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Outdoor Weddings

Priest at outdoor wedding?

Is it possible to have a preist perform the ceremony at an outdoor wedding? We are Catholic and would like a priest to marry us however we dont know if we can.
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Re: Priest at outdoor wedding?

  •  My FI and I are Catholic and the church won't marry us outside. So we've decided to get married outside anyway. I hope you have better luck. It is better to ask now, so if the dioceses decline your request you can make a decision that is best for you.
  • We looked into a priest marring us outside as well, and he would not do it! We are getting married ont he Cape and he said the bishop had made the ruling. We are seeing if we can find a retired Priest that may perform the ceremony.

  • A priest cannot marry you outside of a church building.  You can look for someone else to officiate your ceremony, but I believe the Catholic church will not consider you to have received the sacrament of matrimony in that case. AKA you will not be married in the eyes of the Catholic church.  I'm not 100% sure on that though.  Try the Catholic Weddings board, they probably have a more thorough answer.
  • I am also Catholic, and have been told that priests only marry in the church building itself.

    You may be able to get a deacon to perform a ceremony outside a church, not sure. That's the direction I'll be going. It may or may not be sanctioned, but at this point, trying to find churches that will marry non-parishioners has just about taxed me.

    It really stinks, because I've had all the sacraments, and because I happen to want to have a ceremony in a chapel that is not Catholic, I can't get a priest to do it. Same with outdoors.

  • No a priest won't marry you outside.  I would avoid asking this on the catholic board because they will make snotty comments and be really rude....been there and done that. learn from my mistake. 
  • I am getting married on the beach and found a Catholic priest to marry us....Father Carroll located in Linden NJ for a fee..706 Lindegar Street
    Linden, NJ 07036
     Phone: 908-925-4546

    I talked to him on the phone and he is a sweetheart...

    Good luck...

  • I was raised Catholic but have been attending church as a Christian and my FI is Christian so we decided to have a Pastor perform our beach ceremony. We don't go to church alot but wanted a Pastor instead of Justice Of The Peace. So you can go outside your main Religion if you don't find a Priest and still want it to be a religious ceremony! Best of luck!!

  • mbcdefgmbcdefg
    10000 Comments Combo Breaker 5 Love Its
    member
    edited December 2009
    A Catholic priest will not perform a ceremony outside of a church. There ARE exceptions, but they are very rare.

    Those of you having former or rent-a-priests perform your wedding, be aware that the Catholic Church will not recognize it because it will not consider it a sacrament (even if the ceremony is perfectly legal with the state).

    This type of ceremony may be a good solution for you if you want Catholic elements to your wedding, but if you do not need the Church's approval of it. If your main concern is being married outside (which is fine), by all means do it, but realize that this means giving up the Church's blessing. I am sure you can find another Christian minister, or a secular officiant, who will tailor the ceremony to your liking. But if you want the Church to recognize your marriage, then you must be married in a church.

    Even if you're not sure that a Catholic wedding (and marriage, more importantly) is for you, I would consider making an appointment with a priest to talk about your concerns. Maybe he will make you feel more comfortable about the Catholic marriage experience, or mabye he can just help confirm your feelings if you wind up thinking that this isn't the route you want to take (which is fine). You could also attend a few Masses in your area to see if you feel particularly at home with one church or priest, because maybe if you feel a spiritual connection then you would be more open to the idea of marrying in a church.

    But if you have no interest in a Catholic marriage and/or attending Masses, then pesonally I don't even see why a Catholic wedding would make sense in the first place, and therefore you should have the pretty outdoor ceremony that you originally wanted. There's absolutely nothing wrong with not being interested in religion, but don't go through the motions with a Catholic wedding ceremony if you don't intend to follow through with the faith after the wedding's over.
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  • I am having an outdoor ceremony with a Catholic Priest, he's retired and he can marry us anywhere.
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  • DO you mind sharing the name of your retired catholic priest? I'm also having an outdoor wedding and looking for a retired priest to perform my ceremony. eafreeman09@gmail.com

  • Same here, trying to find a catholic priest to marry us outdoors. If anyone has any info on a retired priest  the area of aberdeen,nj please share. Good luck girls.
  • In Response to Re: Priest at outdoor wedding?:
    A Catholic priest will not perform a ceremony outside of a church. There ARE exceptions, but they are very rare. Those of you having former or rent-a-priests perform your wedding, be aware that the Catholic Church will not recognize it because it will not consider it a sacrament (even if the ceremony is perfectly legal with the state). This type of ceremony may be a good solution for you if you want Catholic elements to your wedding, but if you do not need the Church's approval of it. If your main concern is being married outside (which is fine), by all means do it, but realize that this means giving up the Church's blessing. I am sure you can find another Christian minister, or a secular officiant, who will tailor the ceremony to your liking. But if you want the Church to recognize your marriage, then you must be married in a church. Even if you're not sure that a Catholic wedding (and marriage, more importantly) is for you, I would consider making an appointment with a priest to talk about your concerns. Maybe he will make you feel more comfortable about the Catholic marriage experience, or mabye he can just help confirm your feelings if you wind up thinking that this isn't the route you want to take (which is fine). You could also attend a few Masses in your area to see if you feel particularly at home with one church or priest, because maybe if you feel a spiritual connection then you would be more open to the idea of marrying in a church. But if you have no interest in a Catholic marriage and/or attending Masses, then pesonally I don't even see why a Catholic wedding would make sense in the first place, and therefore you should have the pretty outdoor ceremony that you originally wanted. There's absolutely nothing wrong with not being interested in religion, but don't go through the motions with a Catholic wedding ceremony if you don't intend to follow through with the faith after the wedding's over.
    Posted by mbcdefg
    When did she say she was questioning marriage, her faith or that she didn't regularly attend church? I must have missed that or you are making some serious assumptions.
    ~basquing in the wedded bliss~
  • Those of you who are having a "retired" Priest officiate the wedding are probably having a Priest who left the Roman Catholic church or is an independent Priest or Deacon who is not recognized by Roman.  It is very rare (needs approval from the Bishop) that a Roman Catholic Priest or Deacon can officiate a wedding anywhere but inside the Church.

    I am an independent Catholic Priest who does officiate outdoor weddings but they are not recognized by the Roman Catholic church.  It is possible to obtain a dispensation as to absence of form later on and have it recognized.  I have also had some couples with a sympathatic Priest who would perform the ceremony in the Church before hand and then the outdoor ceremony performed by non Roman Catholic clergy is simply a renewal of vows.  This is something I always like to be clear with couples about when I officiate their weddings.  www.christianlifeevents.org
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