Marriage Preparation

Marriage Preparation

Parishes throughout the diocese offer a number of marriage preparation programs. To get more information, please contact your local parish.

One Marriage Preparation Course that is offered here on PEI is:

In 2016 Bishop Grecco asked me to offer a course for couples preparing for marriage. He has approved of what I am offering and since then many couples approach me to get ready for marriage. In the past years I have taught over 130 couples seeking to learn what they are doing when promising “to love one another until death do you part”. This is a big decision and we Catholics take it seriously.

I offer this as a private vendor at the request of the bishop. I say this because there may be others who offer as well.

My course is called The Heart-of-the Matter Marriage Prep and is offered by me, Heart-of-the-Matter Catholic Consulting. It is my hope that after this course you will be empowered to defend your choice for marriage in the Catholic Church as a true sign of the face of God in our world today.

Why does the Church ask that we take a marriage preparation course?

When a person receives a sacrament in the Church, he/she needs to consent to Christ doing something in their life. For example, the godparents and parent provide this consent for a baby being baptized, the one who seeks reconciliation consents to Christ’s healing, and in marriage the bride and groom give their consent to Christ – that two become one. This consent is so important that we use words like vows and promise and speak in a unique way of a nuptial union or marital bond. For the consent to be valid, and as a result the sacrament to be valid, the bride and groom must come freely and be free to give themselves fruitfully, faithfully and totally to one another.

A marriage preparation course leads the couple, through teaching and discussion, to understand the fullness of the consent they are about to give so that both bride and groom for their own sake as well as that of the beloved, know what she/he is promising. Love is a choice for the good of the other and it is right that bride and groom understand what that choice means.

A marriage preparation course should also reveal how God is involved in this relationship and why it is vital to the marital relationship to have a relationship with Christ. It is God who will provide the love we need to move beyond our own human limitations so that we can truly love one another with a love that is divine. His love is the power behind your love and the strength upholding your marriage.

Heart-of-the-matter Marriage Prep course is a challenging review of how God has already been working in your life and how you can now take this relationship “to the next level”! In every other area of our lives we update and have the latest edition of information, this marriage prep course is the next upgrade for your relationship. What you have now is good, but as a sacrament of love it will be even better!

This marriage course prepares the couple for marriage in the Catholic Church. By that it is meant:

Gaining Understanding of the Theology of Marriage
o Difference between Natural-Civil-Sacramental marriage
o Human aspects of relationships (Physical-emotional-psychological-spiritual-intellectual)
o The meaning of the human person being body and soul and made in the image of God.
o What is Eucharistic Love?

Why is God Part of the Marriage Relationship?
o Does it really make a difference for me, my spouse and or our marriage if I/we believe or not?
o What can God do for me and our marriage that I cannot do for myself?
o Why the Church is involved and understanding of the sacramental life of the Church.

Theology of the Body
o What does the human experience teach us about relationships/marriage today?
o How and why your relationship with Christ and the Church will affect your relationship.

What difference does it make whether we are Catholic or not?
o The meaning and truth of family and its role in a healthy society.
o The meaning and truth about living out the Universal Call to Holiness as baptized Catholics.

Within the course emphasis is laid on the importance of prayer, the sacrament of reconciliation and the importance of an active attendance of the Mass. Reading material concerning couple’s communication and relationship are expected to be completed by the couples at home. The topic of finances is reviewed as is the liturgy.

The main focus of this course is to understand that a holy and successful marriage is dependent on the right understanding of your relationship with God, His Church and each other.

“For you this is impossible, but with God all things are possible” Matthew 19:26

Set Up:
Course consists of four main sessions. There are three options:

Individual meetings via ZOOM. Times are set according to mutual schedules.

Group courses are available when enough couples are requesting preparation. Group courses are a day&half (Friday evening/all day Saturday) held in person at Catholic Centre, 350 North River Rd, Charlottetown, PE, C1A 8T9.

Course options at request of priest in your parish. (Individual arrangement)

Option one is to be recommended as it is the most rewarding and can deal with the individual needs.
Payment: $250 per couple – this includes tax and materials.
Payment is to be made via etransfer to

Pat Wiedemer can be contacted at:
Telephone or text at: 902-393-6047
You may leave a message and I will get back to you.

This course has the approval of the diocese and is provided by:
The-Heart-of-the-Matter Catholic Consulting
16 Shelby Court
Charlottetown PEI
C1E 1R5

The above conditions are in effect until superseded by a new program. June 30, 2021

Pat Wiedemer grew up on the Island, spent many years abroad raising her family and fostering her  great love for the Catholic Church and the Pro-life movement. She brings with her over 25 years of professional experience in catechetical ministry and, among other degrees, holds a Master´s Degree in Catholic Theology. Pat is widowed and lives in West Royalty with three of her five kids, golden retriever dog, and two cats. Since moving back to PEI Pat has been offering marriage prep in the diocese with her Heart-of-the-Matter Marriage Prep Course for Modern Couples, was the Director of Religious Education for St Dunstan’s Basilica Parish for 5 years, and is also the Executive Director of the PEI LIFE Association.

Here is a colour brochure with information on the Marriage Preparation course.