Tips for a Newly Engaged Catholic Couple?!?!


#1

I just got engaged!!! Thanks be to God, she said “Yes!”

I was hoping that some of the marriage veterans here might be able to share with us some of the tips they have, both for the engagement/wedding/honeymoon planning, and for thereafter.

Please note: I only wish to hear things that coincide with the views of the Catholic Church, so if you plan to stir things up, I would just appreciate if you start your own thread elsewhere.

God bless! :slight_smile:

+VNV+


#2

I am also engaged. :slight_smile: I was told to book the Church first and then the reception next. I think that was good advise.


#3

Pray every time you get together before you’re married, pray together first thing every morning and last thing every night when you are married.

Understand that you will be giving of your SELF to your spouse and that both of you will be giving of your SELVES to your children.


#4

Congratulations!:thumbsup:

Some things my wife and I did when we got engaged that helped us tremendously was:

  • Started NFP right away (no we were not having sex) but started on charting her cycle and identifying any health and fertility issues since these things take a while

  • Read 5 Love Languages. It really helps and really insightful in how different people communicate their love and how they respond to such gestures. A must read for anyone engaged or married.

  • Pray together and never go to bed angry.

  • Talk about your hopes, desires and dreams. This sounds like common sense but many couples do not know their spouses dreams.

  • Family is important and don’t be afraid to ask for help.

  • Enjoy every moment because everything flies by.

  • Things only get busier after the wedding. I remember thinking that things will settle down after the wedding day but life continues to get busier.


#5

Congratulations to you both!!

I’m not sure what kind of tips you’re looking for, but here are a few that come to mind:

-DO get good Catholic premarital counseling and establish a good relationship with that counselor so you can do “spot checks” if and when difficulties arrive later on. We did this and it helped ENORMOUSLY that we already had a trusted therapist in place whom we could call when something minor or major arose.

-DON’T plan a huge wedding. They’re hugely stressful and hugely expensive. Be reasonable. Don’t invite everyone who ever worked with your Dad and everyone her mom went to high school with. :wink:

-DO each take a little time apart before the wedding - even just a weekend - to pray.

-DO spend time with one another’s families if possible. You are “marrying” these people, too. :rolleyes:

-DO take an NFP class several months before the wedding.

-DON’T be surprised or scared when conflict comes up. Learn to argue the right way now so you’ll have a good pattern in place for when you’re newlyweds. Good conflict resolution means much greater intimacy in a marriage! Get your counselor to teach you some ground rules for “fighting fair.”

-DO spend time together in front of the Blessed Sacrament and practice praying together!

Blessings to you both,

Mary (wife of ten years, mother of four)


#6

Congrats to VeroNihilVerius and srferdave! I am not a veteran (2 years married come June 20th!) but I can say planning the marriage is much more important than planning the wedding. Things will go wrong with the wedding, but your marriage will always have that solid foundation of starting in the Church. Here’s my advice:

  • Accept that children are always a possibility when getting married and be open to that blessing even if you have decided it is best to avoid. Know even with NFP children are a blessing whenever God times them. Know that if you do plan on using NFP it does require restraint and times of abstinence. Use NFP for reasons you both have prayerfully discerned. And even if you do plan on having children immediately become familiar with some form of NFP. You never know when for health or financial reasons you may be called to avoid pregnancy and it is good to become familiar with one’s fertility.

  • Take Pre-Cana seriously. Ours was a weekend retreat which DH and I surprisingly got more out of than we originally thought we would. From experience I have two strong Catholic friends who saw serious red flags during pre-cana while engaged and continued on because they felt the issues would resolve themselves. It didn’t and unfortunately they filed for divorce 7 months after their marriage began. It was heart-breaking. Listen to what you learn during the months ahead. Do not let the dream wedding blind you from seeing serious issues with the marriage.

  • Wedding planning note: Book the church first! A lot of churches have a long list of pre-wedding requirements and waiting times. Try to find a parish/priest with whom you will have a continued relationship don’t just pick one because their decor is prettier. Often churches will have a designated wedding coordinator. Get in touch with this person to see if they have suggestions on musicians, readings, etc. It is better to find out now than the day of the regulations on photography. We just used family so it wasn’t an issue to us…but depending on their regulations it could be.

