We’ve all seen those wonderful commercials or movies that show the beautiful ocean background as the couple walks down the “aisle” on their wedding day. Destination weddings are promoted (naturally) by many resorts, hotels, airlines, etc. Well, that mental image is beautiful but there are definitely some restrictions for Catholics. See our newer blog post on Catholic weddings at the beach for more details.
It’s not that the Church does not want you to have a beautiful wedding but because the Catholic view of the wedding is that it is a sacrament and should take place on consecrated ground. I noticed that some non-Catholics who attended our son’s wedding remarked that they wished the bride and groom faced each other during the ceremony rather than kneeling and facing the altar. Naturally everything that the secular world has told everyone is that “it is all about the me”. Not so….they miss the important fact that the center of attention is not the bride and groom, but Jesus Christ. Sadly, there are quite a few Catholics in the same boat.
Another oft-requested venue is getting married on a cruise. Why anyone would want to do so is beyond me……having your wedding party and family along on your honeymoon does not sound like a great way to start off married life. However, if you really want to get married on a cruise, then you need to make some serious plans. In the first place, as mentioned above, you cannot get married on the ship because it is not consecrated ground. You would need to arrange for a church at a port along the way and that is not an easy thing. It’s hard enough planning a wedding in your own home town much less some city a few hundred—or thousand–miles away. And, if for some reason, there is a last-minute change in the itinerary you could end up missing your own wedding!