We would like to get married sooner than later (we’re both 40 and want to increase our chances for babies ;). But if we wait the minimum 6 months only, there are no Saturdays left at any parishes. So we started considering Sundays, but were told that Catholic weddings on Sundays are verboten. That was confusing because we’ve attended them both recently and in the distant past, though in a different diocese. Is it a diocesan rule or something else? Can you clear up the confusion? Thanks.
I’m assuming that you have already talked to your priest; a Catholic wedding is not like “booking” a hotel room. (sorry for sounding flippant). I have never ever seen a Catholic wedding done on a Sunday. Your priest should have the answers. Work with him.
As far as the babies go; trust God. If he wants you to have them, you will have them.
Thanks corsair, I believe that you haven’t ever ever been to a Catholic wedding on Sunday, but we have been to several. So I’d like to hear what the official Church teaching is about this. Obviously we’re not going to be thwarting our priest and will be talking to him in a few days when we have an appointment. But regardless of what he tells us, we’d like to know the official rules on this. As for the fertility issues, of course we will trust God, but fertility problems happen many times because of decisions that get made along the way by people who aren’t making decisions with fertility in mind (such as waiting to get married for career or financial reasons, or using oral contraception for medical reasons, etc) and later, when their attention is focused on fertility, they wish they had made different decisions along the way. So we are trying to make our decisions with fertility in mind, including our wedding date decision. It will still be a miracle even if it happens at this stage, much more if we wait longer, so we rely on God’s will in all things. Thanks again for your response.
What about a Friday evening?
I have never been to a
Catholic wedding on Sunday either.
Work with your priest. I agree with the above poster.
The rules vary depending on the season. On Sundays in ordinary time, you can have a regular wedding. If it’s a parish Mass or on Sundays of Advent, Lent, or Easter, it wouldn’t be a nuptial Mass but a regular Sunday Mass with a nuptial blessing and the option of swapping out any one reading with a wedding reading. On solemnities, e.g., if Christmas falls on a Sunday, you may not change any reading. On any day, you can have a wedding outside of Mass. It’s basically the nuptial Mass without Communion. On Ash Wednesday and Holy Week, weddings are prohibited completely.
Thanks for the suggestions and opinions, folks, I really appreciate your consideration. However, truly, what I need to find out is official teaching on the subject. As in, canon law, Magisterial teaching/documents, etc. Thanks.
johnmann - thank you so much!! Do you have a citation for that info. Exactly what we were looking for, thank you again.
It’s a maze of rules but here they are.
Ritual Masses are connected to the celebration of certain Sacraments or Sacramentals. They are prohibited on Sundays of Advent, Lent, and Easter, on Solemnities, on the days within the Octave of Easter, on the Commemoration of All the Faithful Departed (All Souls’ Day), on Ash Wednesday, and during Holy Week, and furthermore due regard is to be had for the norms set out in the ritual books or in the Masses themselves.
Rite of Marriage 11:
Whenever marriage is celebrated during Mass, white vestments are worn and the wedding Mass is used. If the marriage is celebrated on a Sunday or solemnity, the Mass of the day is used with the nuptial blessing and, where appropriate, the special final blessing.
The liturgy of the word is extremely helpful in emphasizing the meaning of the sacrament and the obligations of mar*riage. When the wedding Mass may not be used, one of the readings in nos. 67-105 should be chosen, except from Holy Thursday to Easter and on the feasts of Christmas, Epiphany, Ascension, Pentecost, Corpus Christi, and other holydays of obligation. On the Sundays of the Christmas season and throughout the year, in Masses which are not parish Masses, the wedding Mass may be used without change.
When a marriage is celebrated during Advent or Lent or other days of penance, the parish priest should advise the couple to take into consideration the special nature of these times.
I have also attended more than one Catholic wedding on a Sunday, one of which was during the regular Sunday Mass. I went to a wedding on a Friday afternoon a few weeks ago. Perhaps the priest meant that it is the parish policy not to have weddings on Sunday, as it is a very busy day for the priest and parish.
If the priest is worried about not having enough time on Sundays, you can suggest the nuptial blessing within a regular Sunday parish Mass.
There are the general rules that posters mentioned above. But there are sometimes other rules on a diocesan level or even parish rules for simple reasons of practicality. That’s why the best place to get answers is your priest.
Depending on the situation, I have even seen priests waive the normal 6 month waiting period to allow for a couple to marry sooner. You can always ask.
Absolutely! It isn’t really a waiting period. It is more to ensure that there is adequate time to get the necessary paperwork in order and take care of any other requirements. My husband and I were married 4 months after our initial meeting with the priest and the Friday wedding that we recently attended was scheduled for 3 months after the engagement. But it seems that if church availability is an issue 6 months out, it would be even more so sooner.
I got married to my beutiful wife on a sunday.(we) the priest incorporated it with the Sunday mass.it was brilliant.but i did have to ask the priest would it be ok for this to hapen.
i suggest that you do this.
I certainly hope Catholic weddings can be performed on a Sunday, since I was married on a Sunday. And no, it wasn’t part of the regularly scheduled Mass.
Now, it might be that the parish doesn’t schedule them on Sundays because the priests are already so busy. At my current parish there is a Mass at 5pn and at 8pm on Sundays, so I would guess weddings are out of the question.
I think it’s probably true that Sunday weddings are not as common due more to practical considerations rather than theological reasons.
Thanks and blessings to you all! These were helpful answers.
Another option to explore, if the issue is getting married ASAP, is finding out where a group marriage Mass is taking place. Several couples get married or convalidated at that one Mass.
My parish is the only one that does it in our area, and it occurs once a year in October.
Yes but a priest might not want to after celebrating more that one Sunday mass. It can be a a strain for parish priest who is looking after a large parish and its only him on his own as there is a shortage of priests. Pleas pray for vocations to the priest hood and the religious life.
We got married on a Sunday, with a mass that was not an ordinary parish mass; so it is definately possible.
One possibility for the priest saying it is not posisble is that a priest is only allowed to celebrate mass a certain number of times each day. I think twice for a Sunday is the limit, but someone will have the reference I’m sure. A mass with the marriage may or may not count towards this limit.
All the best