Planning

I have a bit of advice for everyone. If you need to schedule anything in conjunction with the Church please, please, speak to your parish first. This is especially true when you're planning a wedding or a baptism. You may find out that the Church has some requirements that you must meet prior to scheduling the event.

It is not uncommon to find an angry bride when she discovers that there's a six month period of preparation required by the Church in most Diocese prior to getting married. It isn't fun telling the couple that they will need to move the date even though the announcements have already been mailed out. It is also difficult on everyone when the person responsible for preparing the family and proposed godparents for a baptism has to tell them that one or both proposed godparents aren't qualified. It is always an a awkward conversation when you have to inform your sister that she can't be a godparent because she is in an irregular marriage after you have already asked her.

The rites of the Church are not ceremonies that we should enter into without consideration. They effect us in a substantial way. They are the most significant moments in our life. Yet, we treat them as mere accessories – nice but not essential. They become occasions of friend and family networking instead of encounters with the living God. We must need have a greater sense of care when it comes to our liturgical life, our sacramental life. So please, when you make a todo list for these sort of events place "contacting the parish" at the top of the list. Everyone will thank you for it. If they don't, they should.