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The Most Reverend Martin de Porres Griffin

Bishop Martin de Porres Griffin is a priest of the American Catholic Church, Diocese of California. Bp. Martin de Porres is an independent Catholic priest with valid sacramental orders and faculties. The American Catholic Church is an independent (Old Catholic Church) Catholic Church with validly recognized sacraments by Catholic jurisdictions. Bp. Martin de Porres is a school administrator and serves as the Pastor of St. John the Beloved Parish in San Diego, CA. Bp. Martin de Porres has celebrated many weddings and is available to celebrate weddings with nuptial mass or wedding without a nuptial mass. Bp. Martin de Porres is located in the San Diego area and does weddings in San Diego, Orange, Riversideand Los Angelescounties. Bp. Martin de Porres is bilingual, English-Spanish.

Personalization of Wedding Ceremonies

In creating a wedding ceremony, it is important to select a priest who is competent and experienced in pastoral care. Our experience is that couples want a ceremony which reflects who they are – their values and dreams. They appreciate a priest who will take the time to discuss the many options that are available to them.

Most ceremonies follow the traditional Catholic rite. We assist couples in personalizing their wedding ceremony, to make it truly their own. There are many ways in which this can be accomplished. Options for readings, both from the scriptures and other sources, which speak to marriage are permissible. Vows can be written by you or chosen from more traditional options. Ceremonies which speak to various ethnic groups such as the coin, rope and veil, hand fasting or jumping-the-broom ceremonies can also be accommodated. Unity candles, roses to parents, family blessings and other more traditional activities can be easily included. Discussing your wishes with the priest is the best way to assure that your day is special.

Previous Marriages

As Catholics, we believe in the sanctity of marriage; we also realize that we are only too human. When a marriage ends through divorce, it is often prima facie evidence that the essential element of marriage did not exist to maintain the bond. While we do not have an annulment or dispensation process, remarriage is allowed in order to avoid further human tragedy. From this perspective we solemnize remarriages with the joy and the peace of Christ.

Legal Issues

To be legally married, you will need to have a license from the county clerk or the state department of registration for the place in which the ceremony will occur. Often, there is a short waiting period, a definite expiration date and sometimes other requirements. After the ceremony, the priest will make sure that your license is signed and sent to the appropriate agency. He will also provide a marriage certificate for your more immediate use. You will need to have this or a document issued by the county clerk to change driver’s licenses, bank accounts, insurance plans and other legal documents after the wedding.

Religious Differences

As an ecumenical community, we are inclusive. We encourage you to consider how religious differences might impact your relationship. It is not one of those easily overlooked issues. We only ask that you raise any children in a loving household and teach them to love God and one another as He loves us, wholly and completely

Marriage Preparation Classes

Your marriage represents a change in how you see yourself and your relationship with others. It is both exciting and frightening. You can control only part of what happens to you. Your family and friends are here to support you and so is the community as a whole. Marriage (Pre-Cana) preparation courses and individual counseling can help. Our priests are available to assist you with marriage classes, as time and distance allow. Your marriage will work only if both of you are committed to making it work. Ideally, the priest would like to meet with you at least two before the ceremony. You may also wish to participate in some formal preparation and we recommend Engaged Encounter, a weekend program run by couples for couples as an excellent opportunity to learn some basic skills to enhance your marriage.

Recognition by the Roman Catholic Church

Each jurisdiction has its own criteria for recognition of sacraments. The American Catholic Church is not affiliated with the Roman Catholic church. Through apostolic succession in the Old Catholic tradition, we celebrate the same sacraments as those in the Roman and Orthodox communities. Your marriage will be legal with the state and as a sacrament in the eyes of God and churches of the Catholic Tradition.

Fees for Wedding Services

Our clergy attempt to work with all budgets without making this an obstacle to the ceremony. Wedding couples are asked to take into account how much they are spending on the wedding in relationship to how much of a stipend they are considering for their officiant. A reasonable stipend guide might be anywhere from $550.00 – $750.00 for a priest to officiate at a wedding. To secure a wedding date, the couple is asked to deposit a non-refundable stipend of $150.00 (which is subtracted from the stipend) on the day of their first meeting with the priest. The remainder of the stipend and any additional expenses are to be rendered to the priest on the day of the wedding. If the priest has to travel a distance, then wedding couples are often asked to cover the travel expenses, lodging, and meals for the priest. Acceptable forms of stipend may be rendered in the form of checks to be made out to the selected clergy person orcash.

What must I do to have a priest officiate at our wedding?

The first step is to complete and submit a Marriage Petition. This will allow Bp. Martin de Porres to check his calendar for availability on the date you are requesting to be married. If Bp. Martin de Porres is not available he may be able to refer you to another priest or deacon. Ideally, we would like to personally meet at least twice with a couple. When this is not practical email and telephone conversations may substitute. Your priest will work with you to discuss your marriage and help you plan your wedding.