Formal Marriage Preparation programs
in the Diocese of Sacramento
Every engaged couple wishing to be married in the Diocese of Sacramento – whether theirs is a first-time marriage, a convalidation, or a re-marriage – must attend a formal diocesan-approved marriage preparation program. This is to be completed during the first four months of their preparation. Since the last few weeks prior to their wedding are filled with so many practical details, it is important that the engaged couple spend quality time early on to prepare themselves for the Sacrament of Matrimony.
There are three different formal marriage preparation programs in the Diocese of Sacramento. The pastor or his delegate will meet with the engaged couple to determine the program that best meets the couple’s needs:
(1) Parish-based marriage preparation class. These classes consist of four to six short sessions (one to two hours) usually spaced a week apart, held in small group settings at a host parish. Though a host parish will offer these classes mainly for the sake of its own engaged couples, it may also welcome couples from other parishes.
(2) Engaged Encounter Weekend. This is a weekend retreat experience presented by two married Catholic couples and a priest. It is designed to help engaged couples self-reflect, communicate, understand their sexuality, etc. The main thrust of the weekend is personal reflection and dialogue. The retreat is offered five times per year at local retreat center. For more information and to register go to http://SacEE.org.
(3) Online Marriage Preparation. For engaged couples unable to attend either a parish-based marriage preparation class or the Engaged Encounter weekend, an online course is available. This interactive course lasts from one week (minimum) to three months (maximum) depending upon the couple’s pace. Each couple is assigned a personal instructor who follows them throughout the course. For more information and to register, click here