Roman Catholic Wedding Ceremony


Our family is Roman Catholic.  It is not easy to be married “in the church,” – to have a “Roman Catholic Wedding Ceremony.”  There is more work involved than a protestant ceremony.  I can speak from experience, as Kenny and I were married first in the Presbyterian Church, (my church growing up), then we had a second wedding in the Catholic Church after I converted to Roman Catholicism.

I think if religion is important to both the bride and groom, it is not to everyone, it’s easier if a couple is untied.  Kenny and I made the decision before we married that we would first get married in my “hometown church,” then I would convert.  I didn’t realize, however, that it would take me TWO years to complete the process, and that it would require getting married all over again.  I don’t think any parish requires that today.  This was 30 years ago, remember.

Maggie and Rob, KK and Tyler are lucky.  All four are Roman Catholics.  They didn’t have to jump through the hoops that Kenny and I did.  There is a lengthy process, though.

In order to be married in the Catholic Church, either the bride or the groom must be a confirmed Catholic.  One can not become a confirmed Catholic unless he/she is baptized, attends 9 years of CCD – religious education, received his/her First Holy Communion, and First Reconciliation (you may think of this as “Confession”).  Then the candidate is eligible to attend either a one or two year course of “Confirmation Classes.”  Finally after all this, the candidate is accepted into the Church as a full member.

Now you want to receive the Sacrament of marriage?  One must be a registered member of a parish, or his/her parents are.  All sacraments, (listed above), must be documented.  Then the bride and groom must meet, on average, three times with a priest, and attend a “pre-cana” marriage workshop.  This is at least a five hour class.  The class addresses everything from children, to in-laws to finance.  A lot of work?  You bet.  But so is marriage.  The Catholic Church has struggled in the recent past, but I think this is one thing they’re doing right…


click on the link below to and check out my favorite pre-wedding prep product!  Bliss “Fat Girl Skinny” arm cream is miracle!


Arm Candy Arm Perfecting Cream with Massaging Applicator
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Pre-Wedding Exercise


Would you ‘DARE to BARE’ your arms at your daughter’s wedding?  I SWORE I never would.  Let’s face it…we MOTHERS of the bride do NOT look as we did as BRIDES…  Then came my search for my “Mother of the Bride” dress.

Well…I found what I thought was the perfect dress, and in my very favorite color.  Not only that, the color complemented the wedding colors, and my daughter Maggie, the bride, liked it.  Perfect, right?  Wrong.  It was SLEEVELESS.  It takes a lot of work to keep your arms toned as a ‘woman of a certain age’.  I really wasn’t up to countless hours in the gym just so I could wear a sleeveless dress.  But boy oh boy…did I love that dress…

So I did something very unlike me.  I bought the dress, costing more than my own wedding gown 31 years ago, and gambled.  I gambled that I would exercise and like how my arms looked in the dress.  But life got in the way, and I did very little – but guess what!…a quick plan I put together last minute worked!  Here’s what I did …

1)  I bought a set of hand weights, 5 pounds each.  I placed them in a spot where I walked by frequently during my day at home. Every time I passed the weights, I did a series of lifts with them to the count of 16.

2)  As the wedding day approached, I still wasn’t completely satisfied.  My 17 year old daughter said to me, “You know, Mom, there’s a firming cream that you can use on your arms that really works.”  First of all, what does a 17 year old know about the need for, and success of, a firming cream???  So I snorted, “Yeah, right, Tess.”

But desperate times call for desperate measures.  I bought the cream.  And really truly, it worked!  My arms WERE firmer and appeared to be more toned.  The trick is to rub it on twice daily, religiously, and start at least 2 weeks before your event.  ‘What is this miracle cream?’, you ask, “Fat Girl Slim Arm Candy,” by Bliss.  I know, I know, not the most complimentary name.  But hey.  I also rubbed it on the back of my hands, and noticed a difference there too.  Bliss has a whole line of firming and toning creams.  I can’t wait until I splurge on my next one.  It’s available on line, and at retails stores such as Sephora and Ulta.

Find below, a picture of me in “the dress,”  (arms bared!), escorted by the handsome “FOG” (Father of the Bride!).


Or… click on the amazon link below, and it will direct you right to the product.


Arm Candy Arm Perfecting Cream with Massaging Applicator

Patty Cloherty Photos


A Splash of Color for the Bride!



Color for the Bride?  Sooo…You’re not a fan of  white.  And as the bride, you want to add a splash color to your ensemble.  Not hard at all, and surprisingly, there are many options.  Take the bride in the top photo.  I’m not sure if I’d wear it, but she incorporates her “Something Blue” nicely with her veil.  I think maybe a paler blue would be a softer touch, by maybe she was going for a color contrast with her white gown.


What about a tulle slip to highlight your own personal sense of sass, and the color theme of your wedding?  I think the above photo is very fun.  Maybe shoes to match?  Granted, a ball gown type of wedding dress would be required to adequately pull this look off, but it’s sure cute.


A bride can always choose to brighten the ‘all white’ standard by using colored hair accents or jewelry.  The earrings below, added to the bride’s mostly white look, would really be a stand-out.  Of course, you don’t want the focal point to rest mainly with jewelry…


I love the shoes below.  They would be adorable at a church wedding if the bride and groom kneeled at the alter.  And it would take care of the “Something Blue” part of the old tradition.  My own mother had but one request at my wedding.  She asked, well DEMANDED! 🙂 that Kenny not write, “Help Me” or some such nonsense on the bottom of his shoes – to be seen by the congregation when we knelt at our wedding.



Whatever you choose, remember, there is no right or wrong…just what you like and want for your wedding – well your groom’s choices should be considered too…But he’s not quite as important as you are…


Looking for a good reference for gemstones?  The pocket guide by Renee Newman, above, is a good choice.  Just click on the link below.

Gem & Jewelry Pocket Guide: A traveler’s guide to buying diamonds, colored gems, pearls, gold and platinum jewelry



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Magical Wedding Dreams


I have a friend who started planning her wedding when she was eight years old.

The delightful photo below is NOT of her, however, – I just think it’s cute.  I know this little girl; she is grown up now, and as beautiful a woman as she was a cute child.  In this picture, she is dressed in a family  gown, standing on a table.


Actually, planning one’s wedding so far in advance isn’t such a bad idea.  Think of all the ideas you may run across as you dream of your magical day.  If you don’t note them, you’ll forget, or at least I would…  🙂


At the first wedding I attended following the birth of my first DAUGHTER, I began taking wedding notes. In those days, it was with a pen and paper.  These days, one can just jot ideas on your phone.  But back then…it was old school.   I noted things that worked, i.e., songs I liked, flattering mother of the bride dress styles, cute centerpiece ideas…And things that didn’t.  For example, receptions not starting immediately following the ceremony – where is one to go in the hour of limbo between the wedding and cocktail hour?  Or deciding to skip the slippery white isle runner for the wedding party to walk on.  Not only can it be a slipping hazard on tile, the white runner doesn’t provide a desirable background for the bride’s white train.


Not a bad idea to think about your dream ring in advance, either…trends change, and go in cycles.  But you know what is best for you.  Does your skin look better with yellow gold, or a silver tone?  Do you wear more of one than the other?  But remember…you may need to be flexible.  Your fiancé just may surprise you with HIS dream ring when he pops the question.  Time for compromise and graciousness…


Check out this FREE wedding planner for Kindle from amazon!  Just click on the link below to get it.

My Perfect Wedding Planner Free (Kindle Tablet Edition)



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