What therefore God has joined together, let not man put asunder.— Matthew 19:6

Marriage is “the matrimonial covenant, by which a man and a woman establish between themselves a partnership of the whole of life and is by its nature ordered toward the good of the spouses and the procreation and education of offspring; this covenant between baptized persons has been raised by Christ the Lord to the dignity of a sacrament.” (Catechism of the Catholic Church #1601)

PLANNING YOUR WEDDING AT SAINT JAMES CATHEDRAL
hands 2Congratulations on your engagement! The following information should help as you begin the process of preparing as a couple for the Sacrament of Holy Matrimony.  We accept applicants for marriage at least 6 months prior to their wedding date, to ensure there is adequate time for preparation. During the preparation process, you will have the opportunity to participate in exciting sessions with other engaged couples to learn more about marriage and how to have a successful, life-long marriage. Additionally, mentor couples will help you throughout your journey.

Wedding Times

Weddings are held at the following times, with corresponding rehearsal times assigned.

Wedding Time: Rehearsal Time:
Friday, 1:00pm Thursday, 5:00pm
Saturday, 12:00pm Friday, 3:00pm
Saturday, 2:00pm Friday, 4:00pm
Saturday, 6:00pm Friday, 5:00pm

Fees

Fees for the Cathedral are determined based on parishioner status.  The determination of status is made at the point of scheduling the date. If you are preparing here for a wedding elsewhere, your fees are $75 to cover the cost of materials.

Active Registered Parishioners:  Cathedral – $600  /  Chapel – $500
An active registered parishioner is an individual who has been attending, active, and registered at St. James Cathedral Parish for a minimum of one (1) year prior to the reservation of the wedding date.

Active Parishioners within the Diocese:  Cathedral – $1,000  /  Chapel – $750
An active parishioner within the Diocese meets all of the qualifications of an “active registered parishioner” but is registered at and regularly attends Mass at another parish within the Diocese of Orlando.

Out of the Diocese/Not Active:  Cathedral – $1,500  /  Chapel – $1,000
This rate is for applicants who are not active at any parish within the Diocese of Orlando.  They may be active members of a parish outside of the Diocese of Orlando.

Music fees are separate, at $375 total for an organist and singer.

All fees are to be paid 30 days prior to the wedding.

THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT YOUR CEREMONY

0113Every marriage celebration is given 1.5 hours.  For example,  if you have a noon wedding all pictures must be complete and the wedding party must vacate the Cathedral no later than 1:30 PM.  This time frame allows for a Mass or ceremony with approximately 30 minutes for pictures to follow (the church is not a place for a pre-photo shoot).  We recommend that you have a list of who you want in the pictures for your photographer so the process runs smoothly and you are finished and exiting the building within the time frame allotted.

Wear suitable attire.  The bridal party should be dressed in suitable attire that speaks to the holiness and sanctity of marriage.

Limited space at the Cathedral.  Because of the limited space in the Cathedral, the entire bridal party must arrive at Church already dressed in their wedding garments. This includes the bride.  Groomsmen and the groom may arrive 30 minutes prior to the wedding time.  Groom and groomsmen will wait in a room off the transept area, except for the gentleman who will assist with the seating of the guests.  The bride and bridesmaids must arrive at the Cathedral no later than 20 minutes before the wedding time.  We have a small bride’s room, with a bathroom at the back of the Cathedral where they wait.  If desired, the bride may stay in her car outside the Cathedral until she is ready to walk down the aisle.

Large parties need more time to process.  If you have a large wedding party (more than 10 couples) who will be walking down the aisle, you will need to plan on the bridal procession beginning 10 minutes prior to the scheduled wedding time. Please let us know ahead of time so that this can be coordinated.

Early is on-time.  On-time is LATE!  Your rehearsal is scheduled when you schedule the wedding. Please be prompt.  We allow 45 minutes for each rehearsal.  The wedding needs to also begin promptly at your scheduled time.  If it does not, things may have to be cut from the ceremony or you may lose the opportunity for pictures following the wedding.

