If you have recently become engaged, then we offer our warmest congratulations.
The most important part of the preparation for Marriage in the Catholic Church is truly understanding the sacrament and the lifelong commitment you are making to each other. Please complete a form at the back of the Churches, and one of the Clergy Team will contact you to go through the various stages of preparation and what is required to make a valid marriage.
Following the National and Diocesan Guidelines for marriage in the Catholic Church can we please remind you:
•If you are planning to get married in this country you should give at least six months notice.
•If you are planning to bet married abroad (or know of anyone abroad planning to marry in this country) you should give at least nine months notice.
Once you have applied, Deacon Tim or one of the Priests will make contact to ascertain your freedom to marry, arrange marriage preparation and start the necessary paperwork and documentation.
To be married according to the Rites of the Catholic Church either you or your fiancé must be a member of the Catholic Faith through your Baptism. Further, both of you must be FREE to marry which means neither of you have been married before either in a Civil or Religious Ceremony. If you require information about annulments or convalidation of marriages that have taken place outside the Catholic Church this is also available from the clergy team, or you can (confidentially) read up on thishttp://www.abdiocese.org.uk/ Administration/DiocesanTribunal/tribunal02 Please note that anyone wishing to become a Catholic first needs to regularise any past marriages that have taken place civilly or in Church.
Please note that for a marriage in the Catholic Church whether here in the parish, elsewhere in the diocese, elsewhere in the country, or overseas, at least twelve months notice should be given. This allows time for a period of preparation and the opportunity to ensure that all the paperwork is complete. Grateful thanks to our deanery Marriage Preparation Team (who are currently all Nativity of the Lord parishioners) and Fr Simon Hall (Oxted and Warlingham) for delivering a most inspiring preparation programme.
We look forward to hearing from you. Remember please give plenty of notice. The earlier the better. We have many weddings and would wish to accommodate you on the day of your choice. When we meet with you we will undertake to complete all the paperwork and advise you about Engaged Couples Days; the Order of Service for your Wedding; Flowers; Fees; the Organist and answer any questions you may have.
Once again, our warmest congratulations on your engagement.
Be good to each other.
The way to ‘greatness’ in the real sense of that word is found through the taking up of the Cross, in service of others and in a real openness to the simplicity that is found in child-like trust.
Bishop Richard Moth