|The Sacrament of Matrimony|
Most people are called to the married life rather than to the religious life or to life as a single person. Through the Sacrament of Matrimony, God gives special graces to help married couples with life's difficulties, especially to help them raise their children as loving followers of Christ.
Marriage always involves three parties: the bride, the groom, and God. When two Christians receive the Sacrament of Matrimony, God is with them, witnessing and blessing their marriage covenant. For Catholics, God does this through the priest or deacon who presides at the wedding as the Church's witness.
A consummated sacramental marriage is permanent; only death can break it (Mark 10:1-12, Romans 7:2-3, 1 Corinthians 7:10-11). This holy union is a living symbol of the unbreakable relationship between Christ and his Church (Ephesians 5:21-33).
At St. Thomas the Apostle Church, couples planning to marry are encouraged to make arrangements at least six months prior to the wedding date. Contact the Parish Secretary at 815-455-5400 ext. 400.
*This text was taken from "Pillar of Fire, Pillar of Truth" by Catholic Answers. More information about matrimony can be found in the Catechism of the Catholic Church (1601-1666) or at www.catholic.com