Church of St. Anthony

170 Meeker Avenue,  Watkins, MN 55389

 Phone: 320-764-2755

"...And the two will become one flesh. So they are no longer two, but one flesh."

Mark 10:8


Listed are some common questions regarding marriage:


Q: Do I have to be a registered member of the parish to have a wedding at St. Anthony of Watkins?
A: Normally the answer is yes.  If you are registered elsewhere because of work or living arrangements, written permission from your registered parish will be required at the beginning of the Marriage Preparation Process.


Q: How do I arrange for a Wedding Date?
A: Normally the process is simple! Presuming no one has been married before, a phone call to 
set up the first appointment with the pastor to begin the preparation work and reserve a date for the wedding.

Most weddings in this church are on a Saturday between 1 PM and 2 PM. Some weddings take place late in the afternoon on Friday. If either the bride or groom were baptized in a parish other than St. Anthony of Watkins, a current copy must be obtained.


Q: If one of us has been married before, what do I do?
A: Arrange a one-on-one conversation with the pastor. If the first marriage is a valid marriage in the eyes of the Catholic Church, a decree of annulment must be obtained before another wedding date can be set.  The annulment process will take between 12 – 16 months. 


Q: What is included in the marriage preparation process?
A: Through several meetings with the pastor, a relationship is established that assists the couple in realizing the spiritual significance of the Sacrament of Marriage. The Preparation process includes filling out all marriage papers, taking the Pre-Marital Inventory, meetings to discuss the Inventory and a meeting to discuss the wedding ceremony. A weekend Seminar is also necessary. The pastor’s position is to help make them see the sacredness of their life-choice.


Q: When should I purchase the state wedding license?
A: Wedding licenses can be purchased at any county court house. Both the bride and groom should be present. Do not make this purchase until the priest give you a certificate granting you a major deduction on this purchase.


Q: Can I have a priest relative or priest friend celebrate my wedding?
A: Yes. This will need to be discussed with the pastor prior to approval. 


Q: What kind of music can I use at my wedding?
A: Normally respectful music is used. A discussion with your musicians and the pastor can easily solve this question. 


Q: Who should I get to play the music at my wedding?
A: The parish can offer suggestions.


Q:  Are there any special rules regarding the church for the wedding?
A: Our rules are all common sense regulations:
[1] White runners are forbidden by our insurance company.
[2] Attachments to the pews must be void of glue.
[3] Flower petals cannot be thrown on the floor – stains the carpet
[4] Flash cameras are not allowed.
[5] Only Official Photographers can use the choir loft.
[6] All group photos should be taken before the wedding.
[7] The wedding party can have drink and light food in the social hall, but not in the church proper.


Q: What does it cost to have a wedding at St. Anthony?
A: The church pays for the Pre-Marital Inventory and other paperwork. Plus the lights and ambiance for the wedding pictures. The couple must pay the fee for the required diocesan marriage preparation weekend program. There is a minimum fee of $100 to the parish and $100 to the pastor, which can be paid on the wedding day. Some parishes charge $1,200. This parish hopes to break even and not cause the wedding couple an unfair burden.   


Congratulations! We are excited that you are asking for a sacramental marriage in the Catholic Church. The grace of the sacrament of marriage helps two people to live lovingly together in their pursuit of God.  Marriage is a sign to the world of the invisible God who bears fruit in the lives of two people.  We look forward to helping you accept the God-given teaching on marriage, so as to live out a marriage of holiness and happiness.

Marriage Preparation 

When couples want to marry in the Catholic Church, we offer them sacramental preparation that incorporates the wisdom of Christian teaching and the reality of God’s grace. 


1) Contact the parish office as early as possible to make a pre-marital meeting appointment. 

2) Live a sacramental life prior to marriage (weekly Eucharist, regular confession) built on a foundation of daily prayer (at least fifteen minutes each day).

After the first meeting

1) Make an appointment for a second meeting.

2) If required, bring your baptismal certificates to the second meeting.

6 months before the ceremony

1) Meet for the second time.

2) Register for a Weekend Marriage Course through the diocesan office (St. CloudNew Ulm). This course should be completed as soon as possible.

3) Complete the Fully Engaged questionnaire you receive via e-mail.

4) Read and complete the Fully Engaged couple's workbooks you received at the second meeting.

5) Begin meeting with your sponsor couple. The priest will assign a sponsor couple to work with the engaged couple. The sponsor couple helps prepare couples for marriage and nurture conversation about Catholic identity and the sacramental nature of marriage.

5 months before the ceremony:

1) Find a musician and use the guidelines to select music.

2) Discern 3 possible choices for each reading.

4 months before the ceremony:

3 months before the ceremony

1) Complete the Wedding Planning Sheet

2) Memorize your marriage vows and exchange of rings

3) Make an appointment for a third meeting

2 months before the ceremony

1) Complete the Liturgy of the Word Sheet.

1 month before the ceremony

1) Meet for the third time.
2) Bring a completed Wedding Planning SheetMarriage Preparation Course Completion Certificate, and Liturgy of the Word Sheet.
3) Go to the courthouse and apply for a Marriage License (at least one week prior to the ceremony)