The Diocese of Wilmington’s Marriage Preparatory Policy and Guidelines require that contact with the parish priest or deacon be made one year before the date of the proposed marriage, and include the following steps:
•. Meetings with a parish priest or deacon to start formal preparation, determine readiness to marry and explore the religious dimension of married life.
• Attending educational programs (Pre-Cana, Engaged Encounter, Remarriage Program, Sponsor Couple Program) to provide information, skill building, share insights of experienced married couples. (See list of programs next page.)
• Small group meetings with engaged couples at parish level to concentrate on specific areas of married life. Preparation for Sunday liturgy at home parishes. Opportunity to treat any unusual circumstances, problems, challenges which marriage might bring.
The requirements of marriage preparation applies to all couples. In individual cases, there may be personal and pastoral reasons for adapting the three-step preparation process, but as with the previous policy exceptions, will not be made lightly and only according to the merits of the case.