The Sacrament of Marriage is a covenant, which is more than a contract. Covenant always expresses a relationship between persons. The marriage covenant refers to the relationship between the husband and wife, a permanent union of persons capable of knowing and loving each other and God. The celebration of marriage is also a liturgical act, appropriately held in a public liturgy at church. Catholics are urged to celebrate their marriage within the Eucharistic Liturgy.
Couples wishing to celebrate this sacrament should participate in marriage preparation. During this preparation, a priest, deacon or pastoral associate prepares the couple to be married by examining the spiritual, sacramental, and practical/relational aspects of marriage. Combined with a weekend Marriage Preparation experience (Pre-Cana), this preparation provides the couple the opportunity to become more fully aware of what they are committing themselves to and why.
Couples interested in beginning marriage preparation should contact Eileen Faber in the Parish Office at 978-320-4211 or CLICK HERE to email Eileen to begin the process with a parish priest or deacon as soon as possible, preferably 12 months prior to the desired wedding date.
It is best to check church availability before making a reception hall deposit.
Music for your wedding can be reviewed with our Music Director, Kelly Clark.
Contact her at 978-320-4205 or Click Here to email her
Couples preparing for marriage are required to attend some form of marriage preparation and instruction beyond the meetings with the priest/deacon.
These programs provide a wonderful opportunity for a couple to get away and focus on their relationship with each other and their loving God.
The Catechism of the Catholic Church on Marriage:
1659 | St. Paul said: "Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the Church . . . This is a great mystery, and I mean in reference to Christ and the Church" (Eph 5:25, 32).
1660 | The marriage covenant, by which a man and a woman form with each other an intimate communion of life and love, has been founded and endowed with its own special laws by the Creator. By its very nature it is ordered to the good of the couple, as well as to the generation and education of children. Christ the Lord raised marriage between the baptized to the dignity of a sacrament (cf. CIC, can. 1055 § 1; cf. GS 48 § 1).
1661 | The sacrament of Matrimony signifies the union of Christ and the Church. It gives spouses the grace to love each other with the love with which Christ has loved his Church; the grace of the sacrament thus perfects the human love of the spouses, strengthens their indissoluble unity, and sanctifies them on the way to eternal life (cf. Council of Trent: DS 1799).
1662 | Marriage is based on the consent of the contracting parties, that is, on their will to give themselves, each to the other, mutually and definitively, in order to live a covenant of faithful and fruitful love.
1663 | Since marriage establishes the couple in a public state of life in the Church, it is fitting that its celebration be public, in the framework of a liturgical celebration, before the priest (or a witness authorized by the Church), the witnesses, and the assembly of the faithful.
1664 | Unity, indissolubility, and openness to fertility are essential to marriage. Polygamy is incompatible with the unity of marriage; divorce separates what God has joined together; the refusal of fertility turns married life away from its "supreme gift," the child (GS 50 §1).
1665 | The remarriage of persons divorced from a living, lawful spouse contravenes the plan and law of God as taught by Christ. They are not separated from the Church, but they cannot receive Eucharistic communion. They will lead Christian lives especially by educating their children in the faith.
1666 | The Christian home is the place where children receive the first proclamation of the faith. For this reason the family home is rightly called "the domestic church," a community of grace and prayer, a school of human virtues and of Christian charity.