Getting Married at Saint Margaret Mary Parish.
We love to do weddings at St. Margaret Mary Parish and want to do everything we can to encourage couples to celebrate this wonderful sacrament in our parish.
Getting Started: Couples who are planning on getting married at St. Margaret Mary should speak with the Pastor, at least 6 months before the ceremony. This is especially important if either party has been married before, regardless of religious affiliation. No date or time may be set until after an initial meeting with our Pastor (781-326-1071).
Possible Dates and Times: Technically speaking, Catholics may get married on any day except Good Friday and Holy Saturday. However, there is always a need to work around the parish Mass and feast day schedule. Because of possible funerals and the Saturday evening Mass, weddings may be celebrated anytime from noon - 3:00 PM and after 5:30 PM on Saturdays. Weddings may be celebrated from 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM on Sundays. Other times and days during the week should be discussed with our Pastor.
Fees: For weddings St. Margaret Mary's Parish charges a $250 fee. In addition the organist and cantor each charge a $200 fee. These fees may be revised at any time.
The Marriage License: Couples need to obtain a marriage license from the state of Massachusetts before the wedding can take place. They can do so at any town or city hall in the state and the license is good for any place of marriage within the state.
Getting Married in Another Church or Place with the Church's Blessing: Two Catholics who celebrate the sacrament of marriage do so in front of a priest or deacon in a Catholic church or chapel. The only exception for this is for serious pastoral reason and the permission of the bishop. However, when a Catholic marries someone who is not Catholic, other options are available:
- A Catholic and another Christian - the wedding my take place in a Catholic church or chapel or the church or chapel of the non-Catholic. Either the priest or minister may preside regardless of where it is celebrated (The presider is normally the minister or priest of the hosting church).
- A Catholic and non-baptized person - the wedding may take place in a Catholic church or chapel, the place of worship of the non-baptized party (such as Jewish temple), a non-denominational place of worship, or other building. Note: it is very rare that permission is given for an outdoor wedding.
Any Catholic who wishes to have his or her marriage recognized by the church should contact the Pastor. He is more than willing to help you with paperwork even if the wedding is not being celebrated in our parish or by him anywhere else.
Planning your wedding ceremony.
At St. Margaret Mary Parish, we want to do everything we can to help you plan your wedding so that it is a memorable and beautiful ceremony for you and your family.
Mass or Wedding Ceremony?: In the past, Catholics married each other within the celebration of a Mass. Today, while we still encourage active Catholics to do so, there are other reasons and circumstances that may lead to a marriage ceremony rather than a Mass. If the wedding day is either a Saturday or a Sunday, the priest may not be able to celebrate a Mass for you as he already has or will celebrate two-three other Masses during the day. Under church law, he is limited to how many Masses he can commit himself to each day. In addition, more and more Catholics are marrying non-Catholics. Even when celebrated in a Catholic church, the celebration of a Mass would not be appropriate as the non-Catholic and his or her family would not know how to participate in the Mass and be invited to receive Holy Communion. In this case, it is a matter of hospitality and not any condemnation or judgment concerning the faith of others. A wedding ceremony when celebrated and planned well can be a wonderful expression of shared faith and prayer.
The Rehearsal: Rehearsal may be scheduled at your convenience dependent on the church's availability.
Readings: You and your fiance may choose the readings from Scripture that will be proclaimed at your wedding. Within a Catholic ceremony, only readings from the Bible are read. If you choose to have two readings before the Gospel, the first one is to be from the Old Testament and the second from the New Testament. Please speak with the priest or deacon who will be celebrating your wedding for you about any questions you may have. Here are our suggested readings for use at a Catholic wedding.
Readers and Lectors: You are welcome to ask a family member or friend who is a baptized Catholic to read at your wedding. It is recommended that you choose someone who regularly serves as a lector in their parish or who at the minimum has public speaking experience.
Flowers, Candles and Decorations: You are welcome to bring flowers into the church for your wedding and leave them for use at other Masses during the week. If you are planning on taking them with you after the ceremony, please let us know so that we may plan accordingly. Your florist should take a look at the church if he or she is not familiar with it and if the florist is bringing in anything extra, (trees, plants, etc.) please let him or her know that it will need to picked up right after the ceremony. Please make sure all decorations, pew bows, etc. are taken down immediately after the wedding. Because weekends in the church are so very busy, we are asking everyone to leave the church just as they found it so that the space can be ready for the next baptism, wedding or parish mass. Thank you so much for your cooperation.
Candle Lighting Ceremony: For safety sake, we do not allow candles to be placed on the pews, even if they are in protective globes. You may use a unity candle if you would like but you need to purchase it and to bring it with the holder. The church does not have one. However, from experience we have found that the candlelighting is not a very appropriate service when done at weddings in the good weather when it is so light out. It is also a difficult ritual to do especially for the bride in her bridal gown. If you are having a Nuptial Mass it is a bit much to add the candle ceremony.
Photos and Videos: We are happy to welcome your photographer. We ask that they use common sense and not move about too much, but they are free to take pictures as they see fit. They are welcome to speak to the priest/deacon before hand if they have any questions.