Church Wedding...MUST be a Member?!?!?

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Guest
Church Wedding...MUST be a Member?!?!?
Posted: Jan 2, 2008 12:53 PM

I will try to make this short...My Uncle (Mom's side) is an ordained Priest (Episcopal church) and has said that I MUST be a member of his church in order for him to officiate our wedding ceremony.

(Granted we have been engaged since July and are just finding this out...after being under the assumption that everything was fine for him to do the service, and we live 1.5 hours from his church, why would membership be mandatory?)

and now, living together seems to be an issue also...

Bottom line 1) Are you being required to be a MEMBER of a church in order to get married either at the church or by the minister/priest? 2) Has Living Together and/or sex been brought up???

Thanks


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Jerseygal8785 Posts : 144 Registered: 12/5/06
Re: Church Wedding...MUST be a Member?!?!?
Posted: Jan 2, 2008 1:35 PM Go to message in response to: Guest

At my church I am a member however you don't have to be you just need to be baptized.  I know my FH is of no religion and we have to fill out extra paperwork for us to get married there.  The priest was not happy about us living together but he will still marry us.  I know my friend's church wouldn't marry them if they are already living together.  We didn't mention sex to our priest either granted if we are asked, we will not lie.

Good Luck! I think as long as one of you is semi-practicing in teh religiong like for me in you are baptized in the catholic church then you can get married at the church.  If you can't get married in the church what about having your uncle perform it elsewhere?


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Guest
Re: Church Wedding...MUST be a Member?!?!?
Posted: Jan 2, 2008 1:41 PM Go to message in response to: Jerseygal8785

We are both baptized and are looking for a "church home" close to where we live. (It's not that we are some demon children who are not at all religious or just don't want to go to church lol)

My uncle will not marry us anywhere/anyhow if we do not "join" his church. I don't think the living together would stop him from marrying us and quite frankly my standpoint on sex is that it is between us and our relationship with Christ....NOT anyone else!!!!

Anyway, we have been to this church here a few times and like it and the minister...so i think we are going to talk to him about requirements for him to marry us. I just am really frustrated and hurt, maybe more because he is my uncle than because of his duties as a priest?!?!?!


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shelsgrl Posts : 164 Registered: 5/31/07
Re: Church Wedding...MUST be a Member?!?!?
Posted: Feb 12, 2008 1:57 PM Go to message in response to: Guest

My father is a Lutheran minister, and he does require couples to be members of his church to be married there.  The thinking is that, if it's important enough to the couple to be married in a church, they should be prepared to make that commitment as part of the church community, and continue that commitment after they're married, instead of just using the space and forgetting about the faith community that calls it home.  There are plenty of churches that do not require this, though...maybe you can find one like that and you uncle can just participate in the ceremony in another way.

 

"Rich is not how much you have, or where you are going, or even what you are. Rich is who you have beside you." ~JIK II

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futuremrsperry Posts : 1,904 Registered: 4/23/06
Re: Church Wedding...MUST be a Member?!?!?
Posted: Feb 16, 2008 6:22 PM Go to message in response to: Guest

For me, you had to be a member of the Diocese in order to get married in the Diocese.  You could pick from any church, including the cathedral down town.  We picked a chapel at a local college I attended.  But each Dioceses is different.

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robyn1113 Posts : 182 Registered: 8/2/07
Re: Church Wedding...MUST be a Member?!?!?
Posted: Feb 17, 2008 12:58 PM Go to message in response to: Guest

Man, I guess I got lucky. Our church says that as long as you are Christian, any denomination, you can get married there, member or not. FH and I don't go to any church, so we were quite lucky to have booked it when we did. Ours was the last Saturday available that month. Thank goodness it was the one we wanted!

Also, we haven't done any pre-marital counseling yet, but he's aware that we do live together and agreed to work with us. I guess we'll see what happens! 

