“The intimate community of life and love which constitutes the married state has been established by the Creator and endowed by him with its own proper laws. . . . God himself is the author of marriage.”87 The vocation to marriage is written in the very nature of man and woman as they came from the hand of the Creator. Marriage is not a purely human institution despite the many variations it may have undergone through the centuries in different cultures, social structures, and spiritual attitudes. These differences should not cause us to forget its common and permanent characteristics. Although the dignity of this institution is not transparent everywhere with the same clarity,88 some sense of the greatness of the matrimonial union exists in all cultures. “The well-being of the individual person and of both human and Christian society is closely bound up with the healthy state of conjugal and family life.”89
God who created man out of love also calls him to love the fundamental and innate vocation of every human being. For man is created in the image and likeness of God who is himself love.90 Since God created him man and woman, their mutual love becomes an image of the absolute and unfailing love with which God loves man. It is good, very good, in the Creator’s eyes. And this love which God blesses is intended to be fruitful and to be realized in the common work of watching over creation: “And God blessed them, and God said to them: ‘Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth and subdue it.’”91
Holy Scripture affirms that man and woman were created for one another: “It is not good that the man should be alone.”92 The woman, “flesh of his flesh,” his equal, his nearest in all things, is given to him by God as a “helpmate”; she thus represents God from whom comes our help.93 ”Therefore a man leaves his father and his mother and cleaves to his wife, and they become one flesh.”94 The Lord himself shows that this signifies an unbreakable union of their two lives by recalling what the plan of the Creator had been “in the beginning”: “So they are no longer two, but one flesh.”95
Paragraphs 1603 through 1605, Catechism of the Catholic Church
Couples who wish to be married at St. Margaret must meet certain criteria and adhere to specific policies. Some policies are set by the Diocese of Tucson and some are specific to St. Margaret.
St. Margaret only prepares active and registered parishioners for the Sacrament of Matrimony. (Active means attending Mass, using tithing envelopes, and/or volunteering at St. Margaret.)
We typically reserve the use of our church for the weddings of parishioners. In keeping with our Catholic understanding of the sacramental life, it is most appropriate for couples to prepare and wed at the church they attend.
Remind your photographer that there is no photography or videography permitted during the Mass (photos are allowed during the processional and recessional, and group shots may be taken in the church afterwards.)
To be eligible for marriage preparation at St. Margaret:
- If not registered and living within parish boundaries, couples must register prior to seeking permission from the pastor to begin marriage preparation. The pastor reserves the right to prolong preparation based on circumstances.
- If not registered and living outside the boundaries, couples must register and be active for six months before they seek permission from the pastor to begin marriage preparation.
- Marriage preparation is at minimum a nine-month process. The first step in preparation should be contact with the pastor for approval and admission to the program.
Couples are strongly advised to refrain from setting a date with venues/vendors until the pastor approves and confirms the date at the church.
Please note that we only work with the couple. Phone calls from friends and family will not be accepted.
The goal of the marriage preparation process is to educate couples on the full truth of the Church’s teaching on the sacred and sacramental nature of marriage and family life and provide them with the tools for a fulfilling and successful marriage.
To begin marriage preparation, please contact the parish office to request an appointment.