Saint Paul Church
SAINT PAUL PARISH
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On behalf of St. Paul Parish, congratulations to you on your engagement and on your decision to enter into the holy and joyful state of marriage. Jesus’ first miracle took place at the wedding feast of Cana. We hope to be of assistance in making your ceremony a solemn celebration of God’s love for you and your love for each other. Due to the seriousness and sacredness of marriage, you will need to prepare for your special day. The following Church requirements must be followed and will help you to prepare properly for the wedding ceremony and more importantly, your life together as husband and wife.
DATE AND TIME
Marriages are usually celebrated on Saturday at 12 noon or 2:00 PM at St. Paul Church. In order to ensure persons’ sincere desire to be married at St Paul Parish, a date is not reserved unless a $200.00 deposit has been received. This is non-refundable and may be subtracted from final offerings due the parish.
CERTIFICATES AND PAPERWORK
A Pre-Cana Workshop is required for all engaged couples. The Pre-Cana Workshop is based on the four major aspects of marriage: Spirituality, Communication, Adjustment and Sexuality. Pre-Cana Workshops may be taken in any (Arch) Diocese.
For information on Workshops scheduled in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia you may visit their website at: http://phillycatholiclife.org/marriage-and-family/preparing-for-marriage/. Click on Options for Marriage Preparation on the right side, scroll to bottom of page and the click on “Online registration”. Or, you may call the Family Life Office directly at: 215-587-3561.
It is also possible to complete your Marriage Preparation (Pre-Cana) online. You may visit the website: http://www.catholicmarriagepreponline.com/. However, this is not recommended. Couples find it worthwhile to do their Pre-Cana with other couples because they can pick up a lot of information just talking to others. Marriage is a relationship and marriage preparation is best done in relationship with other couples.
When you have completed your Pre-Cana, preferably several months before your wedding, please return the Certificate of Attendance to the St. Paul rectory.
PREPARING FOR THE WEDDING LITURGY
The Nuptial Mass or the Nuptial Ceremony is first and foremost a public act of worship of the Catholic Church. It is within this context that the Sacrament of Marriage is celebrated.
MUSIC FOR YOUR WEDDING AT ST PAUL PARISH
The Sacrament of Marriage is greatly enhanced by the use of Sacred Liturgical music. Whether the bride and groom choose a Nuptial Mass or a Nuptial Ceremony, appropriate Liturgical music, properly placed, serves to focus the attention of the assembled and leads them to the source of love itself – Who is God. We want you to have the best Liturgical music possible. Our Coordinator of Liturgical Music is contractually responsible for and will guide you in choosing liturgical music. She must be made aware of and approve the music that is selected.
SPECIFIC MUSICAL NORMS
MUSIC FEES AND PAYMENT OF FEES
A NOTE ABOUT PARKING
St. Paul Church has no parking and no parking lot. Commercial and street parking is available in the neighborhood, where permitted. There are 2-hour permit parking lots on Christian Street between South 7th. and South 8th. Streets and on South 8th. Street between Montrose and Washington Avenue. There is a pay lot at the Superfresh Food Store (located at 10th. and South) with their lot entrance located on South 11th. Street, just North of South Street. Please contact Michele Gambino at [email protected] to inquire about renting the Italian Market parking lot, located on Carpenter Street.
SOME PRACTICALITIES FOR THE WEDDING DAY
Floral arrangements are made by the couple. We recommend one arrangement on either side of the Tabernacle. These arrangements are a donation to the church; therefore, they must remain on the altar after the liturgy. Flowers may be attached to designated pews however, tape or other damaging adhesives are not permitted to preserve the pews.
Our church floor is made of ornate ceramic tiles causing any type of runner to buckle making it very dangerous when people walk, especially during processions. Since this is extremely hazardous, we PROHIBIT the use of an aisle runner here in St. Paul’s Church. This policy has been made effective for insurance reasons as well as for the safety of all concerned because of prior accidents.
Candles of any kind are not permitted in the body of the church due to fire hazards.
