The Sacrament of Matrimony
The matrimonial covenant, by which a man and a woman establish between themselves a partnership of the whole of life, is by its nature ordered toward the good of the spouses and the procreation and education of offspring; this covenant between baptized persons has been raised by Christ the Lord to the dignity of a sacrament. (CCC 1601)
Jesus answered, ‘Have you not read that the one who made them at the beginning “made them male and female”, and said, “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh”? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.’ (Matt 19:4-6)
Couples who plan to marry in a Catholic Church in N.H. should register with their parish church at least six months before the celebration. The marriage usually takes place in the parish where either the bride or the groom has been an active member.
There is a three-step process of preparation with the priest:
The couple works through a FOCUS questionnaire which is for their benefit. This usually helps them to know and understand each other better.
They choose one of the approved marriage preparation programs or retreats in the diocese.
The actual preparation for the marriage ceremony.