The Sacrament of Matrimony


Marriage Preparation

Congratulations on your engagement!

“This is a very exciting time, and we share the joy and the hope that you feel as an engaged couple. We wish to support you as much as we can as you prepare to join your lives together in Christ’s Church.

As part of your engagement, the Church requires marriage preparation so that: couples have a better understanding of marriage as both a sacrament and a vocation; to help you discern and deepen your commitment to each other in marriage; and to learn more about each other and yourselves before you get married. Marriage preparation is a great blessing, and numerous university studies have shown that couples who engage in marriage preparation have a significantly lower risk of divorce than couples who do not (e.g. Stanley, “Premarital Education,” 2006).

Remember that marriage preparation begins at your parish, so please contact your parish as soon as you get engaged to begin marriage preparation. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office for help.”


?Persons seeking to marry at Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary or  Our Lady of Fatima must be interviewed by the pastor or deacon before setting dates or booking reception halls. An interview is necessary to establish canonical freedom to marry.

A one-year sacramental preparation process begins when the engaged couple meets with the priest or deacon and culminates in the couple’s exchange of vows on their wedding day.

Call the office, 717-272-5674, to register for the sacramental preparation.

Matrimony in the Catholic Church

“The matrimonial covenant, by which a man and a woman establish between themselves a partnership of the whole of life, is by its nature ordered toward the good of the spouses and the procreation and education of offspring; this covenant between baptized persons has been raised by Christ the Lord to the dignity of a sacrament.”

(Catechism of the Catholic Church, 1601)

Father, we thank you for your tremendous gift of the Sacrament of Marriage. Help us to witness to its glory by a life of growing intimacy. Teach us the beauty of forgiveness so we may become more and more One in Heart, Mind and Body. Strengthen our dialogue and help us become living signs of your love. Make us grow more in love with the Church so we may renew the Body of Christ. Make us a sign of unity in the name of Jesus, our Lord and Brother. Amen.

Marriage, Divorce and Annulments

This 12 minute sermon by Pastor Robert Gillelan explains the Catholic teaching on the above. It’s excellent!