Parishioners who have participated in a Catholic marriage preparation process are welcome to celebrate the Sacrament of Marriage at St. Francis of Assisi Parish.

  • Couples should contact the pastor at least a year before their desired wedding date to make arrangements.
  • Please note that a date cannot be set until the first meeting with the pastor.

Preparation for the Sacrament of Marriage begins 9-12 months before your anticipated wedding day. There are many factors that can slow down the process, so it is important to begin right away. We also encourage you to wait for this first meeting before making deposits on a banquet facility.

All individuals (Catholic, non-Catholic, unbaptized) who have been previously married and divorced and who wish to marry in the Catholic Church, need to have their previous marriage(s) declared invalid through the annulment process by the Springfield Diocesan Tribunal before marrying again.

You may petition for an annulment without having any marriage plans. Annulments are to be completed before beginning the marriage preparation process.



The Catholic Church believes marriage is a covenant by which a man and a woman establish between themselves a partnership for the whole of life.  This partnership, by its very nature, is for the good of the spouses and the procreation and education of their children. When this covenant is made by two baptized persons, it is a sacrament: a sign of the covenant between Christ and his Church.

God himself is love, and He created every human being, man and woman, in His image and likeness. Therefore, love is the fundamental and innate vocation of every human being. The mutual love between a man and a woman becomes an image of the absolute and unfailing love of God.

Marriage in the Catholic Church is a celebration of the whole Church community. The spouses themselves are the ministers of the marriage and they confer the Sacrament of Matrimony upon each other by expressing their consent before the Church. Their marriage, as a sacrament, becomes then a sign of Christ’s love and commitment to the Church.

The Sacrament of Marriage requires a period of preparation according to Church and Civil law. The liturgical celebration (Wedding) is governed by the Liturgical Rite of Marriage and its norms.

To read more: Catechism of the Catholic Church (1601-1666)