Phillip and ThiLee Pijajn wedding
Photo provided by: 
Phillip and ThiLee Pijahn

Plan a Wedding

Planning Your Marriage at The Basilica of Saint Mary

Welcome to our marriage preparation process.  We hope your experience is one that enriches you as a couple,and provides you with a solid foundation as you begin your sacramental marriage together.

The love between a man and a woman is a gift from God.  The commitment two people make to be together for the rest of their lives and to accept children from God is sealed before the community and God during the celebration of the sacrament of marriage.

Getting Married at The Basilica

  • Either the bride or groom must be a registered member of The Basilica for at least three months prior to putting a wedding date on hold or booking a wedding date. They also should attend a New Member dinner or brunch if joining The Basilica.
  • The couple must complete a marriage preparation program.

Basilica Wedding Times

Friday evening: 5:00pm
Saturday: Noon and 3:00pm

Marriage Preparation

This is your opportunity to reflect on and explore the sacramental and vocational nature of your life-long commitment in marriage.

The Basilica will do all we can to make sure you are prepared for this important, holy and life-long commitment.  Through the program, couples will discuss all aspects of marriage: spiritual, relational, and practical. 

  • The Basilica’s preparation program fulfills the standard marriage preparation requirements for the Archdiocese of Saint Paul andMinneapolis.
  • Couples should begin marriage preparation at least ten months to one year before their wedding

Preparation Checklist

You will receive a checklist to follow as you move through your preparation process at The Basilica. This checklist ensures you have enough time to truly benefit from each step, and have time to work on any elationship issues that may come to light.

We have discovered that if preparation begins too close to the wedding day, the couple tends to get caught up in the wedding day preparation and have a hard time giving adequate energy to important aspects of their own relationship.

Marriage preparation and wedding fee

The Basilica charges a marriage preparation and wedding fee of $1,200.

  • A 50% deposit is made to secure the date, this is non-refundable.
  • The balance is due two weeks before the wedding. 
  • One half of the full fee of $1200 is refundable, if the fee is paid in full, should the wedding be canceled.

Marriage preparation only (wedding elsewhere) fee is $500.

For more information on having your wedding at the Basilica, please contact Nancy Keller, 612.317.3478.

Our marriage preparation process includes:

  • Welcome meeting
  • Foundations of Marriage class
  • Administration of a pre-marriage inventory called PREPARE
  • Meetings to review results of the PREPARE inventory (with the marriage director or a marriage mentor couple from the parish)
  • Engaged Temperament Retreat (a separate fee)
  • Wedding workshop
  • Individual meeting(s) with our wedding liturgy planner
  • Production of a wedding program/leaflet
  • Meeting with wedding officiant: priest/deacon
  • Wedding rehearsal
  • Parish wedding coordinator on day of wedding

Additional Resources

Frequently Asked Questions about Marriage Preparation

Q:  We are not members but have been attending The Basilica.  Can we book a wedding date?

A:  Unfortunately, no.  Since we get so many requests for weddings we need to honor our three-month membership policy consistently.

Q:  If my fiancée/fiancé is not Catholic, can we still be married at The Basilica?

A:  Yes, only one of you needs to be Catholic.

Q:  We don’t want to wait 10 months to a year. Can we book a sooner date?

A:  On rare occasions.

  • If a couple has already done some marriage preparation elsewhere.
  • If a couple is willing to begin our preparation. This involves at least completing the pre-marriage inventory and one review meeting before securing a date so we can get a good sense of the strength of their relationship.

Q:  My fiancée/fiancé does not live in the Twin Cities. How can we do the preparation?

A:  We can often be quite creative about how to accomplish the preparation when a couple or one of the two do not live locally.

Q:  We are members but will not be getting married at The Basilica.  Can we still do our preparation here?

A:  Yes. We will discuss our preparation-only fee with you.

Q:  One of us has been married before.  Will that prevent us from booking a wedding date?

A:  In the Catholic Church, all previous marriages must be discussed before a wedding date can be booked.  The marriage director can determine what will need to be done. If an annulment is needed, the marriage director can explain that process and help you begin.

Q:  Can we have our own musicians?

A:  The Basilica wedding policy booklet answers all questions related to the wedding ceremony and wedding day.

For any unanswered questions or to discuss a wedding at The Basilica, you can contact the marriage office at 612.317.3414.