Your definitive guide to Catholic Weddings Requirements in Italy
Did you always dream of walking down the aisle in a sumptuous and splendidly adorned church? You can do that for your Destination Wedding in Italy too!
Here for you, the definitive guide with all the requirements for your Catholic wedding ceremony in Sorrento and the Amalfi Coast.
It is important for you to know that to contract religious marriage in Italy (valid in your country as well) at least one of the spouses must be a Catholic. Each church has different requirements though.
Documents for the Religious Ceremony in Italy:
Considering that it may take some time to get the paperwork for your Wedding ceremony, I recommend you start collecting them, from 6 to 4 months before the wedding. Besides, it is important to keep in mind that most of them are valid for 3 months only. The only exceptions are the certificate of baptism, holy communion, and confirmation.
In any case, we suggest booking the church at least a year before the desired Wedding date, or even more in advance if the church is very popular.
Catholic wedding requirements:
- Contact your local Priest to tell him you want to get married in Italy. He will give his approval after checking your certificate of baptism, first communion and confirmation. If you don’t have them and your local Parish can’t give you the originals, ask for some copies. They should be sealed by your local Bishop.
- Follow the Pre-Cana Classes and get the corresponding certificate.
- Ask your Priest to write a Formal Letter and the Prenuptial Enquiry form
1. The formal letter (NULLA OSTA) from your parish priest grants permission for the wedding to be held in a specific church in the Sorrento Coast, Amalfi Coast, Capri and Ischia.
This letter is required by the Italian Curia to show that you have received permission from your parish priest to have your wedding ceremony performed. It should certify that your priest knows you and allows you to get married at the Italian Church of XXXXXX at the date XXXXX. This letter needs to be written on the letterhead paper of your Parish.
2. Your priest should also secure a letter from the Bishop of the parish stating the same as in #1 and this letter should also be written on letterhead paper.
The Bishop's consent to the wedding is one of the most important requirements for the Italian Curia. It must certify that you have “No impediments” to get married at the Italian Church of XXXXXX (name of the church) at the date XXXXX (the date you are asking). This letter needs to be written on the letterhead paper of your Bishop's office. This letter shows that approval has been given by the authority over the priest who has written the letter referred in #1.
3. The letter from the priest must also state that you have fulfilled all Pre-Cana procedures, and should include the certificate showing that you attended the premarital classes.
4. The Original Prenuptial Inquiry Form has to be issued by your parish and be on formal church letterhead paper of your Parish.
The prenuptial inquiry form is a type of signed questionnaire with church seals/signatures. Moreover this document must be stamped by the local Bishop's office (NOT just your priest).
A PRENUPTIAL INQUIRY is issued by the archdiocese of your city/town. It is the prenuptial investigation that includes your dates, names and general religious data which your priest completes together with you. Your priest completes the questionnaire stating it has been approved so you can get married, signing the document as final approval. Then this document has to be sealed by your local Bishop, so the Italian Curia has the proof that it has been definitely approved by a higher member of the Catholic Church in your country.
5. ALL certificates of baptism, first communion and confirmation must be sent together with the Prenuptial inquiry form and letters mentioned in # 1, # 2 and must also be stamped by the local Bishop's office. All these sacraments have to be received in order to have the Catholic wedding performed. Ask your Parish priest who performed these sacraments to provide these certificates. If you have problems obtaining the originals, ask for copies that must then be sealed by your local bishop. The seals of the bishop are required on these documents by the Italian Curia.
6. In the event the Italian priest will not perform the civil part of the ceremony (because you are already married in your country) the couple have to provide the original civil wedding certificate. Please note: Not only the wedding license (issued in the USA) but the original certificate that you are legally married.
7. If one of you is not Catholic you will be required to obtain another document such as "Permission of mixed religions" to testify that the wedding celebration can be performed by the Italian Church. Generally this document is issued by the local Bishop of your country. Ask for this information in your Parish, so they can help you to obtain this special permission.
All the documents mentioned (excluding #6) MUST have been sealed or stamped by the Bishop's parish office. It is necessary for us to receive copies of all of these documents to verify with the Italian Church that they are complete.
THEN ALL THE COPIES OF THESE DOCUMENTS SHOULD BE SENT DIRECTLY TO THE DIOCESAN ADDRESS OF THE SPECIFIC CHURCH IN THE SORRENTO COAST, AMALFI COAST, CAPRI OR ISCHIA AND THE SPECIFIC PRIEST IN SORRENTO, POSITANO, AMALFI, RAVELLO, CAPRI, ISCHIA HAS FINAL SAY ON GRANTING OFFICIAL PERMISSION FOR THE WEDDING TO MOVE FORWARD AFTER SEEING THE PAPERWORK. THE NULLA OSTA MUST BE DATED WITHIN 6 MONTHS OF THE WEDDING DATE OTHERWISE IT WILL EXPIRE.
Please note: If you have been divorced in the Catholic Church and your marriage was not officially annulled you cannot marry in the Catholic Church. Please, advise us if you have had your marriage annulled. After the Catholic wedding, the church will send copies of the marriage certificate to the Town Hall in Sorrento, Positano, Amalfi, Ravello, Capri or Ischia, which you may obtain through us.