“Aware that the well-being of society is intimately tied to the good of the family, the church perceives her mission of proclaiming to all people the plan of God for marriage and the family” Familiaris Consortio, 3
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Within the Diocese of Raleigh, there are basic guidelines for the process of marriage preparation. Pastors will work with the engaged couple to determine the best form of preparation within these guidelines. Before taking steps to complete the marriage preparation process, engaged couples must seek the guidance and approval of the pastor responsible for their marriage preparation.
- Preparation starts when the engaged couple meets with the priest (or delegate) initially to determine if they are fully able to consent to a covenantal marriage. This is known as the “discernment stage.” The priest will go over the marriage preparation process, including the diocesan workshop and/or a parish-based couple program.
- After the “discernment stage,” the immediate preparation (also known as “assessment stage”) to the marriage will follow. It is done with the pastor (or deacon) and includes the couple inventory.