THE WEDDING OR UNITY CANDLE
The so called Wedding or “Unity Candle”, introduced in many places into the Rite of Marriage and often after the exchange of vows has never been part of the Roman Catholic Liturgy of Marriage and fails to adequately express the theological meaning of the Rite. In fact, the ceremony that frequently accompanies the lighting of this candle detracts from the central and most significant dimension of the Sacramental Rite, the Exchange of Vows itself which is followed by the Blessing and Exchange of Rings. The Exchange of Vows is the Sacramental action of unity and its primary symbol. In both the Rite of Marriage during Mass and the Rite of Marriage outside Mass the use of the Wedding or Unity Candle is thus prohibited. We are aware that these items are expensive and that someone may have already gifted this to you. As an alternative, and to prevent offense to a loved one, we often recommend that it be lit at some point during your reception.
VISIT TO THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY ALTAR
The practice of the bride and groom visiting the Marian altar or shrine following the celebration of the Sacrament of Marriage should reflect sincere devotion to Mary, the Mother of the Lord. The Rite of Marriage makes no reference to this devotional practice; therefore, if it does take place, it occurs after the Concluding Rites of the Mass/Ceremony. This is an optional practice.
RECEIVING LINE OR PICTURES IN CHURCH
In order to maintain enough time between weddings and provide reverence during our Confession time and preparation for those attending the Anticipated Mass for Sunday on Saturday evening, we ask that the bride and groom decide either to have a receiving line or to take TWENTY MINUTES for photos. We ask everyone to maintain the utmost respect for the Blessed Sacrament at all times.
PRESENTATION OF THE GIFTS OF BREAD AND WINE
In addition, you may choose two people who will present the gifts of bread and wine at Mass.
RING BEARER/FLOWER GIRL
If they are participating in the Entrance Procession, they must be at least 7 years of age or else be accompanied by an adult. Children are not permitted to throw flowers petals on the floor of the church.
THE CHURCH IS A SACRED PLACE
At no time may alcoholic beverages be present or consumed in St. Paul Church, St. Mary Magdalen de Pazzi Church, St. Paul Rectory or on any of the Parish grounds. Balloons are not permitted to be brought into the Church. Also, no rice, confetti, birdseed, or flower petals are permitted to be thrown on Church property and no aisle runners are permitted to be used inside of the church. Festive items such as bells or bubbles may be used outside of the church.
Please have your photographer/videographer see the priest before the wedding. They may not be in the Sanctuary. Afterwards, pictures may be taken in the church for 20 MINUTES. We ask that they please keep a respectful tone and attitude mindful of the rites that are taking place.
On the evening of your rehearsal, you are asked to bring with you the following items:
A: Wedding Fee is $1000.00 less a $200.00 deposit made once date is reserved. This deposit fee is non-refundable should the date be cancelled.
Our Coordinator of Liturgical Music will assist in the outline of your program if you choose to have one. The Coordinator of Liturgical Music must review a copy of it before it goes to print. Once your program is approved you may bring them to the wedding rehearsal. For your convenience a sample Order of Mass/Ceremony is provided in the back of the Booklet.
WEDDING MASS PLANNER
Please begin to fill out, and bring any questions you have regarding this worksheet, to your consultation with the priest . This worksheet may downloaded from the section WEDDING MASS PLANNER WORKSHEET, the 3rd item from the bottom of this page.
The wedding rehearsal and the ceremony take place in church; therefore, your attendants should be dressed accordingly and prepared to be fully attentive to the priest conducting the rehearsal. The Wedding Liturgy celebrates the sacrament of marriage and should not be treated as a fashion display of dresses and tuxedos. Modesty in dress is a sign of respect in and out of church.
THE SACRAMENT OF PENANCE
Please encourage everyone to receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation before the rehearsal. If someone needs to go to confession that night, please inform the priest.
Please remember that as a newly married couple you should be registered in a parish. If you wish to remain in St. Paul Parish, please inform the Pastor before your wedding. If you are joining another parish, please register there immediately after the honeymoon.