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:

Here is a letter and some information from Patricia Wiedemer who has put together the course.

Hello, Last week Gerry Gabriel, Chancellor for the Diocese of Charlottetown, gave me a call and asked if I would send some info on marriage prep for the diocesan web-page.

In 2016 Bishop Grecco asked me to offer a course and this is what I have been doing. He has approved of what I am offering and since then many couples approach me to get ready for marriage. I am not the official diocesan rep for this, 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.

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 baptised, 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.

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

  • Gaining Understanding of the Theology of Marriage
    • Difference between Natural-Civil-Sacramental marriage
    • Human aspects of relationships (Physical-emotional-psychological-spiritual-intellectual)
    • The meaning of the human person being body and soul and made in the image of God.
    • What is Eucharistic Love?
  • Why is God Part of the Marriage Relationship?
    • Does it really make a difference for me, my spouse and or our marriage if I/we believe or not?
    • Why the Church is involved and understanding of the sacramental life of the Church.
  • Theology of the Body
    • What does the human experience teach us about relationships/marriage today?
    • 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?
    • The meaning and truth of family and its role in a healthy society.
    • 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 sessions. There are three options:

  1. Individual meetings in Charlottetown at the PEI Right to Life Office, in Charlottetown. times are set according to mutual schedules.
  2. Group courses are available when enough couples are requesting preparation. Group courses can be 4 separates sessions or a day&half course depending on the group.
  3. Course options at request of priest. (Individual arrangement)

Option one is to be recommended as it is the most rewarding and can deal with the individual needs.

Payment:  $230 per couple – this includes materials

This is to be made at the first session or in advance if a group session is booked.

If the course takes place at the parish, the parish is asked to provide a room suitable for this kind of meeting and compensate for travel expenses.


Option 1: Individual couples are asked to find times to meet between 9am and 8pm. We meet at the PEI Right to Life Office, 209 A Queen Street, Charlottetown, (downstairs office), PEI; Mondays through Fridays. Generally, the course should take 4-6 weeks to complete. Each session is about 2 hours.

Option 2 and 3: Group sessions can be arranged for evenings and weekends in advance.

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.                              Feb 1st, 2019

Pat Wiedemer grew up in PEI, left to discover the big-wide world after school and like all good folks, has now returned to her hometown. Pat spent many years abroad and has a great love for the Catholic Church and the Pro-life movement and has been active in many different capacities. She brings with her over 20 years of 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 her five kids, golden retriever dog, two cats and a rabbit! She is active in the diocese in offering marriage prep with her Heart-of-the-Matter Marriage Prep Course for Modern Couples and as well as being the Director of Religious Education for St Dunstan’s Basilica Parish. Pat is also the Executive Director of the PEI Right to Life Association.

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