Weddings: Cathedral Requirements


At Sacred Heart Cathedral we accept wedding bookings up to eighteen months in advance. Please contact the Cathedral on (03) 5443 4400 to discuss available dates. Your booking is confirmed when we receive the registration form (available after initial enquiry) and your deposit of $200 (non-refundable) cheque or money order made payable to ‘Sacred Heart Cathedral’. Confirmation is required within 2 weeks of the initial booking.


As of the 1st July 2019 (weddings scheduled after this date) the fee will be $1000 to be married at Sacred Heart Cathedral.

Please contact the Cathedral Office to make a booking.  The completed form must be returned with a non-refundable Deposit of $200 to secure your booking.

This will then be deducted from the total fee, which will be due one month prior to your wedding date. Payment can be made in cash at the parish office, bank cheque, money order or an online transfer:
BSB: 083 543 - Account NO: 457 867 616

Please note the above fee is for the use of the Cathedral only.

Changes to bookings

Any change should be made known as soon as possible in writing. It is important that the ceremony commence at the time arranged so as not to effect other ceremonies which may have been scheduled in Sacred Heart Cathedral. IF FOR ANY REASON YOU WISH TO CANCEL THE BOOKING, YOU SHOULD WRITE OR RING AS EARLY AS POSSIBLE.

Marriage Preparation

A very important part of your preparation is a pre-marriage education which you should attend. During your engagement prayer and presence at Mass are central to your spiritual preparation.

Marriage Preparation is offered and strongly recommended through Centacare.This will be discussed with the priest celebrating the marriage.

These books may be helpful to you and are available from the Cathedral bookstore:
Couples Preparing for Marriage - by Barry Hickey
When We Marry - a publication of the Liturgical Commission, Brisbane
Your Wedding - a Redemptorist publication.
Together for Life by Joseph M. Champlin (given as a gift to the couple).

Marriage Papers

Parties to a marriage must complete a series of documents before marriage. These are required by Church and Government authorities and need to be complete not more than six months and not less than one clear month before the marriage. These papers are prepared by the celebrant unless other arrangements have been made.

Certificates Required

You will require the following certificates to enable the priest to prepare your marriage papers.

Birth Certificate of Extract of Entry of Birth. In the case of persons born in Victoria this is obtainable from the Registrar of Births, 589 Collins Street, Melbourne.

Baptism Certificate issued within six months of the date of marriage. In the case of baptised persons, a Baptism Certificate can be obtained by writing to the church where the Baptism took place. When doing so, please include a stamped, self addressed envelope and give your full name, date of birth, parents’ names and date of baptism if known. A Certificate of Confirmation is also requested.

Letter of Freedom is required for all Catholics not living in Sacred Heart Cathedral Parish. This is obtained from the bride’s or grooms’ parish priest.

The Catholic bride, or the Catholic party to a marriage in which only one party is Catholic, is requested as a courtesy to have permission of his/her parish priest to marry at Sacred Heart Cathedral.

Declaration of Freedom

Civil Law requires that both parties sign a declaration before marriage that they are free to marry. This declaration is normally made at the time of the rehearsal.


Any Catholic priest or deacon registered with the Civil authorities as a Celebrant of Marriages may officiate, provided the Administrator of Sacred Heart Cathedral is advised in advance and the normal protocols are followed.


The Ceremony

Marriage ceremonies in Sacred Heart Cathedral follow ‘The Rite of Marriage’ approved for use in Australia by the Sacred Congregation for Divine Worship and issued by authority of the Australian Episcopal Conference. The ceremony must be prepared with the assistance of the celebrant.

Wedding Booklet

When preparing your wedding booklet, you should consult with the celebrant regarding the content. The celebrant must approve the copy before printing and the booklet must be in accord with ‘The Rite of Marriage’ as approved for use in Australia.



Two witnesses over the age of 18 years are required to sign the marriage register.


Marriages of two-baptised Catholics

Marriages where both parties are Catholic may be celebrated with Nuptial Mass. This presupposes the couple would have been present during Mass on Sundays during the engagement and is prepared for the reception of the Eucharist during Mass.


Marriage of Interdenominational People

 The Catholic partner in a marriage where the other partner is not a Catholic, is required to sign a promise stating: "I reaffirm my faith in Jesus Christ, and with God's help, I intend to continue living that faith in the Catholic Church. I promise to do all in my power to share my faith with our children by having them baptised and brought up in the Catholic faith. My intended partner has been informed of my declaration and promise". Normally Mass is not celebrated with a Mixed Marriage. However, if both parties freely ask for it, permission is given.



Photography and recordings are permitted in the Cathedral.  However, it is important that the people you hire for this are instructed to be discreet and non-intrusive, and observe any directions given them by the celebrant.



If you wish to provide flowers for the Cathedral, please contact Mrs. E. Gallagher (5443 6539) in the week before the marriage. Flowers should be brought to the Cathedral at 2.00 pm on the day prior to the marriage. Members of the Altar Society will arrange them.



Mr. John Hogan is the Cathedral Organist, and is responsible for all music in the Cathedral. If you wish to have a singer this must be arranged in conjunction with Mr. Hogan. Any other instrumentalist must also have his approval. Mr. Hogan will demonstrate a wide range of music that is suitable. The organist's fee is $100.00. He can be contacted on (03) 5443 0363 or at 44 Mackenzie Street Bendigo. If CDs are to be used, care must be taken to ensure that copyright permission has been obtained.



Confetti or rice is not permitted in or anywhere around the Cathedral. It would be appreciated if you made this clear to your guests.