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We had a date, we had a reception site, now a church.

Nate and I were both raised Catholic, but if we're being completely honest, getting married in a church wasn't a huge priority on our part. I wanted to get married outside with all of the beautiful colored leaves around us. It had been a dream of mine since I was younger, unfortunately, that dream is not being recognized. I've come to terms (bitter terms, but terms none-the-less) with it though, what matters most is that I'm marrying my best friend.

Both of our families INSISTED we get married in a church, so a church it is. There is only one Catholic Church in Ligonier, Holy Trinity Parish. Lucky enough for us, it's beautiful and newly remodeled. The not so lucky part is the price… $500. Now I know that doesn't seem like a lot of money, but it's money that could have been going to our catering bill for our large guest list. 

So far, getting married in a catholic church has consisted of getting approval from my home church, hunting down our original birth certificates, many phone calls back and forth to verify that our date was available, an initial meeting with the Monseigneur (where he told us we were living in sin because we were living together), and 5 weeks of premarital counseling with a couple we had never met before (more on that later).

My experience so far has been exhausting and kind of frustrating. I'm hoping it's just the diocese the church is located in and not all Catholic Churches. I hope your church ceremony planning has been easier.

ceremony planning

You can find more about the church here if you're interested.

Until next time



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About Joscelyn

My name is Joscelyn, I'm 24 years old and live in the Pittsburgh, PA area. I work with children on the Autism Spectrum and am currently enrolled in grad school for special education. I'm recently engaged and planning my dream wedding, I can't wait to share it!

Connect with Joscelyn
  • Laura

    I’m so sorry for all the hassle! One of my best friends got married in a Catholic church and I think your experience is pretty run of the mill for how things are done. But it looks like a lovely church! I bet you’ll get some great pictures!

  • Tink

    What a hassle. I wonder since they are so adamant if they want to split the cost for the church. Sorry you are not getting your outdoor wedding. It is a pretty location though.

  • Tater

    I truly think it is a diocese thing. I recently got married in January in a Catholic Church and it only cost $100 and our meetings with the priest were great, we too lived together before we got married. Plus we only had to meet twice with our designated couple. My advice is take the good from it and make the most of your actual wedding day. I promise the pictures will be worth all the hassel.

  • I’ve found it really depends in the parish, and even the priest, when it comes to navigating the Catholic wedding waters.

  • Kelly

    The Catholic church Is a strict faith and requires you to marry in the church for it to be recognized by the church. I’m sorry you are frustrated but if you look at the positive and know that all extra stuff will pay off in the end because you will be happily married and your family will be at peace with the religious ceremony. If you intend to raise your children Catholic it will be important to you to receive te sacrament of marriage, which they probably addressed during counseling. Good luck honey! Hope it all turns put fabulous!

  • Susie

    I was married in the Catholic church in Tennessee, and we had to go through some loop holes, but nothing like you’ve gone through. First difference is that we didn’t have to pay a dime, but that’s b/c I was a member of the parish. But even if I wasn’t, I think it would have only been around $100. We did have to pay for the church’s coordinator and the soloist/musician, and we couldn’t have an outsider come in to take their place. The birth certificate hassle is expected. I think finding our baptismal certificates was harder! But don’t fret, once you get through this, it’ll all be worth it. I would consider asking both of y’all parents to chip in on the cost since they insisted on you getting married there.

  • I’m sorry things are a bit harder than you expected with the Catholic Church. We initially had some struggles, but all in all the process has gone as expected.

  • Joscelyn

    Thank you for all of the support and advice! It is appreciated and thank you for reading!! 🙂

    @erin @susie @kelly @[email protected] @tater @tink @laura

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