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catholic ceremonies?

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janinegirly

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i''m having a catholic ceremony for our wedding, although neither of us are v. religious. i''ve been asked indirectly if I''ll be having a "mass" and i just hedge the question, but what does this mean? what are the alternatives? pros and cons? thanks!
 

aprilcait

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Having a mass means not just having the weddng ceremony (i.e.: vows, "I do", etc.), but having communion, readings, a homily, etc., as well. Basically it would be a Catholic mass (like what you would have on Sundays, but likely a tad shorter) intertwined with your wedding ceremony. (Obviously, the only people attending this wedding mass would be the people invited to your wedding.) You and FI would select the readings, songs, etc. for the mass.
 

labbielove

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I''ve been to wedding ceremonies within a full mass that lasted 45 minutes, and I''ve been to non-mass Catholic ceremonies that lasted just as long. We are doing the non-mass version (or as we say "Catholic-lite") and are planning for 30-40 mins.
It depends how much you do with music, unity candle,etc.

We are having a Catholic marriage ceremony without a full mass, and we''re having 2 readings and a Gospel by the deacon (although i think only 1 reading is "required"), homily, exchange of vows, some type of sign of peace and that''s it.

Our deacon is a family friend so is letting us be very flexible with the "components'' we include, so please check with your officiant before planning the ceremony etc.

Without the full mass you are not having the offering of the gifts, the consecration of the Eucharist, the time for folks to line up and receive communion,etc. But- it''s not necessarily a time save to do so, depending on the other things you incorporate.

I think communion is a beautiful ritual, and wouldn''t want you to count it out based on time alone, we can''t have the full mass because of the site we''re using (it is a Catholic church, but it''s been moved from it''s original site, so it''s technically "inactive")

Please also note, another option is to have a Communion Service, where the officiant would bring the hosts already consecrated, although I''m not sure if a priest would go for that.
 

Kit

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catholic mass + ceremony = 1-1.5 hours.

You say you're not v religious...just want to make sure you and FI know you have to go through pre-cana and all. I am sure this is a dumb comment and you've done all your homework, but just in case thought I'd mention!

Really, check with the church that's marrying you. They will be able to tell you how long they usually take for ceremonies and also the pre-cana requirements. Each church is different.


ETA: I'm not sure why you would have a mass if you're not very religious...
 

goldenstar

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I think the decision about whether to have a mass should take into consideration who your guests are. Are they mostly practicing Catholics? If the answer is no, then maybe they would feel uncomfortable with a mass or would not appreciate it (not in a bad way, just that perhaps they wouldn''t fully understand it). Since Catholic masses involve a lot of rituals (standing, kneeling, saying the right thing at the right time) there might be confusion or discomfort during the mass. Although I think I recall you saying that your families are Catholic so this might not be a problem. Again, it depends on who your guests are.
 

JulieN

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My cousin had a mass. Only her (our) side of the family is Catholic, and the groom's side wasn't.

The awkward points were creeds, communion, what is said at the end of readings, when to stand, etc. Actually, it was in Vietnamese, so it was a little awkward for me, too. But everyone pulled through, and I don't think anyone really had a problem with it or anything.

I've never been to a Catholic wedding sans mass. It is a little long...I think the couple being married would be more comfortable if it were shorter, esp as my cousin and her husband were kneeling for a very long time (they didn't have chairs.)
 

janinegirly

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yes we''ve signed up for pre cana..

well i''m not really hung up on a mass, just didn''t know what the choices were but i do want to do what''s traditional/standard. most of the guests will be catholic. the priest is a family priest too. i think we are good catholics, but do not go to church regularly--just big holidays, so i guess this would make us not religious. we actually have a lot of time b/ween church and reception, so it''s ok if it runs longer, but i believe we are only given the church for 1 hr.
i''ll ask the priest but was curious since i''ve never actually been to a catholic mass ceremony!
 

dmamsquared

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Jan 26, 2007
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Ruffle a few feathers. Push the envelope. Stay a litltle longer. LOL Your photog will want to take pix, no doubt. It will take longer than an hour, trust me. Make your needs known. If you go sans Mass, you still have candle lighting ceremony. Mine wouldn''t go out. I wondered if that was some kind of omen.... I digress. There''s a prayer for the Blessed MOther. She has to make money too. Besides that, the Ave Maria is a real tear jerker! A rose to each mother. Yadda, yadda, yadda. And the bride should always be fashionably late. The guests need to see the groom reacts under pressure. ! Where the h... is she????
 

