Hi, I am newly engaged, and quite honestly pretty lost as to where to begin with planning my Catholic wedding to my non-Catholic fiance. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. I'm in San Antonio, TX, so I also welcome any words of wisdom pertaining particularly to this diocese.
The situation: My fiance and I both live in San Antonio, but neither of us grew up here (thus no home church that I feel a great connection to). We want to have the wedding here though. I am a registered parishioner at a church near my home, but for various reasons I would like to have the wedding at my university's (Christian but not Catholic) chapel. I know I'll have to get permission from the bishop to have my wedding there, and I don't think it will be an issue. However, I'm running into problems finding a priest to do marriage preparation and the wedding. The pastor at my home parish told me he couldn't/wouldn't do a wedding there, and that I need to find a different priest. He suggested contacting a church near the university. I contacted the new church, and their pastor recently passed away and they will not be appointed a new pastor until August. They have 2 priests saying mass, but they are kind of temporary; neither one has an office at the church and the secretary didn't think either would be able to commit to marrying us and doing the preparation. The secretary at the university's chapel office told me that Catholic weddings are performed there, but you have to find your own priest. The priest who does student masses there is not affiliated with the university and the secretary wasn't able to give me his name/number. I'm not sure what to do at this point - do I keep calling churches until I find a priest willing to marry us? Do I wait until the church near the university gets a new pastor, and try again? Are there any other options? I don't really know any priests and I really don't want to wait until August to get started on this; I want to get married next March or April and am itching to set a date.
And then a few other questions...
Has anyone had issues with getting married during Lent?
Has anyone been married by a deacon? With my fiance not being Catholic, I would consider not having a full mass. If you're married by a deacon, does he do your marriage preparation also?