Our Wedding & Our Priest

My parents and most of my family lives an hour away from where I live and my Mom has decided their house will be wedding central (all the supplies, etc will be stored there). She’d like to make it a little easier on her by having us use a church by her instead of the parish church we attend by my house. But we REALLY want our priest to be the one who celebrates our wedding with us.

So is it possible for a Catholic priest to do a wedding in a different Catholic church (other than the one he’s assigned to)?

I believe this is actually fairly common. I think at least a third of the weddings in our parish involve priests who are “friends of the family” and aren’t assigned to our parish. If different dioceses are involved the visiting priest may have to make some arrangements through the chancery, but if in the same diocese, I think only the pastor’s permission is needed.

You can always ask the priest who you want to marry you and the pastor at your mother’s parish. That said, I cantor for many Catholic weddings where the priest is from outside of the parish. At one of the parishes where I regularly work at as a wedding cantor/soloist, the wedding forms request that the couple get their own priest to marry them. And at another parish where I regularly work for weddings, the pastor (only one priest for the parish) also suggests that couples find own priest, especially if the couple isn’t part of the parish.

At least one priest I know won’t marry couples who are not part of the parish. You’d better check that out!

Of course…this happens all the time. We did this with both of our girls, when they were married at our Cathedral. One priest was from outside the diocese, and the second from another parish, just not the Cathedral parish. For the priest from outside the diocese, I believe there was a letter involved to/from the bishop.

Not a problem at all. Just talk to your priest and he can direct you.

Best wishes and God bless.

Why don’t you just ask the priest?

Besides being able to celebrate the Mass there, he may not want to celebrate the Mass there for other reasons…like his other appointments and responsibilities that require him to be near his parish.

It is your wedding. I understand your mother’s desire but her desire should not trump your plans or inconvenience the priest.

yes
if its in the same diocese, all he has to do is ask permission from the parish
if its in another diocese, he has to get approval from the bishop of that diocese plus the permission of the parish

When we married, pre-VII, my wife wanted to marry in a church where she had often worked. That required permission from her pastor. Then we wanted her uncle from the next state to celebrate. That required permission from the pastor of the church where we married, and possibly from the diocese. Diocesan permission for priests from adjacent dioceses are often automatic.

Then Father had to spend the morning at the statehouse getting permission from the state. We have an elaborate document signed by the governor and secretary of state granting him a one time permission.

The state permission is the only one I recall requiring a personal appearance. The rest were done with a phone call I think. A priest from the church where we were married did all the marriage preparation work; it was pretty limited in those days.

Just to clarify…

My boyfriend and I live an hour+ from my parents’ house. I have older relatives who would be unable to travel that far for the wedding, but could attend if we had it closer to home. Plus there’s a hotel about a block away from where we’d have the reception and the church is only about 5 miles away. My boyfriend’s family will be flying in from various states around the US and maybe even one friend from Japan. So since we’ll be doing all of the planning at my parents’ house, it would be easier to have the church near by (which is a lovely church and has a beautiful college campus near by to take pictures in).

The reason why we’d like to have our parish priest do it is because he has always been so very kind to me after I moved and started attending all by myself -and- he is the same priest that taught my boyfriend about the Catholic faith in RCIA and confirmed him as well. So he knows both of us well and we’d like to have him be there to celebrate.

We will not be choosing a date that falls on a Sunday, as I know he needs to be with our parish and we’ll be trying to at least do this no sooner than June 2011— I’m going to assume that he’d be free around that time.

Also, the reason why I had to come here and ask was because he’s away in Italy for two weeks and my dear Mother is busy already planning the wedding. She needs some answers to at least do some pre-planning until we hear otherwise.

Thank you for the input— it’ll be a different diocese so I’m sure they’ll have to be communication between priests and perhaps bishops too.

My goodness that sounds like a lot of work— this will be in state at least so hopefully no special paper work will have to be filled out. I’m glad it worked out for the both of you though! :thumbsup:

Signed by the governor??? :bigyikes:

Get your date coordinated with the church and with him as soon as possible. You should have that at least sixmonths in advance, and it is never too early.

I have heard too many sad stories: “But we have the reception hall all contracted for and now the church won’t let us have that date.” :frowning:

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