  • Set aside time that is reserve strictly for each other and has nothing to do with wedding planning. It is very easy to get sucked into making the next 6 months or 1 year all about the wedding. Make time with the two of you to grow in Christ by going to adoration, praying together, or starting an engaged couples Bible study. Begin the marriage seeking Christ together.

  • Find a married couple you trust to mentor you or a group of like-minded Catholic couples/adults to enjoy company with. DH and I have a lovely couple with who have children our age that are no longer in town. We go out for coffee after church often and they have been a great in showing us what a good Catholic marriage should look like. It works out great for both of us because they enjoy getting coffee after church and are as passionate about Christ as we are. We also know some Catholic couples our age who help us to live our faith. Your relationship will reflect what you surround yourself with. If you surround yourself with negative people or people who don’t share your values it is easy to justify compromising your faith.

Just a few…really long paragraphs! lol But I hope this helps and congrats again! :thumbsup:


#7

Congratulations! Enjoy this time together, and enjoy planning your wedding. Even though it’s a very stressful time, enjoy making decisions together and planning a day that reflects the both of you. Rely on each other when things get stressful (like when the rector of the Cathedral where we got married called one month before our wedding - while I was teaching at the school across the street - to tell me that they lost my and my soon-to-be husband’s baptismal certificates, and without them we couldn’t get married {insert panic attack here}).

I also read Lover Letters to My Husband - letters from St.Gianna Molla while I was engaged, and recommend it to all brides-to-be. amazon.com/Letters-Husband-Gianna-Beretta-Molla/dp/0819844934

Trust in each other, trust in God and enjoy this time in your lives!


#8

From someone involved in preparing couples for marriage:

Please take your Faith seriously, and plan to devote a good period of time to preparing spiritually and mentally for the Sacrament.

Please check with your parish (priest) or diocese to include two MOST IMPORTANT activities:

  1. Take FOCCUS. You’ll be amazed at the things you haven’t considered/thought about!

  2. Work with a trained Sponsor Couple. Plan for six or eight meetings minimum. If not available, the weekend retreat is “okay”, but you will benefit immensely from having “sponsors” for your Sacrament. Avoid the “quickie” Pre-Cana one-day marriage prep…you won’t spend the necessary time to learn together about each other.

May your marriage be blessed!


#9

Sit down with her father and make sure you understand the practical matters that apply to all couples. Sometimes guys don't think too clearly when they're in love. You need to hear her expectations for the future before the wedding, not after. She needs to hear yours.

Marriage is a lifelong vocation. I avoided it because the last young lady I was with was looking for someone who made 10 times my income at that time. Just be honest with each other.

Peace,
Ed


#10

Congratulations and best wishes.

Others have said it, but it’s worth saying over. Make Jesus Christ the center of your marriage. Do everything each of you can to get the other to heaven. Pray together. Love your children and let them see how much you love one another.


#11

Not sure if I’m considered a veteran - 10 years in October, but I do have some experience. I totally agree that you must do some good premarital counselling. They have a way of bringing out any potential issues, and making you focus on them before you make your vows.

Also, remember that things will not always be rosy. It gets boring sometimes, you may find yourself looking at this person you married and wondering where that fun, amazing person went. This is when you have to work hard at your marriage. I really believe this is one main thing that can tempt people to look outside their marriage for consolation. Try to realise that this is part of the ebb and flow of marriage, and the daily grind means your spouse can’t always be wonderful and perfect. If you stay tolerant and try to make yourself a better spouse, you will be rewarded with an ever-deepening, ever-strengthening relationship.

Lastly, my Dad told me that the first thirty-two years are the hardest. After that it’s easy.:wink:


#12

Haven’t read all the replies, but I would strongly suggest that as part of your premarriage counseling that you take Financial Peace University as it will help you two come to common goals about money. Since money troubles is one of the leading causes of marriage conflict and ultimately divorce, I think it would be important to have a good financial base to start your marriage – make sure you have common goals, learn to work together if one of you is a spender and the other a saver, et cetera. And while Dave Ramsey is not Catholic, he is a Christian and gives good, practical advice on the money side of things.


#13

Engagement:
Enjoy the excitement of it all. Do your premarital classes, and consider couples counseling (not that you are having problems, it just tend to help teach you ways to deal with them)

Wedding:
Check you church's guide lines on flowers. Only do real ones where you have to. I actually made all my own flowers. We saved a TON of money, and since our wedding was at Christmas time the garland, and sprays we used decorate my house during the holidays. Also watch Michaels and Hobby Lobby, they both frequently run their fake flowers on 1/2 sales. We had a party at my mom's house to make them all and people came in and out all day it was a blast. Added bonus that we get to remeber our wedding each time we put them up.

