Congratulations on your engagement! We rejoice with you and pledge you our support and prayers. As Catholics, we believe the Sacrament of Marriage is the union of a baptized man and woman who freely enter into a covenant of love with each other in Christ for the purpose of sustaining a community of life and love and to accept children lovingly from God, bringing them up in the faith by word and example.

Marriage is a sacred reality. In the midst of your preparations, we ask you to keep in mind the sacred and solemn nature of this sacrament. In marriage we celebrate a vocation that shows God’s love present in our world.

By your marriage in Church, you are making a very public statement of your own faith and your fidelity to each other and to Christ, a lifelong commitment within the community of the Church. Therefore, it is expected that you are practicing your faith at least by being a regular participant at Sunday Mass.

Please take the time before your marriage to prepare yourselves spiritually, for to sustain this sacrament it is necessary to have a relationship with Christ and His Body, the Church. Please review the information below and contact Kelley in the Parish Office at 508.775.5744 x 113 at your convenience to schedule a date.

How do we reserve a date and when can we marry?

The guidelines for the Diocese of Fall River state that those wishing to marry should consult the parish priest at least 8 months before the anticipated marriage date. This needs to be done prior to scheduling a reception hall.
 

Weddings can be scheduled as follows:

Monday - Friday: A time may be arranged as available.

Saturday: 11AM, 1:30PM

Sunday: Weddings are held at 1PM or 3PM. Please note Sunday weddings are by permission of the Pastor, and MUST be a Mass, with NO exceptions. 

A $50. deposit is required to reserve the church.

If both the bride and groom are Catholic, they will be married within the context of Mass. Marriages of Catholics with someone of another faith may be celebrated within Mass or with just a Ceremony with the Liturgy of the Word, EXCEPT Sunday, which must be a Mass. The pastor has the option of assigning a Deacon if the wedding will be a Ceremony.

 

Initial Meeting
After you set your wedding date, please arrange to have your baptism and confirmation records sent to the OLV Parish Office (all meetings and business will be conducted through the OLV Office 230 South Main Street, Centerville, MA 02632). These need to be dated within a year of the wedding and we need a paper copy rather than emailed copy (see below).

 

After we have the certificates we will be in touch to schedule your initial meeting. At that time you will complete paperwork with a priest, and you will be given information about the FOCCUS© Pre-Marriage Inventory. This is a comprehensive, user-friendly tool designed to help engaged couples appreciate their unique relationship, learn more about themselves, and discuss topics important to their lifelong marriage.

 

After you complete this (virtually) the results will be scored and sent to the Fr. Greg or the priest who you will be completing your paperwork with. You'll then have another meeting to discuss (if you are at a distance this can be done via Zoom or Facetime).

 

You'll also be given more information about music, decorations, etc and given the Together for Life booklet to plan your wedding. This includes a Selection Form which will includes all the details of your wedding day. This should be sent to Kelley 4 weeks before the wedding (this can be emailed). We will send this to your celebrant, as well as your parish wedding coordination (please see below).

Must we participate in Pre-Cana?
The Diocese of Fall River requires couples to attend a Marriage Preparation program as part of their preparation for marriage. Currently this is being held online. Please see the Diocese of Fall River website to enroll. You should attend the program soon after setting your wedding date. If you reside outside the area, you may attend a marriage preparation program in the area in which you live. Once completed, please send a copy of the Certificate. This can be emailed.


What records do I need?
You will need to supply to the Parish Office a newly issued record of your Baptism (dated within 12 months of the wedding date) and a record of your Confirmation (if applicable). Please contact the church of your Baptism and Confirmation. They will most likely send those records directly rather than giving them to the couple. Please have them sent to the following address and INCLUDE YOUR DATE OF WEDDING: Our Lady of Victory, 230 South Main Street, Centerville, MA 02632.

May we plan our nuptial celebration?
Yes! You will be given a booklet to assist you in planning the ceremony with the priest of deacon. There is a form in the book for you to indicate your choices of prayers and readings as well as other options. You are encouraged to have family members or friends assist in the reading of scripture at the wedding. The priest working with you and your future spouse, as well as the wedding coordinator, will assist you with these plans.

Priest Friends or Relatives
We are happy to allow a relative or a close friend who is a priest or deacon to witness your marriage. If one party is not Catholic, you're free to invite a minister to be present and involved in the ceremony. Please consult Kelley prior to the invitation.

 

Priests residing outside of Massachusetts must seek permission from the Office of the Secretary of State to legally perform the wedding in this state. THIS IS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF THE COUPLE AND VISITING PRIEST, and is VERY important to obtain.

