Goffine’s Devout Instructions – Sacrament of Matrimony

Matrimony is a sacrament in which a single man and a single woman are united in marriage, and receive grace from God to fulfil the duties of their state faithfully until death. This sacrament imposes on the married couple the duty to live together in peace and love and conjugal fidelity, to bring up as Christians the children God may send them, and cheerfully share one another’s joys and sorrows. The free consent of both parties to the sacrament is absolutely essential.

How is the Sacrament of Matrimony received?

The bridal pair declare before their pastor and two witnesses that they take one another as husband and wife, whereupon the priest blesses their union. A priest other than the pastor can officiate at this sacrament only when he has the permission of the pastor or bishop.

What is the ceremonial of this sacrament?

  1. The bridal pair emphasize their consent by giving each other their right hand.
  2. The priest with a blessing confirms their union in these words: “I join you in matrimony in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.” In some places the priest winds the stole about the hands of the newly-married couple as a sign that this confirmation and ratification is done in God’s name.
  3. He blesses the wedding ring, which is a symbol of their indissoluble union, and the love and fidelity of the married pair.
  4. The bridal pair then receive the special and solemn matrimonial blessing. This is given during the bridal Mass, immediately after the Paternoster. When the bride is a widow, or when the marriage takes place at a prohibited time, this special blessing is not given, since a second marriage does not truly represent the union of Christ with the Church.
Goffine’s Devout Instructions