment
- This declaration should be made not more than two days before the wedding
- It is the recommended practice that this declaration be made at the beginning of the wedding, when the bride and groom arrive at the sanctuary
List Of Solemnisers
- The priest who officiates at the marriage is called the ‘solemniser’
- In order to officiate at a marriage priests must be on the ‘List of Solemnisers’ submitted by each local Bishop to the Registrar-General
- f the priest, whom the couple have chosen to officiate at their marriage, is not a priest of the parish, it is important for the local priest to make the couple aware that he must be a registered solemniser
- If a priest is not on the List of Solemnisers, and wishes to officiate at the marriage, he must become a temporary solemniser. He can do this by submitting a request to the Bishop of the place of marriage together with an appropriate Testimonial Letter signed by his Ordinary (i.e. Bishop or Provincial Superior). If the priest is incardinated into the diocese in which the marriage is to take place, he needs simply to request this from his Bishop
- For the canonical validity of the marriage, a visiting solemniser will need to receive delegation as heretofore.
Where Can Catholic Marriages Take Place?
The proper and ordinary place of the celebration of a catholic marriage continues to be the parish church(es) (cann 1115 & 1118). All existing diocesan policies with regard to the place of marriage will remain the same; so too in relation to the time and day on which marriages can take place. The solemniser and the couple must comply with these diocesan regulations.
Where Can I Find More Information
Information can be found at GRO Ireland – click here to visit site.
What The Solemniser Needs To Do
- Make sure he is on the List of Solemnisers
- If he is not on the list, he must become a Temporary Solemniser
- Ensure that the couple have received the Marriage Registration Form (MRF) before the wedding takes place
- Check that all details on the MRF are correct
- Make sure that the couple makes the verbal declaration of no civil impediment in the presence of the two witnesses and himself
- Ensure that the MFR is signed by the couple, two witnesses and himself
- Comply with all diocesan regulations regarding the time and place of marriage.
What The Parish Clergy Need To Do
- Complete the Pre-Nuptial Inquiry Forms in the usual manner
- Inform the couple of the requirement to meet the civil registrar at least 3 months before the wedding to give notice of their intention to marry
- Inform the couple that the priest they have chosen must be on the List of Solemnisers
- Give delegation to the visiting solemniser as heretofore
What The Couple Must Do
- Meet one of the local parish clergy
- Book the church where they wish to marry (for couples living outside the parish there will be a charge of €300 for use of the Church)
- Meet a civil registrar at least 3 months before the wedding to give notice of their intention to marry
- Receive the Marriage Registration Form (MRF) from the civil registrar
- Being the MRF to the solemniser
- Make the verbal declaration of no civil impediment not more than 2 days beforehand
- Return the signed MRF to any civil registrar not later than 1 month after the wedding