Yesterday, the Husband and I celebrated our 6th wedding anniversary. Something I always think about this time of year is what we had to go through just to get married. It was a real whirlwind. When we got engaged, we did what most couples do. We decided on the basics, and booked a church, a reception location, and we asked the Husband’s lifelong parish priest if he would preside over our marriage. We were thrilled when he said ‘yes’. After clearing it with the church, we started picking out our readings, the music and everything else.
Imagine our surprise when we got a call six weeks before our wedding saying our priest had fallen sick and could no longer commit to celebrating our nuptial mass. After the initial shock, we reached out to the church, our pre-cana priest and our friends and family. The priests for the church were already booked, and our pre-cana priest had commitments preventing him from traveling to our wedding. Thankfully, a friend of the family had a son who was a priest. There was one slight challenge…he could only celebrate Mass in the Latin (Tridentine) right*. Being born well after Vatican II, we had never been to such a Mass, and had no clue what to expect.
|One of the many times we were kneeling during the ceremony|
It was interesting to say the least. We quickly met with the priest, who agreed to marry us. We worked with the church to get the proper dispensations to have a Tridentine ceremony (back then, you had to get the bishop to approve the historical rite. It is my understanding that Pope Benedict XIV has lifted this requirement).
Here’s a very short explanation of just how much changed in those last few weeks before we were married:
- Modern Masses have the marriage vows immediately after the Homily/Sermon. In a Tridentine Mass, the vows are at the very beginning
- In a Tridentine wedding, the couple doesn’t kiss after exchanging vows. (The priest told us we could, but we completely forgot! So our first kiss as a maried couple was actually during our recession from the church)
- Readings from the Bible are no longer conducted by the family members or friends of the couple
- Music selections are more restricted. Music is much more somber, with some items required in Latin.
- The priest celebrates much of the Mass with his back to the congregation.
- The Eucharist is only administered on the tongue.
These are only a few of the differences between the different services, but they were significant enough to really throw us for a loop. Even though it was not what we were expecting, I’m so happy we had such a traditional Mass. Overcoming that hurdle really brought us together as a couple in every way, including our faith.
|Our first kiss as husband and wife!|
If you’ve been married, what were some of the unexpected, last-minute changes you had to deal with when preparing for your wedding?