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Catholic Marriage in Mexico- Requirements

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A Catholic wedding in Mexico is easy to arrange and is recognized as an official Catholic wedding when all the official documentation and requirements have been fulfilled. Catholics can be married in local Mexican parish churches.

 

The marriage couple must complete the Pre-Cana classes, the required pre-marriage courses, and the Pre-Cana certificate is required prior to the wedding.All official documents required for a Catholic wedding must be received 30 days prior to your ceremony. Rarely are their exceptions to this 30 day rule.

 

Requirements for Couples from Outside the Diocese

 

If you have not already done so, please contact your parish priest/deacon regarding marriage preparation. He is responsible for your marriage preparation and instruction.

Your parish priest will assist you with obtaining the necessary documents, permissions and dispensations (if needed).

 

He is responsible for forwarding the following information and documents to the chancellor of your diocese for review:

a letter of recommendation stating that:

•you have been prepared according to the marriage preparation guidelines of your diocese;

•permission has been granted for the marriage to be celebrated in Mexico (Canon 1115);

•a current original copy of the Baptismal certificate of the Catholic party.

•a current original copy of the Confirmation certificate of the Catholic party.

•an Affidavit of Freedom to Marry for each party signed by a competent person (e.g. parent, relative or close friend) and the signature witnessed by a pastor/priest/cleric of the person vouching for your freedom to marry.

•the completed Pre-nuptial Investigation form used in your diocese.

•Color photos of the Bride and Groom

•copy of the Birth certificate of each

 

 

if applicable:

•a dispensation for disparity of worship

•a dispensation from canonical form

•permission for Mixed Religion

•decree of nullity of a former marriage(If either party was previously married, a declaration of nullity for a lack of form or formal annulment must be obtained.)

 

When all the required information is received by the Diocese a Nihil Obstat will be granted and sent to the priest/deacon officiating at your wedding in Mexico along with all pertinent documentation.

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Its really not that bad. We had to go through this, and I can honestly say it was one of the most easiest things I had to do for the wedding so far. Just meet with your priest and its bascially his job to get you all prepared.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adamsgrrl View Post
Its really not that bad. We had to go through this, and I can honestly say it was one of the most easiest things I had to do for the wedding so far. Just meet with your priest and its bascially his job to get you all prepared.
I agree...it's really not nearly as bad as it sounds. Also, we had to get most of that stuff, but not quite all. For example, I don't think we need the color photos. The church in Cancun told us that all we need to send is what our church in NY would otherwise require (which is still most of that stuff...baptismal certificates, pre cana certificates, etc.) But our priest in NYC is basically guiding us through the whole thing.

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I know this is an old thread... but i recently got married in a Riviera Maya Catholic Church and received a marriage certificate (in spanish). First question- how do i get it translated to English and 2) Is it considered a legal wedding in the U.S.? I'm running into problems changing my name and we never had to sign anything for a marriage license. We did all the Catholic things in the U.S. beforehand and got our certificate after the ceremony, I just feel like we should have more docuements form Mexico? Help, did anyone else go through this??

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A religious ceremony is not a "legal" marriage in Mexico (that's why you didn't have to get a marriage license). The tradition in Mexico is to have a civil ceremony performed by a judge immediately prior to the religious ceremony performed by the priest. The legal/civil marriage requires blood work, 4 witnesses, etc. So unless you did that part in Mexico as well, you probably do not have a marriage certificate that is recognized by anyone other than the Catholic Church. If you don't have a "legal" marriage in Mexico, you won't have one in the U.S. either.

 

For destination weddings, some people do both the religious and legal ceremonies in Mexico, or some (including myself) just have a civil/legal wedding in the U.S. before or after. I went to city hall in New York and then did the Catholic ceremony in Mexico. The Catholic Church in the U.S. will recognize the wedding certificate you got from your Catholic ceremony, but I don't believe your state will. So you probably need to apply for a marriage license and have a civil wedding in the U.S. if you don't have a legal marriage certificate from Mexico.

 

There's also a lot of stuff written about this online if you want more info, we did a lot of research leading up to the wedding. At the end of the day, I think you are better off and life is easier with a U.S. marriage certificate anyway...if you have a Mexican certificate I think you have to pay translator fees, etc.

 

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mjm160 View Post
I know this is an old thread... but i recently got married in a Riviera Maya Catholic Church and received a marriage certificate (in spanish). First question- how do i get it translated to English and 2) Is it considered a legal wedding in the U.S.? I'm running into problems changing my name and we never had to sign anything for a marriage license. We did all the Catholic things in the U.S. beforehand and got our certificate after the ceremony, I just feel like we should have more docuements form Mexico? Help, did anyone else go through this??

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Kathleen,

thank you so much for the clarification! We thought that was the case, but I wanted to hear from someone else who actually lived through it. We are going to apply for a PA marriage license. Our WC wasn't very helpful in explaning the logistics to us. We should've researched it more before we got married!

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Hello there mkdela. I'm getting married in March 2009 at Iberostar del Mar. So, if I get legally married in the states and have the catholic religious ceremony in the resort's chapel will my marriage be recognized in the eyes of the catholic church?

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yes bernie, your marriage will be valid in the eyes of the church. my DH and i got legally married here in chicago a few weeks ago and we are having our religious wedding in MX. you just have to make sure you have all the proper documents for the church and you're all good.

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thanks so much!!! I'm actually meeting with the parish priest today. What type of questions would I have to ask him? BTW I'm also from chicago-did the diocese give you a hard time

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