Do you have to have a marriage license to be married in the church?

If a couple wish to receive the sacrament of holy matrimony &
are eligible to be married pursuant to state law can they receive the sacrament of matrimony without a marriage license?

Can. 1071 §1. Except in a case of necessity, a person is not to assist without the permission of the local ordinary at:

2/ a marriage which cannot be recognized or celebrated according to the norm of civil law

The norm of civil law in almost every country is that a religious marriage must also be a legal marriage. A marriage license is required unless there is an extraordinary circumstance for which the bishop is willing to grant an exemption, such permission is very difficult to obtain.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.