Christians believe that marriage is a gift from God. A wedding or marriage service is a public declaration of love and commitment to your partner and a recognition of God's grace.
By getting married in church you are recognising that God cares about your relationship and that you are seeking God's resources and strength. You are looking to God's love to sustain you, when things are good and in more difficult times. You will also have the support and encouragement of the wider Christian family.
You will probably spend many hours planning your wedding. There are so many things to think about - what to wear, the cake, whom to invite, the honeymoon.
Alongside the wedding preparations it is also important to spend time as a couple talking through your expectations of marriage.
A. As soon as you have decided that you would like to be married at Central, contact the Minister to make an appointment to meet, either at your home or at Church. You will meet several times to discuss what marriage in Church is about; to decide this is what you wish to proceed with; to set a date; to discuss how you might prepare for your lifelong commitment to each other; what form the service will take; and in the week before the marriage for a rehearsal.
A. Banns are only read in Parish (Church of England) Churches. Marriage at Central is by Registrar’s Certificate.
Before the wedding: the Minister will explain how and when to contact the Registrar to obtain your certificates. You must get these well before the wedding as without them your marriage would not be valid.
During the service: the declarations and vows must use precise phrases set by law.
A. At Central we affirm that marriage is for life. We also recognize that some marriages fail and accept, therefore, that divorced persons may marry again.
As part of your preparation for your new marriage and what it means to you, you will want to consider:
A. Our standard fee includes the use of the Church and fees for the Minister, an organist and a Church steward. Extra charges are made if you wish to have a Powerpoint presentation, including the words of your hymns, and photographs of the bride and groom, or if you would like us to arrange your flowers. Full details of the fees click here
A. You will have plenty of opportunity to discuss the service in detail with the Minister. Some people like to write the major part of the service themselves, others like to use the standard format offered in the Methodist Worship Book. You will be able to borrow this to help you decide.
There are some parts of the service that you must have, by law, for the marriage to be legal. In addition, there are usually one or more readings from the Bible or other readings or poetry - we can help you select the most appropriate. Then the minister will give a brief talk. There will also be some prayers, which you may help to choose, or you may write your own. You may also decide to have someone other than the minister leading the readings and prayers. You may have friends or family members you would like to involve in the service, for example by doing a reading or playing a musical instrument. Most couple choose to have two or three hymns or songs during the service.
A. The Minister and the Director of Music can help you choose hymns and songs, as well as music for coming in, going out and during the signing of the register. Many couples choose to have some of their favourite music played from compact disks.
A. A wedding ring is a symbol of unending love and faithfulness, and of the commitment you are making to each other. It is entirely up to you whether you have one ring or two.