For information regarding assistance in obtaining a Certificate of Authorization from the Massachusetts Secretary of the Commonwealth, please contact:

Division of Public Records
Secretary of the Commonwealth
One Ashburton Place, Room 1719
Boston, MA 02108
617.727.2836
 

If you are having your paperwork prepared by your own priest, all information must be received at the Our Lady of Victory Parish Office at least 60 days before the wedding date. We will give you a list of the paperwork required. 

 

All clergy not assigned to the Diocese of Fall River will need to present a Letter of Good Standing to the pastor. This can be emailed to pastor@olvparish.org and should be done four weeks prior

Parish Wedding Coordinators
We have a wonderful ministry here that assists couples as they prepare for their wedding day. Once your coordinator receives your Selection Form, they will call you to go over the details. They will be with you at the rehearsal and the wedding and are an important part of your day!

Rehearsals
A date and time for the rehearsal can be set as soon as plans are finalized. The rehearsal will be conducted by the parish wedding coordinator. There are frequently several rehearsals scheduled for the same evening. It is essential that all parties be on time for the rehearsal. Anyone that has a part in the wedding should be there. 

Music
After setting the wedding date, you should also start making plans regarding music. Please contact our Music Director, Dorothy Lortie (508.771.1029, lortie@comcast.net) for all music concerns and questions. She will assist you with music selections as well as vocalists and instrumentalists. Fees for the musicians, like those of the florist and photographer, are the responsibility of the couple.

The Music Director is given a schedule of all weddings and will reserve the date for you. Please contact her at least three months prior to the wedding to set up a date to meet with her to choose the music you would like for your wedding. If you want to have additional musicians, or there are any other requests for soloists, she will help to coordinate this.

Flowers and Decorations
It is the usual custom for the wedding couple to provide the flowers for the altar. You may choose to leave the arrangements at the church after the wedding as a gift to the parish.

If you plan to attach flowers or bows to the pews, please use wire, clips or elastic cords and not adhesives. Nails or hangers are not to be used on any walls in the Church. Please notify the florist that arrangements for the sanctuary should not impede the flow of the liturgy or block the view of the Presider from the Presider’s chair and the altar. If you would like a runner for the church aisle, please arrange this with your florist. 

 

Main Aisle Dimensions: Length: 73 feet, Width: 4 feet

Length from Streetside Curb to Church Door: 19 feet

Number of Pews  (each seats about 6 people): 40

The first 2 pews on each side are 2 feet shorter, and can each seat about 5 people.
 

Dimensions of Shelves on the High Altar Higher Shelf: 8%“ deep x 52“ long
Lower Shelf: 12“ deep x 33“ long

These are provided as an aid when ordering/designing aisle runners, pew decorations, and other accouterments for your wedding ceremony. These are provided as an aid; however it is still advisable that either you or your decorator make your own measurements.



Seating Capacity
The seating capacity at Our Lady of the Assumption is 330.

Photographers
The photographer should speak with the celebrant before the marriage ceremony. He/She is welcome to take pictures during the wedding as long as it doesn’t delay the start of the bridal procession, does not disrupt the marriage ceremony, or interfere with the recessional.

Videographers should be set up in one place and remain there for the entire wedding. We also request no bright lights be used in the process of videotaping.

Limousines
While it is perfectly permissible for limos to deliver the bride and her attendants to the church, limos should remain in place until departure. Alcoholic beverages (including champagne) may not be served on Church property.

Church Offering
We do not have a set offering for the Church, although usual offerings range around $500. We leave this to the discretion of the couple. This money goes directly to the parish for support and upkeep. It is customary to give the altar servers (2 when a Mass) a gratuity. All other fees (musicians, florist, photographers, etc.) are the responsibility of the couple.

Marriage License
The civil marriage license must be obtained within 60 days of the marriage.
You can apply at any Massachusetts city or town hall. Both parties must apply in person at the same time. There is a three-day waiting period before you can pick up the license. The original should be brought to the Office to be kept in your file. After the wedding, the priest will sign the license (the couple does not sign) and will return it to the Clerk's office. Remember, if you have a visiting priest from out of state, he MUST submit the Solemnization Certificate with the completed license.  


Miscellaneous
It is essential that all parties arrive so that the wedding can begin at the scheduled time.
If the procession is delayed more than 10 minutes, we reserve the right to perform a shortened wedding service.

A timely departure of the wedding party from the Church grounds (within 20 minutes of the ceremony) is appreciated as often there are other weddings or activities scheduled after your wedding.

Rice, flowers or birdseed should not be thrown inside or outside of the Church for environmental and safety reasons.

Cancellation

Should there be a change of plans, please be sure to notify the Parish Office as soon as possible.