Parish day of Prayer for Marriage & Family Life
Wednesday 20th January
Proposed Theme: Couples getting married in the parish this year
One of the victims of the Covid-19 pandemic over the past year has been weddings. Many couple have had to postpone their wedding date, not knowing clearly when to rearrange it. Others have had to postpone making the decision of a date to see what happens this year. This uncertainty is a real pressure on the couples. They need our support and encouragement until we are through this difficult time.
Pope Francis: We need to help young people to discover the beauty and dignity of marriage. They should be helped to perceive the attraction of a complete union that elevates and perfects the social dimension of existence, gives sexuality its deepest meaning, and benefits children by offering them the best context for their growth and development. (The Joy of Love No. 205)
I encourage Christian communities to recognise the great benefits that they themselves receive from supporting engaged couples as they grow in love. (The Joy of Love No. 207)
· One the most important decisions a person will ever make is the decision to get married. It will change that person’s life forever
· Along with this is the decision of whom to marry!
· And then there is the decision of where to get married.
Many people are making those decisions and implementing them in our parish this coming year. They need our prayers.
The question of where to get married is a very real one for couples today. There was a time, not too long ago, when it was taken for granted that almost every wedding would be in the church. That is no longer the case. Some choose to be married in the Registry Office, others in an hotel or other such place in a civil ceremony. But many couples continue to choose a wedding in the Church.
It is to these latter that we owe special care because they choose to marry among us.
It is mandatory for couples getting married in the Catholic Church to do a Marriage Preparation course. This doesn’t always happen, and this is a great loss. The purpose of these courses is to make sure that the couples know what they are doing by getting married among us and are able to do it with joy. It is the responsibility of the parish community to encourage these couples to prepare well. It is a great benefit for the couples themselves. It is also of benefit to the whole community as they set out on their new journey of faith and love.