The couple has several meetings with the selected pastoral staff member. The discussions include the completion of the prenuptial questionnaire and the results of the online FOCCUS (Facilitating Open Couple Communication Understanding Study), a self-diagnostic inventory designed to help couples learn more about themselves and their unique relationship. Cost for the online FOCCUS inventory is $15 (payable when the first person logs on to take the inventory). The inventory will be set up by the pastoral staff member during one of your meetings.
During Phase I, Catholics must request a recently dated baptismal certificate (with notations) from the parish where they were baptized. Individuals who are baptized but who are not Catholics must request a recently dated copy of their baptismal record. While recommended for Catholics planning to marry, Confirmation is not required in most U.S. dioceses. It is required, however, in many other countries.
The couple is required to participate in either the following:
- UCC Marriage Preparation Workshop - conducted once each semester over a Friday evening and all day Saturday. Significant topics relevant to marriage are presented with one-on-one couple conversation time. Meals and a closing Mass are included. Cost is $100 for UCC/UT Austin-related couples and $125 for all others. To register for the workshop, click here.
- Together in God's Love- a Diocese of Austin pre-marriage weekend retreat held at the Cedarbrake Catholic Retreat Center in Belton or a four-evening class series conducted at the Diocesan Pastoral Center in Austin. Schedules, cost and details for these programs are available from Fernanda Jaimes in the Diocese of Austin Family Life Office, (512) 949-2495.
- Catholic Engaged Encounter Weekend – these weekends are held around the country in various dioceses, please check http://www.engagedencounter.org/ for dates and locations.
After the wedding date and church have been selected and scheduled, the couple will meet with the priest or deacon who will preside at the wedding ceremony and witness their exchange of vows. At these meetings all the plans and details of the rehearsal and the wedding should be discussed. The wedding coordinator (if one will be utilized) should be involved in these details.
- A $100 donation (payable to the University Catholic Center) is requested to defray the expense of marriage preparation (for printed materials, etc.).
- If the wedding is to take place at the UCC the requested donation, whether the preparation takes place at the Catholic Center is: $750.
- The suggested donation for the priest or deacon celebrating the wedding is $100-$200.
- For weddings at the UCC, we are not able to provide parking. Guests may pay to park in the Central Parking spots for $3/hour or you may pay to reserve the entire parking lot by speaking to the priest who is working with you.
All ceremony plans must be approved by a staff member at the University Catholic Center. Some general guidelines follow:
- Photography, both still and video, are allowed, but photographers are asked to be respectful of the ceremony and not position themselves in a way that would be either distracting to the participants, guests or disrespectful to the church itself.
- We do not allow flower petals to be thrown or an aisle runner to be used.
- A unity candle or additional candles, if used, for the ceremony must be no-drip, have a candle follower or have plastic sheeting under them. No additional candles can be placed on the church's liturgical furniture (the altar or lectern/ambo).
- Violin, cello, and other orchestral pieces are perfectly acceptable. Harps and brass quintets are also acceptable. The music performed must be approved. For more information, contact Brad Emerson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Effective February 2017 (in accordance with the Diocese of Austin Supplementary Norms promulgated February 2, 2009).