"I promise to be true to you in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health. I will love you and honor you all the days of my life."
Rite of Christian Marriage
The Vocation of Marriage is the divine call to show forth the love of God for the world in the love of husband and wife for each other. The bride and the groom at the wedding are themselves the “ministers” of this sacrament. For Roman Catholics, a priest or deacon must witness the marriage with two other witnesses (normally the best man and maid of honor). The Church imposes numerous requirements on a couple to marry validly because the commitment of married love is so important for the couple and plays such an integral role in the sacramental life of the Church.
The celebration of the sacrament of marriage, which is rooted in the Sunday assembly, is not a private family function, nor is it merely a social affair or a personal expression of your love for one another. Rather, it is an action of the entire Church, in whose presence two people commit themselves to one another. Because the sacrament of marriage is worship, it is above all, congregational. And because it is congregational, every effort should be made to enable the assembly to participate in a full and active manner.
According to our Catholic faith, Jesus lifted marriage to the level of a sacrament - revelatory of the love of God for us. The fact that his first miracle occurred at a wedding and his view on the unbreakable marital bond are sited as arguments for this. Nevertheless, it took the church more than 1,000 years to develop a ritualized and codified sacrament of marriage. And it was not until the twelfth and thirteenth centuries that marriage became a universally recognized sacrament.