broadway

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Feb 6, 2007
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I am so glad I read all of this. I haven''t been to a Catholic wedding since I was 13 and I don''t remember it very much. My mom''s side is ultra-Catholic and she has been nudging me toward a Catholic ceremony. FI was already uncomfortable with the idea (his dad is a Southern Baptist Air Force Chaplain but FI is not religious AT ALL) and I think an hour-long ceremony in a church he''s possibly never set foot in might put him over the edge. Mom gets to come along while we register, she does not yet get a Catholic ceremony....
 

rms

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Date: 2/28/2007 10:15:23 PM
Author: dmamsquared
Ruffle a few feathers. Push the envelope. Stay a litltle longer. LOL Your photog will want to take pix, no doubt. It will take longer than an hour, trust me. Make your needs known. If you go sans Mass, you still have candle lighting ceremony. Mine wouldn''t go out. I wondered if that was some kind of omen.... I digress. There''s a prayer for the Blessed MOther. She has to make money too. Besides that, the Ave Maria is a real tear jerker! A rose to each mother. Yadda, yadda, yadda. And the bride should always be fashionably late. The guests need to see the groom reacts under pressure. ! Where the h... is she????
We got married without a mass, without the candle lighting ceremony, and without the prayer for the Blessed Mother. We sat on the side of the altar instead of kneeling in front of the altar. We were given choices for all of these parts and others. I opted against most of them to try to make the ceremony simple because my DH is not Catholic, but I always wanted to be married in the church. Total ceremony time was about 30 minutes. Many of my family and guests commented about how much they loved the ceremony...that it was the perfect length, not too long, not too short!
 

labbielove

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RMS,

thank you for posting this- we too are having a Catholic cermony, no mass, and were wondering really how long it would be.
our officiant is letting us be very flexible as well (he''s an ordained deacon, like a dad to me!)
so we are having 2 readings plus gospel, homily, vows, no music other than processional/recessional, and that''s it.
other than we''d like to figure some way to incorporate a sign of peace type thing if it works out.

glad to hear it will approximate 30mins, because we are hoping to do a receiving line/mingle outside the church for a bit before heading out for pics, and this way we''ll have at least 1/2 hour to do that-
 

Skippy123

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we had a 30 min ceremony with Communion added. Short and sweet.
 

Finding_Neverland

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We''re not Catholic, but we''ve been to several Catholic wedding ceremonies.

One without a Mass was shorter but there was still some prayers and readings. To us, it seemed just a bit longer than other "traditional" Christian wedding ceremonies we''d been to. Seems like it lasted about 30-45 minutes.

One we went to, they said it was gonna be a Mass wedding. It was longer than the other had been. Some kneeling, more prayers, extra "rites" the other wedding had not had. Seems that wedding lasted about an hour.

But one we went to,.......... The gal''s parents were friends with the Arch Bishop for our area so the Arch Bishop presided over the wedding. His garments were much more flamboyant than any other Priest I''ve seen, except the Pope and Cardinals on TV. They had a full Mass wedding ceremony. There was organ music, a strings ensemble, a vocal soloist, and a violin solo. So there was lots of extra music as well. The wedding ceremony and Mass lasted about 2 hours. Then the couple took pics with people at the wedding on the steps of the alter before heading out to the reception. It was absolutely THE best wedding ceremony I''ve ever attended in my life.

As a non-Catholic,....... I have to say I really enjoyed the full Mass wedding. The spirtuality and tradition of the prayers and rites was really kewl. But I have to admit, I am a pagentry pig. I love all the flourish.
 

Scooba

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Apr 10, 2006
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If you are not very religious and most of your guests aren''t Catholic I would not have a mass, I find that non-Catholics can be very uncomfortable in Catholic mass
 

rms

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Date: 3/3/2007 3:28:04 PM
Author: labbielove
RMS,

thank you for posting this- we too are having a Catholic cermony, no mass, and were wondering really how long it would be.
our officiant is letting us be very flexible as well (he''s an ordained deacon, like a dad to me!)
so we are having 2 readings plus gospel, homily, vows, no music other than processional/recessional, and that''s it.
other than we''d like to figure some way to incorporate a sign of peace type thing if it works out.

glad to hear it will approximate 30mins, because we are hoping to do a receiving line/mingle outside the church for a bit before heading out for pics, and this way we''ll have at least 1/2 hour to do that-
labbielove, we did the sign of peace...that was one part I definitely wanted. They played "Peace is Flowing Like a River" which is one of my favorite church songs from my childhood. Then we had a receiving line in the back of the church immediately after the ceremony.

As you can see if everyone''s responses here, there is lots of variation, so I hope that everything works out to make your ceremony just the way you want it!
 
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