 

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Love2u Posts : 1,661 Registered: 10/24/07
Re: Church Wedding...MUST be a Member?!?!?
Posted: Feb 17, 2008 2:28 PM Go to message in response to: Guest

I am also Episcopalean.  The rules for getting married in the Episcopal church are loosely regulated by the Anglican communion.  The rules that individual churches are guided by are mostly dependant on the governing local diocese.  Our church doesn't require membership in the church, however each of the couple must be baptised and counselling through the church is required.    Additionally, the cost for non-members is $500 more than the cost for members.  An example of variations of diocese rules include that our area Bishop doesn't allow couples to be married by priests outside the church (for example, in a park or other venue). 
Love2uKiss

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immigrants Posts : 349 Registered: 4/24/07
Re: Church Wedding...MUST be a Member?!?!?
Posted: Feb 18, 2008 10:01 AM Go to message in response to: Guest

We are Catholic and my son and FDIL already purchased their home. My FDIL's family do belong to a church but she didn't want to get married there because she likes the old fashion churches better so she went on a hunt for a church for her and my son to get married in. They were told they had to be members in order to get married at that church one priest got very upset because he said at his parish they get alot of people that want to be married there because it is beautiful inside and then they never come back once they are married. So not only do you have to be a member but alot of the churches wanted a huge amount of money like one of our beautiful churches are Sweeset Heart of Mary they want $ 1,200.00 just to get married then you also have to pay the priest, organist, soloist and so on. The priest did ask my son and FDIL if they were living together and when they said yes they bought a home it was not nice my son ended up coming back home to sleep but he is at their house most of the time my FDIL didn't want to lie to the priest if he started asking more questions and when they had one of their meetings last week the priest did bring up the fact about them living together but my FDIL said we no longer live together and thepriest was happy and never mentioned it again. We live in Michigan.

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JayJ Posts : 1,080 Registered: 4/22/07
Re: Church Wedding...MUST be a Member?!?!?
Posted: Feb 18, 2008 10:16 AM Go to message in response to: Guest

we discovered churches that told us yes and no. we had one (catholic) church tell us we had to attend 3 weekends a month for 6 months before we could even be approved to have our wedding there. actually, most of the catholic churches we saw said something along those lines. they seem to have much stricter rules, as far as i can tell. the problem we had is FH's family is catholic and mine is christian, plus neither of us practice at all. and if i did, i wouldn't change my religion just to use a church for our wedding.

we ended up finding an episcopal church that told us we were more than welcome to attend but we didn't have to. we just had to pay a little more than if we had been members. they also didn't mind that we lived together. so apparently it differs by church or minister or something...

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thebigcheese Posts : 155 Registered: 4/2/07
Re: Church Wedding...MUST be a Member?!?!?
Posted: Feb 19, 2008 3:22 PM Go to message in response to: Guest

Different churches have different rules about weddings.  It's up to you to decide if you want to abide by the rules, or find another church that is more accommodating to your beliefs and lifestyle.

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EveT2007 Posts : 1,949 Registered: 8/31/06
Re: Church Wedding...MUST be a Member?!?!?
Posted: Feb 19, 2008 3:37 PM Go to message in response to: thebigcheese

Hi, I am really sorry to hear that your uncle was so thoughtless as to keep from telling you about this until now.  Unfortunately our (Episcopal) priest did something similar, and we almost had to move our wedding to a different church right before the invitations were due to go in the mail.  Different individual churches have different policies, so it is not as simple as just knowing that if one Methodist church will agree to marry you, you can get married in any Methodist church (for example).

If the rule at your uncle's church is that you must be members and you don't wish to join -- or there isn't enough time to go through the membership process before your wedding date -- then by all means find another location to have your ceremony. 

If this is not actually rule but just something that your uncle is telling you, then I don't know what his problem is but it sounds awfully strange.

What do your parents have to say about this?

I wish you the best in finding a favorable solution!


EveT

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