How Catholics Define Marriage
“The matrimonial covenant, by which a man and a woman establish between themselves a partnership of the whole life, is by nature ordered toward the good of the spouses and the procreating and education of offspring; this covenant between baptized persons has been raised by Christ the Lord to the dignity of a sacrament.” – Code of Canon Law, #1055
Welcome! Thank you for choosing to celebrate the Sacrament of Marriage here at the Church of the Good Shepherd! This is an exciting time for you as a couple, as you prepare to unite your hearts and your lives in this wonderful sacrament, which recalls for us Christ’s own commitment to His bride – the Church.
The pastoral staff at Good Shepherd take both the Sacrament of Marriage and its preparation very seriously. We trust that you will, too! We look forward to this journey with you.
To properly prepare for your wedding and for the vocation of married life, we request that you contact the parish at least six months prior to the intended wedding date. Weddings are one-hour ceremonies. Marriages are life-time commitments. Therefore, our priorities in assisting couples who wish to marry at Good Shepherd are:
- The quality of your commitment to each other
- The requirements of the Catholic Church for a valid marriage
- The wedding ceremony itself
A comprehensive booklet which will assist you with all of your preparations for the Sacrament of Marriage is available at the church office.
- A recent Baptism certificate from the church in which you were baptized, issued within six months prior to the date of your wedding
- Certificates of Communion and Confirmation
- A marriage license from the City of New York which should be presented to the priest one week prior to the wedding
- A Pre-Cana certificate
The parish fee for your wedding is $650. This fee includes the organist and cantor. A non-refundable deposit of $200 to hold the date and time of the wedding is required after meeting with the priest for the first time. The balance of the fees is due no less than one month prior to the wedding.
Additionally, a separate, refundable cash security of $200 is required one month before the wedding. This security will be returned to you on the day of the wedding provided:
- The wedding rehearsal and ceremony begin on time.
- No flower petals, rice, confetti, birdseed etc…are thrown inside or outside of the church.
If you are more than twenty minutes late, the celebrant has the right to change the Mass to a simple ceremony. Additionally the organist and singer have the right to cancel without reimbursement.
If you live within the territorial boundaries of the parish, but are not registered in any parish, permission to be married at Good Shepherd is at the discretion of the pastor.
All music for your ceremony will be coordinated through our Music Director, Phyllis Katz. She will also arrange for a cantor/soloist and any other instruments. It is important to phone her directly at (212) 942-6619 for a consultation. Due to scheduling purposes, six months in advance is recommended. Please do not make other arrangements without speaking to the pastor first. Additional fees may be required for outside musicians.