Arlington parishioners marrying in another diocese

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How do I know if I’m a resident of the Diocese of Arlington?

Go to our Diocesan Parish Locator and enter the zip code of your home address. You are the subject of the diocese in which you live, and not necessarily the one in which you attend church. Be sure to check what diocese you belong to, especially if you are close to the diocesan borders.

What do I need to have in order before the wedding?

As you prepare for marriage with your pastor, he will put together a marriage file with you. This will include a pre-nuptial investigation for the bride and the groom, sacramental records, four sworn and notarized affidavits (two for the bride, two for the groom) establishing the parties’ freedom to marry, a certificate of completion for a marriage preparation course, and a completed FOCCUS survey

What do we do with the marriage file once it’s complete?

Your pastor will send it here, to the Office of Canonical Affairs, where it will be reviewed. Once it is confirmed that everything is in order, it will receive a visum est (assent) and be forwarded to the Chancery in the diocese where you are to be married, with a letter granting permission for the marriage to take place in the diocese. The Chancery there will check through the file, attach a nihil obstat (no objection), and send it to the parish where the marriage will take place.

What is the time-frame for sending the paperwork in to the Office of Canonical Affairs?

Please get your paperwork together and send it in to the Office of Canonical Affairs not less than six weeks before the wedding date if your wedding is domestic, and not less than eight weeks if your wedding is international.  This allows enough time for us to review the information, send it to the diocese in which the marriage is to take place, and for that diocese to review the file and send it to the parish of the wedding. 

Where can I find out about the Diocese of Arlington’s marriage preparation policy?

The Office of Family Life has full details. Please be aware that you will need to start the marriage preparation process at least six months before the wedding.