We also printed and made our own invitations, by buying the parts at a local specialty paper store and doing the rest ourselves. Again huge money saver.

The one thing we did spend money and not scimp on was the photographer. It was worth it to have the amazing pictures he shot. He and his assistant were evenrywhere and caught everything, yet no one even noticed them. We did skip the professional videographer. We ahd a friend video from the choir loft, and our photographer put together a DVD with our wedding songs and pictures on them and it was plenty. Another note on photography, if your church has stained glass windows let your photographer know in advance so they can check out the light through them at times similar to your wedding. Our church has AMAZING windows, which looked beautiful during the service but had turned black with the evening afterwards during pictures. Our photographer shot a tone of shots before the service and simply "fixed" the last pictures of just my husband and I infront of the the windows.

Also approach the whole thing with the attitude that it is going to be simple and drama free, and that on the "big day" something is bound to go wrong......that way you aren't freaked out when it does, and are pleasantly surprised if nothing major happens.

Depending on what season you are getting married it can be advantageous to book the reception hall first then the church......or vice versa. Since we got married at the holidays the church wasn't an issue as their aren't many wedding then......however the reception was a different matter as there are lots of holiday parties at that time. Just be aware.

Marriage:
I'm going to disagree with the age old advice to not go to bed angry. Several times in my marriage my husband and I have gotten into arguments late at night and they were compounded by the fact we were both overly tired, so we just kept going in circles and getting angrier and angrier. After sleeping on it, we were a lot more rational and able to actually get to the bottom of the issue and solve it.


#14

The 3 most important rules of marriage: Communicate, communicate, communicate.

Congratulations and good luck!:thumbsup:


#15

Start saving for retirement!

Excersice a great deal of patience!

Remember what the sacrament of marriage is all about on a regular basis, and that your primary responsability is to love each other.

Have a great, fun adventure.


#16

Totally agree with this one!!


#17

Start saving for retirement!

Excersice a great deal of patience!

Remember what the sacrament of marriage is all about on a regular basis, and that your primary responsability is to love each other.

Have a great, fun adventure.


#18

[quote="VeroNihilVerius, post:1, topic:236597"]
I just got engaged!!!! Thanks be to God, she said "Yes!"

I was hoping that some of the marriage veterans here might be able to share with us some of the tips they have, both for the engagement/wedding/honeymoon planning, and for thereafter.

Please note: I only wish to hear things that coincide with the views of the Catholic Church, so if you plan to stir things up, I would just appreciate if you start your own thread elsewhere.

God bless! :)

+VNV+

[/quote]

Love her and go to Mass together.


#19

I've only been married for 4 years, but here are some little things...

  1. A practical matter: If you're getting married in warm weather and do outdoor pics, make sure someone has bottled water and a snack for your wife, or she may get dehydrated and feel faint and nauseous. It has to be a good amount of water and has to be with the wedding party, not left behind in someone's trunk.

  2. If your family has strong opinions about how events should be run, don't let them pressure your wife to include or exclude certain traditions, to invite or disinvite certain people, etc. Let them know that all such requests go through you, not her. If you act as her emotional buffer in this way you will be her hero! Of course you may have a very mellow family and it won't be an issue. But if it is, she shouldn't have to get stressed out by your family's requests and expectations, especially if they change a lot. She'll have enough on her mind dealing with the plans, her own family and so on.

  3. If you and she want a big wedding, fine. But if you both want to keep things simple, try to get away with the smallest, least expensive wedding you can. It's just one day and it goes by so fast. (But don't skimp on the photographer.)

P.S. Congratulations!


#20

[quote="Planet_Claire, post:19, topic:236597"]
3. If you and she want a big wedding, fine. But if you both want to keep things simple, try to get away with the smallest, least expensive wedding you can. It's just one day and it goes by so fast. (But don't skimp on the photographer.)

P.S. Congratulations!

[/quote]

I totally agree with the it's one day thing. Marriage isn't a sprint to the wedding, it's a marathon and the goal is for it to last a long time. Also as you get older the most important days in your life will include your wedding day, but not be limited to it. The day my 1st born was born is still the most life changing event that has ever happened to me.


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