I’m posting to ask for canonical advice on my (a layperson) presiding over a marriage to ensure it has canonical acceptance as a Roman Catholic Sacrament.
I am a confirmed Roman Catholic, and am also a Justice of the Peace and have performed civil marriages in the past. My cousin, also a confirmed Roman Catholic, is engaged to marry her fiance, a baptized Lutheran Protestant, but they do not want a Catholic celebration and would prefer a secular ceremony. They’ve asked me to officiate, and I am deeply honored. I’ve always learned in my Catholic upbringing that the Sacrament of Marriage is a sacrament between man and woman, and only observed canonically by a witness (ideally two canonical witnesses presided over by an ordained minister).
The ceremony itself will be one of the couple’s creation, within the bounds of the civil marriage that I will be officiating.
What steps do I need to take to obtain special dispensation to serve as a canonical witness and celebrant for this marriage so that it is recognized by the Roman Catholic Church as a valid sacrament? I know the families would be thrilled if, even in this secular ceremony, there were a religious sacrament concurrently imparted.
Thank you for your advice!