How to make the first contact?
When you are beginning to make your first plans for a church wedding- pop into to the Church or telephone the Parish Priest. You will be able to talk to us about the availability of dates.
Do you meet the requirements for a qualifying connection to St Philip’s?
From 1st October 2008 there are new rules governing who is able to be married in Church by Banns. In order to get married at St Philip’s Church you need to meet the qualifying requirements:
A person has a Qualifying Connection with a parish and is therefore able to be married by banns licence if that person:
- was baptised in the parish.; or
- had his or her confirmation entered in a church register book of a church or chapel in the parish; or
- has at any time had his or her usual place of residence in the parish for at least 6 months; or
- has at any time habitually attended public worship in the parish for at least 6 months; or
- a Parent of that person has at any time during that person’s lifetime:
- had his or her usual place of residence in the parish for at least 6 months; or
- habitually attended public worship in the parish for at least 6 months; or
- a Parent or Grandparent of that person was married in the parish.
- Only one person in the party (i.e. the bride or the groom) has to be able to demonstrate a connection.
How old are you?
You need to be at least 16, and until you are 18 you need parental consent.
Are you a British Citizen?
If you or your partner are not British Citizens, another procedure will need to be followed and you will need to speak to the Parish Priest as soon as possible to check whether it will be possible to be married here.
Once all these questions are answered, a date can be pencilled in the church diary and you will be asked to confirm your details in writing and to send a deposit to book the wedding.
What happens then?
Three months before your wedding date, you will need to meet with the Priest, and to complete the paperwork so that the Banns can be called. You will need to bring your passports and a utility bill to that meeting. At that meeting the dates for the Banns to be called will be agreed.
The Banns are called in church during the 9.45am Sunday Service – we would like you to be present for this!
Other dates will be agreed for preparation and for the rehearsal. One meeting may be held in your own home – the rehearsal will be just before the wedding in church.
Why all these meetings?
It seems like a lot of meetings, but it is important to understand the meaning of Christian marriage, and this is the main focus of all the meetings and discussions. In addition to that there are practical things, too – you will need to choose hymns, Bible reading/s, and to think about music.
The final costs will be clarified – although you will be given an indication of costs when you make your first call. Fees need to be paid at least a month in advance.
And on the Great day?
By the time the ‘Big Day’ comes, we hope that you will feel confident about everything and that the church ceremony will be a meaningful start to your married life together. Congratulations!
What if we were married by a civil ceremony – can we have a blessing?
This has to be on a different day (not the same day as the wedding). You will have to produce the proof of your wedding (marriage certificate) when you book for the service.
What about the renewal of wedding vows?
We at St Philip’s also offer a service to celebrate a wedding anniversary with a renewal of wedding vows, and this can be arranged by contacting the Vicar.