We are here to help you.  You will be assigned a coordinator; they will run the rehearsal as well as make sure all goes smoothly at the wedding.

The Cathedral is a “food-free” zone.  You are expected to observe the proper reverence for the Cathedral building at all times. Please do not bring water bottles, coffee or any beverages, chewing gum or food into the Cathedral.

Groomsmen in front of cathedralPlease remember to bring your civil marriage license to the wedding rehearsal.

Only two flower arrangements are permitted on the altar. If you are taking the arrangements, please arrange for the florist or family member to remove them immediately following the ceremony so they are cleared away before the following Mass begins.  Please make sure that all flowers are pinned on the men or that someone is there to pin on the boutonnieres for them.

No aisle runners are permitted due to safety precautions

Pew bows are allowed, but not provided. These should be attached by proper holders – usually provided by the florist, or tied.  No scotch tape or nails or thumbtacks are allowed to be used on the pews.

Bring your accessories with you.  Pew bows and  programs  should be brought the day of the wedding.

Receiving lines following the wedding are not permitted.   There will only be time for pictures before the next wedding or Mass begins.

Fake rose petals are permitted, but not real ones.  They must be strewn in the aisle by 1 person only.  The throwing of petals by the guests or arranging petals on the aisle is not permitted.

The Cathedral is an alcohol-free zone.  If any alcohol is found on Cathedral property, those guests will be asked to leave, even if they are part of the wedding party. Due to the sacredness of the occasion, if either the Bride or the Groom is suspected of being under the influence of alcohol, the priest/deacon must cancel the wedding.

We are very proud of our beautiful Cathedral and are happy that you have chosen to celebrate receive the Sacrament of Marriage here. We appreciate your considerate and respectful treatment of this sacred place and ask that you keep in mind that this is God’s house.  We wish you much love and happiness with God’s abundant blessings on your marriage.

THE PREPARATION PROCESS

The following information will also be discussed during your first meeting with the priest/deacon, which will be scheduled after your wedding application has been received.

Church law requires that both of you must be free to marry, that is, neither one of you was married before. If either party was previously married (even civilly), and the former spouse is still living, you will need to obtain a declaration of nullity on the marriage from the Tribunal of the Diocese, before beginning marriage preparation. Please contact Justin if you need information about the nullity process, at 407-422-2005 x 101.

You will need to provide a recent baptismal certificate (i.e., one issued in the previous six months).  This certificate should also include dates and places where your First Communion and Confirmation took place.

If one of the parties is not Catholic, then a dispensation is needed. The priest/deacon helping you with your preparation will request this for you.  If the person is a baptized member of another Christian Church, we will need a copy of their baptismal record.  If there are difficulties in obtaining the certificate, the priest/deacon will discuss what needs to be done.

You will need two (2) notarized statements for both the bride and groom from witnesses attesting to your freedom to marry (Form B). These witnesses may be anyone who knows you sufficiently well to state that you are free to marry – we would suggest parents or close relatives.  We will give you the necessary forms for this.

You will participate in one of our marriage preparation courses, along with other engaged couples. This is a great time to learn more about the Sacrament of Matrimony, how to have a successful marriage, and to also meet other engaged couples! We will share the session dates with you once you send in your wedding application.

You will also complete a FOCCUS inventory, a survey designed to pinpoint important areas of discussion for an engaged couple, such as faith, raising children, family, and finances.  It is not a compatibility test, but a tool to assist couples with discussing important topics, and learn from a mentor couple on how to be successful in these areas during their marriage.  Every couple will be assigned to a married couple from the parish whose ministry it is to assist them in discussing the FOCCUS inventory results.

The first step is to simply send in your application form, which can be found in the top-right section of this page. We look forward to journeying with you towards the Sacrament of Matrimony! God Bless!