Congratulations on your engagement and decision to enter into Catholic marriage! Our Lady of Mercy Parish will help you in your preparation to ensure that you make this serious and sacred step in your life a holy and happy one. Spiritual preparation is a key part of this special time. Frequent participation in the sacraments during this time is important, particularly weekly Mass attendance. It is also strongly recommended that you bring yourselves to the Sacrament of Reconciliation during this time of preparation. The engagement period can be particularly stressful at times, and the graces bestowed on you through Reconciliation and weekly Mass will be a great source of strength to help keep you focused and at peace. This spiritual direction will foster great growth and maturity for both partners.

The bride and/or groom should be registered members of our parish. A bride or groom who has moved away but whose family remains registered and supportive of the parish will be given due consideration.

Getting started

The day and time of the wedding must be arranged in person by the prospective bride and groom themselves as soon as they feel called to marry. No arrangement can be made by phone or parents. All arrangements should be made 12 months prior to the wedding date and done prior to scheduling the reception.

This first meeting with one of the parish priests must be scheduled by calling the Parish Office at 401.884.4968.

All couples must also participate in the Marriage Preparation and Enrichment program offered by the Diocese of Providence. All other steps will be presented during your appointment with the pastor

What does the Catholic Church teach about marriage?

St. Paul said: “Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the Church. . . . This is a great mystery, and I mean in reference to Christ and the Church” (Eph 5:25, 32).

“The matrimonial covenant, by which a man and a woman establish between themselves a partnership of the whole of life, is by its nature ordered toward the good of the spouses and the procreation and education of offspring; this covenant between baptized persons has been raised by Christ the Lord to the dignity of a sacrament.” (CCC 1601)


Sacred Scripture begins with the creation of man and woman in the image and likeness of God and concludes with a vision of “the wedding-feast of the Lamb.” Scripture speaks throughout of marriage and its “mystery,” its institution and the meaning God has given it, its origin and its end, its various realizations throughout the history of salvation, the difficulties arising from sin and its renewal “in the Lord” in the New Covenant of Christ and the Church. (CCC 1602)

“The intimate community of life and love which constitutes the married state has been established by the Creator and endowed by him with its own proper laws. . . . God himself is the author of marriage. The vocation to marriage is written in the very nature of man and woman as they came from the hand of the Creator. Marriage is not a purely human institution despite the many variations it may have undergone through the centuries in different cultures, social structures, and spiritual attitudes. These differences should not cause us to forget its common and permanent characteristics. Although the dignity of this institution is not transparent everywhere with the same clarity, some sense of the greatness of the matrimonial union exists in all cultures. “The well-being of the individual person and of both human and Christian society is closely bound up with the healthy state of conjugal and family life.” (CCC 1603)