Sacred Scripture begins with the creation and union of man and woman and ends with “the wedding feast of the Lamb” (Rev 19:7, 9). Scripture often refers to marriage, its origin and purpose, the meaning God gave to it, and its renewal in the covenant made by Jesus with his Church.  Man and woman were created for each other.

By their marriage, the couple witnesses Christ’s spousal love for the Church. One of the Nuptial Blessings in the liturgical celebration of marriage refers to this in saying, “Father, you have made the union of man and wife so holy a mystery that it symbolizes the marriage of Christ and his Church.”

The Sacrament of Marriage is a covenant, which is more than a contract. Covenant always expresses a relationship between persons. The marriage covenant refers to the relationship between the husband and wife, a permanent union of persons capable of knowing and loving each other and God. The celebration of marriage is also a liturgical act, appropriately held in a public liturgy at church. Catholics are urged to celebrate their marriage within the Eucharistic Liturgy.

United States Catholic Catechism for Adults


Preparation for the Sacrament of Matrimony will normally take between 4-6 months. After you have contacted the priest/deacon who will be celebrating your marriage they will walk you through what will be required for preparation. It will normally consist of a few meetings with the priest/deacon as well as attending a marriage preparation workshop with the Archdiocese.

Click here to see marriage preparation options through the Archdiocese of Atlanta, including Joy Filled MarriageOnline Marriage Prep, and other Marriage Prep Programs.

The Joy-Filled Marriage program is offered in two parts which must be taken on two separate SaturdaysLiving a Joy-Filled Marriage, and God’s Plan for a Joy-Filled Marriage.  Both programs are concomitantly offered at the Chancery on the Saturdays listed below.  Both need to be attended in order to receive the marriage certificate, which will be given after attendance of the second part, God’s Plan for a Joy-Filled Marriage. Click here to register online.


Looking for a way to increase the love and romance in your marriage? Do you need time just for the two of you? Worldwide Marriage Encounter Weekend is the largest pro-marriage organization in the world and promotes weekend experiences for couples who want to make their good marriage even better. Instead of simply listening to lectures about how to improve your marriage, you will learn a practical communication technique and have an opportunity to rediscover your hopes and dreams for your marriage.

For Married Couples: St. Paul reminds us that there is abundant grace, faith and love available to us through Christ Jesus. Strengthen, renew, and rekindle your marriage sacrament by attending a Worldwide Marriage Encounter Weekend. You can get more information or apply online at or by calling 678-242-WWME.

Experiencing difficulties in your marriage? Retrouvaille is a program to help couples heal and renew their hurting marriages. Retrouvaille offers tools needed to rediscover a loving marriage. Tens of thousands of struggling marriages headed for cold, unloving relationships or divorce have successfully overcome their marriage problems by attending the program, which begins with a weekend experience that is followed by a series of follow-up sessions to help keep your healing on track and further develop the tools learned.

Witness to Love” is a new initiative based on the Marriage Catechumenate model encouraged by Pope Francis and St. Pope John Paul II. It combines a sponsor couple, picked by the engaged couple, and part two of the “Joy-Filled Marriage” workshop. More details and registration are available online. All couples receive a Certificate of Completion at the end of the second Saturday. Understanding some couples may need more flexibility with two Saturdays, please consider

“Love Again” is a quarterly workshop that offers life-skills for couples who are marrying after a previous marriage. This includes couples in which one or both of the partners have experienced an annulment, being widowed, a civil marriage or anticipate a blending of families. “Love Again” combined with a second Saturday focused on sacramental preparation completes the marriage preparation process for these couples. Visit the Archdiocese of Atlanta website for registration.

Catholic Engaged Encounter is an in-depth, private, personal, marriage preparation experience within the context of Catholic faith and values. The weekend is open to any engaged couple wanting to prepare for a deeper, more meaningful life together in a marriage recognized by the Catholic Church according to its Church law.