Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Wedding Advice VI

The Interfaith Catholic Ceremony

I already have some magazines but I need to pull myself together. I want to set up a meeting with my church, and I'd like to know what to expect - what questions they'll ask, etc. Since you did a Catholic ceremony and you're Catholic and he wasn't you are my model!

You just got engaged! No need to pull yourself together just yet! (Unless there's something else you're not telling us ;) )

If you go to mass tomorrow, you may just want to talk to your priest after mass to set something up. He'll ask why you want to get married in the church. If he's as laid back as P.Diddy, as long as you don't say anything anti-Catholic you're fine.

Jon and I didn't have a Catholic mass. We had an interfaith mass--which is basically the same as a Catholic mass without the extra 15 minutes of preparing and receiving the host: procession; old testament reading; new testament reading; gospel; homily; marriage rites; ring blessing; you're married! I think Catholic mass has host distribution after the ring blessing. (Our mass was 1/2 hour--4 people in processional--processionals can really drag out a wedding's timeline if there are many bridesmaids.)

Jon's Christian of some sort, but none of his family are Catholic, and it's unusual to have half the church not receiving the host or receiving it sacrilegiously. It seems like the Catholic church doesn't make you feel bad about that anymore, plus that you're not living together (yet?) is also good--there's this priest in VA that made the guy move out.

Basically, you'll meet with the priest a few times during your engagement to talk about your upcoming marriage in the church.

The first meeting, you'll take the FOCCUS test. You'll take it separately, and the choices are agree, disagree, don't know; it's scantron. It asks some basic things like: you and your partner want to be married in the church, you and your partner want children, you are afraid of your partner, your partner's drug habit makes you worry about your upcoming marriage, etc.

The second meeting the priest will have some analysis to help you "improve" your communication where you scored the lowest. (Apparently, there's a human scoring this in Newark b/c their machine is broke--but this was over a year ago, so maybe they got it fixed?) He also gave us the ceremony book to plan out our readings and wording choices.

Our third meeting was a follow up to the 2nd and talking about more specific things that I had questions about (runner necessary? strapless dresses OK? flower petals thrown in the aisle and outside OK? etc.)

At some point you'll need to do PreCana. Jon and I did a 1 day PreCana at a large church's rec center. It was painless, but a bit useless. We got breakfast--a bunch of boring people lectured (though there was a couple who was married for over 40 years that was inspiring and cute)--then lunch. Then we left at 3 (it said until 5 I think on the timeline). If you want to take PreCana seriously, you may want to do the multiple sessions that are smaller groups, but the large 1 session worked out best for us. (Jon has little patience.)

Fourth session was talking about PreCana and finalizing details. Our Lady of Fatima was $400 and came with an organist and singer.

Okay--I realize this a lot of information, but I hope this was helpful. Getting married in a Catholic church is really easy.
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