Preparing for your Marriage
Prior to making a lifelong commitment to your spouse, it is very important to make the time for a carefully guided preparation. There are two preparation courses available at St Patrick’s:
1. The Foccus instrument for marriage preparation is strategies and skills orientated and is facilitated at the Slattery Centre beside the Church. It has a cost of $175.00.
2. The parish itself provides a practical and theological preparation for the Sacrament of Marriage on the first and third Monday evenings of the month from 6.00-7.00pm at St Pat’s Hall, also at 515 Smollett St. There is no additional cost for this, as it is a provision of the parish (contact Fr Joel on firstname.lastname@example.org)
You will require copies of your Birth Certificates and recent copies of your Baptismal (Christening) Certificates for both parties, if applicable. Recent copies of Baptismal Certificates are usually readily available from the parish priest of the church where you were baptised. For a sacramental marriage between two baptized persons, a Catholic is required to have first received the Sacraments of Confirmation and First Holy Communion.
How do we book our wedding?
The best thing to do first is to arrange an introduction with the Parish Priest, Fr Joel Wallace. He will help you to discern the best route forward toward your Catholic wedding. After this, he will direct you back to the Parish Secretary. Office hours are 8.30am and 12.30pm weekdays. There is $100.00 booking fee to ensure the date and time of your wedding. Saturday afternoon weddings should be scheduled for 1.30pm or 3.00pm. Sometimes this can be negotiated. Friday afternoons are also available, if required. A rehearsal time will be arranged with the celebrant and is usually scheduled for the evening prior to the wedding. As a guideline, an offering of $350.00 is requested for the upkeep and maintenance of the church building and is paid prior to the wedding. Likewise, a celebrant fee of $175.00 is payable through the Parish Office. All may be arranged through the Parish Secretary.
What about marriage preparation and paperwork?
After the booking is made and a celebrant has been arranged, it is time to think about some marriage preparation and paperwork. There are civil and church papers to organize. Your birth and baptismal certificates will be required, as well as photo identification, such as your passport or drivers licence. Our marriage preparation aims to relate your experience of love to the Word of God and vice versa. It is centred around the Sacred Scriptures. Preparation of the ceremony is also incorporated into this and involves selecting passages for the Readings and preparing the Prayers and a booklet, if desired. The wedding ceremony may be within the Mass or as a more simple ceremony. Your celebrant will help guide you through all this. Again, we congratulate you and look forward to journeying with you toward your wedding. Please contact us for all wedding enquiries.
Flowers and decorations
Flowers can be arranged in the church for your wedding if required. Please speak with the parish secretary on (02) 6041 2588 to discuss these arrangements. Pew Bows, if used, are provided, fitted and removed by your arrangement.
Music and hymns chosen should be sacred and appropriate for use in the church. It is the responsibility of the couple to provide and arrange an organist, soloist or instrumental arrangements. The use of appropriate pre-recorded music may be used but it is courteous to ask the celebrant to approve of the arrangements in advance.
The following musicians are familiar with ceremonies at St Patrick’s:
- James Flores: 0425 392 895
- Mary Minchin: (02) 6021 4631
- Bernadette Packer: 0430 183 044
- Andrew Flores: 0433 841 676
- Natalie Sobolewski: (02) 6023 2906