The Necessary Steps to Get Married in the Diocese of Saginaw

You and your future spouse are excited about being married and we are here to help. If you are not connected to a parish, feel free to call us with any questions

1. Contact Your Parish

Contact and meet with your parish priest, deacon or pastoral administrator as soon as you become engaged. At this meeting you will:

  • Set and/or confirm the wedding date
  • Complete the required church pre-marriage forms
  • Acquire baptismal certificates
  • Make arrangements to complete the marriage preparation program required by the parish.

2. Complete the Marriage Preparation Program outlined by your parish

The church requires you to begin your marriage preparation at least six months before your wedding date. During this time of preparation, you and your fiancé will be given the opportunity to focus on your relationship readiness, skills and expectations for a lifelong marriage and understanding Catholic marriage as a sacrament.

  • Some of the topics covered include: marriage as a sacrament, communication, conflict resolution, parenting, balancing careers and family life, finances, family of origin and Catholic understanding of Iintimacy, sex and procreation, and natural family planning.
  • A pre-marriage inventory (PREPARE/ENRICH, FOCCUS programs)
  • Your pastor will help you determine the appropriate marriage preparation course for you.

3. Plan the Wedding Liturgy

Meet with your parish priest, deacon or pastoral minister to plan the liturgy for your wedding ceremony:

  • Marriage between two Catholics is normally celebrated with Mass.
  • Marriage between a Catholic and a baptized non-Catholic may be celebrated inside or outside the Mass.
  • Marriage between a Catholic and an unbaptized person is celebrated within the Liturgy of the Word.

4. Obtain Marriage License

A valid marriage license is required prior to the celebration of your wedding ceremony.

We offer the two workshops below to help couples prepare for marriage:

Marriage Preparation Workshop

A one-day workshop that will help couples understand what it means to get married in the Catholic Church and what makes the Sacrament of Marriage different from marriage in the secular world. Among the topics presented are: marriage as a sacrament, marital intimacy, natural family planning, parenting, communication, conflict resolution and family of origin.

Prepare/Enrich Seminar

A one-day seminar that utilizes a customized couple assessment tool to offer a skill-based seminar in which a couple’s strength and growth areas are identified. This seminar will explore personality traits, strengthen communication skills, resolve conflicts and reduce stress, compare family backgrounds and establish personal, couple and family goals. This seminar is appropriate for couples of all ages preparing for marriage, for couples discerning marriage or for married couples who would like to fine tune their relationship.

Please consult with your parish priest or pastoral administrator regarding what is required by your parish for marriage preparation.