Is there a difference between civil marriage and sacramental marriage conducted in the Roman Catholic Church?

Yes. Unlike a civil ceremony, sacramental marriage invites and fully recognizes God's presence in the union. This presence helps the partners grow in love with each other and in the love of God.

Why is Matrimony a sacrament?

There are a number of reasons. First, the union is based in Scripture. There union is found throughout the Old and New Testaments. The references begin at the creation, when man and woman were created to be together (Genesis 1:26-27). At the end of the New Testament, we have the image of the Feast of the Lamb at the end (Revelation 19:7-9)

Is a sacramental marriage permanent?

Yes. In modern times, maintaining a union that is permanent can be challenging. The many broken marriages in our society attest to this. However, permanence is a a key component in sacramental marriage. The invitation and recognition of God's presence works to maintain the union. With this and the commitment of the couple conflicts and struggles may be worked out more readily.

How should couples prepare for the sacrament of matrimony?

The spiritual, relational, and practical considerations of marriage require clear thought and planning. It is wise to seek counsel form a priest or other minister well in advance of ceremony. This helps the couple to prepare for many of the questions and issues that will arise when they are married. Pre-Cana and other pre-marital classes and workshops may be available to help explore the fullness that married life offers.

What requirements must a couple meet to be wed in the Church?

First, it is necessary that there are no encumbrances for either party. There must be a valid marriage license. A priest must be available to perform the ceremony. In most cases, a pre-marital class is required. This ensures that the couple understands the commitment involved and has taken time to prepare for the adjustment to married life.

What are the objectives, goals, ends of sacramental marriage?

The objective is to establish a loving and permanent partnership between the spouses. Each person accepts the other in their entirety. The couple lives together, establishes family, and raises and educates their children.

How are sex and marriage related to the call to holiness in Christian life?

In our culture, sexual attitudes and practices have undergone enormous changes in recent decades. But while a true understanding of human sexuality evolves, certain facts remain. Sexual relations are correctly based in the the marital union of two persons. This fully committed relationship forms the basis of parenting, which elevates the couples joy to a higher level. When sexual unions are formed in other ways, the results are familiar. Broken homes, failed relationships and abandonment are the end results.

What are some requirements of couples in sacramental marriage?

There are several, and a few will be touched upon here. Faithfulness to each other in sexual relations. In this, the union of the flesh leads to a unity of sprit, of purpose, and of will. Openness to fertility in a way which promotes the dignity of the human persons. Commitment to the permanent nature of sacramental marriage. Mutual love of one another, and sacrifice for each other. The example of Christ giving His life for the Church is the model of love for marriage (Ephesians Ch 5). Education of children, who should be raised with an understanding of the faith and a love of God.

Is there a recipe for happy marriage?

There a many components which create a harmonious and happy married life. Sharing prayer and sacramental graces enable couples to persevere amid the struggles of modern life. A willingness to forgive, at times repeatedly. It is written, " Be angry but do not sin, do not let the sun set on your anger." These words, written to everyday Christians, are especially pertinent to married couples. Finally, an understanding that the joys of married life will last a lifetime. When viewed this way, petty concerns of the day are very small compared to the love and joy that will last a lifetime.