Church Weddings in the Philippines

Find out about the requirements if you are planning a church wedding in the Philippines, and how to obtain the marriage certificate once the wedding has taken place...

If the wedding is to take place in church, the following documents must be provided:

  • Marriage License. This must have been issued within the 120 days or four months validity period
  • Baptismal and Confirmation Certificates. The church requires proof that the bride and groom have received the Sacraments of Baptism and Confirmation. The copies to be submitted must be acquired three months before the wedding, with an annotation “For marriage purposes only”.  Some parishes are unable to process the request instantly, so make sure to apply for these documents well ahead of time
  • Copy of NSO Birth Certificate and Certificate of No Record of Marriage (CENOMAR). These documents can be secured online from the e-census website. These documents must have been issued in the last six months
  • Pre-Cana/Marriage Preparation Seminar. The aim of this seminar is for the engaged couple to gain insights about their new life together and try to resolve any issues prior to the wedding. Topics may include parenting, sexuality, financial stewardship and family planning. It is best to contact the church coordinator for schedules of seminar
  • Canonical Interview. This is the time when the bride and groom meet with the parish priest of the church they are marrying in. An appointment must be requested via the church coordinator. Ideally this should be done one to two months before the wedding
  • Marriage Banns. These are written announcements posted on the bulletin boards of the bride and groom’s respective parishes for three weeks. They are also read out at the end of each Mass. After three weeks, the engaged couple can request the letter from the parish office indicating that there was no impediment to the wedding and the wedding can now proceed
  • List of Principal Sponsors and Entourage Members. It is important to note that the names of the principal sponsors are needed, because these are included in the marriage licence
  • Confession. Some parishes require the engaged couples to receive the Sacrament of Penance before the wedding

Other requirements:

  • ID pictures. Size will depend on the church’s requirements
  • List of songs, if applicable. Some churches allow only church songs or hymns during the ceremony
  • Permits for photographers and videographers, if applicable
  • Check with the church coordinator if the church has dress requirements. Some conservative churches do not allow wedding dresses that show cleavage, shoulders, back or legs
How to Obtain a Marriage Certificate

This is an important document that contains all the details of the marriage signed by the couple and the witnesses. This document can be obtained one to two months after the wedding ceremony.

To facilitate verification and issuance of certification, the following information must be submitted by the requesting party:

  1. Full name of the husband
  2. Full name of the wife
  3. Date of marriage
  4. Place of marriage
  5. Full name and address of the requesting party
  6. Number of copies needed
  7. Reason why the certificate is needed