We want more than just a happy wedding day for you; we want a happy and lasting marriage for you! Marriage is so important to your own lives, to your future family, to the Church, and to the whole community that preparation for it is taken very seriously. Such important preparation can seem overwhelming, so from a high level, the first thing is to contact the office to schedule an appointment at least 6 months to one year before your planned wedding date.
Weddings outside our cluster parishes: If you are getting married in a parish outside of our cluster and would like to have your Banns published in the bulletin contact the cluster office at least 4 weeks prior to the wedding.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Q I heard that my dad can’t walk me down the aisle for my wedding now. Is this true?
A If you would like to have your dad walk you down the aisle, this is still allowed in the Saint Henry Cluster. The Rite of the Celebration of the Sacrament of Holy Matrimony was recently translated with a few changes. The major change for the celebration of weddings is the wording of the prayers throughout the service or mass. The official prayers for weddings in the church suggest a number of options for how to begin a wedding. In some parishes or dioceses in the United States, a pastor or bishop has chosen one entrance with the priest, bride and groom, bridal party, and parents processing from the back of the church to the front, nearly identical to the procession in a Sunday mass. Here in the Saint Henry Cluster, this procession is one option. Another option is for the bride to be escorted by her father or someone else and meet the groom at the front of the church.
- Q How much does it cost to get married in the Cluster?
A The Saint Henry Cluster requests a donation of $150 for couples in the parish. For those from outside one of our parishes, the requested donation is $500. This fee is for the use of the church and the marriage preparation process in the Cluster. It covers all meetings and preparation for the couple in the Cluster. It does not include the Engaged Couples Retreat fee, musicians, or other donations you would like to make to individuals involved in your wedding. If the suggested donation is a hardship, please inform the minister you meet with at your first wedding meeting at the Cluster.
- Q What documents or paperwork do I have to fill out?
A There are a few documents completed throughout the marriage preparation process, including 2 inventories (FOCCUS and Meyers-Briggs), the M1 form (22 questions), a wedding liturgy planning form, and a wedding music planning form. At your initial meeting, a minister will walk you through all of this paperwork and when it needs to be submitted. Your wedding license from the county clerk’s office is required to be submitted to the Cluster offices 2 weeks before your wedding date. Following your wedding, the Cluster will mail this form into the state offices to complete your marriage license.
- Q I have a relative or friend who is a priest or a deacon. Can he do my wedding?
A In the Saint Henry Cluster, you are welcome to have a relative or friend who is a priest or deacon (or even a bishop) preside at your wedding. The preparation for couples in the Saint Henry Cluster is the same process (initial meeting with a minister, Engaged Couples Retreat, FOCCUS couple, etc.).
- Q I live far away from St. Henry and can’t drive back all the time for marriage preparation. What do I do?
A Please discuss any issues, such as travel requirements, at your initial meeting with a minister in the cluster. Some couples in the past have completed parts of their marriage preparation elsewhere due to distance. For example, a couple living in Seattle, WA completed their FOCCUS couple work in Seattle, WA. However, any exception to the marriage preparation process must be approved by the Saint Henry Cluster.
Here are a few resources that answer some misconceptions couples have about marriage and allow you and your future spouse to enter further into the mystery.