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Saint Joseph - Hessen Cassel

Fort Wayne, Indiana




May the grace and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you!

Congratulations are in order. Please know of our parish’s great joy over your promise of marriage and your desire to have your marriage witnessed in the Catholic Church at St. Joseph Parish Hessen Cassel.

This information is meant to assist you through the sometimes complicated and twisty path that leads to your wedding day. It also intends to help explain the difference between planning that wedding day and planning a lifelong marriage. But it is most important that you realize our parish’s desire is for a happy marriage as well as a well planned wedding day.

Holy marriage is a sacrament and as such our church not only should but has the responsibility of providing the review of teaching and the practice of living the vocation of Christian marriage. As such no wedding dates are ever confirmed until such time as the couple meets with the parish pastor or his representative to speak about living that very special vocation of being husband and wife. I often say it takes three to make the sacrament a reality, a bride and a groom and the Lord himself.

Here are some of the ideas that we share about marriage so that the celebration of the wedding will clearly remind the bride and groom of their commitment and be instructive to the clergy and all the other wedding guests of the sacredness of the marriage bond.


1.    One of those contracting marriage must be a fully initiated member of the Catholic Church; that is to say baptized, confirmed, and regularly attending mass and receiving Holy Communion at the Eucharist.

2.    Both the bride and the groom have received the age of majority that is eighteen years of age. (Canon Law sets the age a little lower but it is the policy of this Diocese and the State of Indiana that you have received your legal majority, eighteen.)

3.    That both of you need to be free from any Cononical impediments; for example prior marriage.

4.    The Catholic Church is opposed to co-habitation, living together, if this is your circumstance adjustments may be required.

5.    You are asked to have the intention to be married as the church understands marriage, between a man and a woman, permanent, with fidelity, and open to children.

6.    You will be asked also to take part in the Diocesan program of marriage preparation.

7.    On occasion, Catholics who are not members of the parish seek to have weddings here; these can be arranged, but the parish would ask the wedding couple to pay a fee, usually $150.00.


1.    All preparations and participation in the process are made with the priest; only he can confirm dates for weddings and establish the manner of preparation.

2.    Our parish provides a presentation and training on Natural Family Planning.  When you finalize the date you will be given the name of the trainers. In the Diocesan parish preparation program there will also be a short presentation concerning NFP.

3.    We do not neglect wedding planning. We are blessed to have a full time music director and even if you bring your own musicians, soloist, etc. you must in all cases meet with the parish music director. In addition the priest will meet with you specifically to plan the liturgy for your wedding.

4.    There is no accounting for taste, the ancient roman Cicero once said, “De gustivus non est disputadum” meaning don’t argue about taste. However as difficult as it is with modern fashion we hope that all brides can chose wedding fashions that are modest, covering shoulders, if however the gowns are strapless that some type of shawl or shoulder covering can be used. Formal wear is not required by the church only by society. Do the very best you can for we want the attire to be fitting for church and giving you the respect that is yours on your wedding day.

5.    All of the parish staff is anxious to hold the sacredness of marriage and at the same time to offer you help and service.