Marriage Information


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The wedding day is a celebration of one of the most important decisions in a couple’s life.  In the celebration of the sacrament of holy matrimony, the bride and groom make a commitment to last their whole life.  It is the beginning of a way of life that all should revere and none undertake without reflection and consideration.

In choosing to celebrate your marriage in the Church, you are saying some very important things about yourselves and your relationship.  You are saying something about your faith:  your relationship with God.  The wedding liturgy assumes that each of you is a Christian and that your intention is to live in a Christian marriage in which the ways of God in Jesus Christ are central to who you are and what you do.  You are asking God to be a part of your marriage.

Your wedding day is a wonderful celebration, but it is only the beginning of a lifetime commitment to one another.  That commitment will take you through good times and bad, through sickness and health, through wealth and poverty.  It is not an easy commitment to keep.  To help you prepare for this commitment and to give you the tools to set the groundwork for a lasting relationship we strongly recommend a marriage preparation course.

Before the Wedding

You should contact the Incumbent as soon as possible to arrange an initial meeting (at least sixty days before the intended date).  At the initial meeting, you will be asked to fill out a form with your names, the proposed date of the marriage, and other details of the wedding.  The preference of this parish is to marry those who have a strong connection to the parish (i.e. active participation, not history) so you are encouraged to attend Sunday worship at least once before your wedding in order to be introduced to the parish.

Some information to bring with you to the first meeting includes:  certificates of birth and baptism, and places of birth of the bride and groom and both sets of parents.  At the first meeting, you will meet the Incumbent and be asked to share some of your history and expectations for marriage.  Generally, after the first meeting, you will meet with the Incumbent at least three more times to discuss the Church's teaching on marriage, your understanding of that teaching, the experience of the marriage preparation course (if attended), and the planning of the service.

A marriage preparation course is a strongly recommended.  These courses are offered by trained marriage counsellors who will address issues such as roles, expectations, finances, sexuality, and long-range planning.  These courses can generally be found in urban centres, such as Belleville and Kingston and are usually held in the late winter.  If you are from another area, you should be able to find one in a city near you.

Licence/Banns

Most couples will be married by licence.  Please talk to the Incumbent about the guidelines for being married by banns (an option only for those who are active members of the parish).

A licence can be obtained from any municipal office, including Napanee and Belleville, during business hours.  You can also download the application for a licence from the Government of Ontario website, Getting Married.  Following is a list of requirements for application for a licence to marry in the Province of Ontario:

  • Marriage licences are only issued to the bride and/or groom

  • Both parties must sign the Marriage Licence application

  • Two (2) pieces of identification are required.  An original birth certificate or valid passport, any change of name certificates, record of immigrant landing or Canadian Citizenship card plus photo identification for both parties, regardless of whether both parties are present at the office

  • If you have been divorced in Canada, the original or court-certified copy of the Decree Absolute or Certificate of Divorce from the court where the divorce was granted is required

  • If you were divorced outside Canada, please request foreign divorce instructions

  • There are no residency, medical, or citizenship restrictions

  • A marriage licence is valid for use anywhere in Ontario for a period of three (3) months from the date of issue

  • Sixteen (16) and seventeen (17) year-olds require both parents’ consent (see licence issuer for form)

  • Allow twelve (12) weeks to pass after the marriage if you wish to apply for a certificate of marriage

Please do not fill in the licence.  The Incumbent will do that for you, which will require you leaving the licence with the Incumbent at least one week before the date of the wedding.

Music

The parish organist is available to play for weddings.  The fee is $75.00.  Couples may choose to supply their own musicians; however, the organist fee must still be paid (see the Fees section below).

The presider of the marriage has absolute discretion concerning the selection of appropriate music.  The scope is quite broad, with the main principle underlying the selection of pieces being that it should reflect our praise of and thanksgiving to God.  Vocal music, in particular, must be chosen carefully to ensure that it meets this requirement.  This is easily accomplished by choosing music based on Scripture or taken from the liturgical/sacred repertoire.

The Liturgy

There are two liturgical forms generally available in the Anglican Church of Canada.  These are in modern language and reflect the current theology of the sacrament of holy matrimony in the Church.  One is the wedding service with Holy Eucharist (Communion) and the other is without.

Both services allow for the couple to choose several readings, which they should do in consultation with the Incumbent.  These readings, as well as the Prayers of the People, may be read by friends or family.

Canon Law dictates the requirements of the liturgy.  If you would like to suggest a variation, please consult the Incumbent to see if it is possible.

Things to Remember

The best man should have the ring(s) by the time the bride and the groom are together at the front of the church.  If there are ring bearers with pillows, the rings should not be tied to the pillow:  fumbling hands can make a knot impossible to untie.

Civil law prohibits the marriage of any person who is under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol.  If you are planning on having a party, please watch what you consume, or even better, have it two nights before the wedding.

Flowers

Altar flowers can be arranged through the church (or through a florist after consulting with the Incumbent) and must not be artificial.  They are placed to the Glory of God and are a gift to the church.

Other arrangements, such as at the chancel step, or on the ends of the pews, may be arranged through a florist.  They may be placed in the church at the discretion of the Incumbent as to location and number.  Since there are sometimes other services on the day of the wedding, please ensure that these flowers are removed in short order following the service.

Confetti

The use of confetti, flower petals, birdseed and rice is prohibited inside the church and on the walkways outside.  As with any other damage, it will be at the discretion of the Incumbent to charge the wedding party for cleaning costs.

Photographs

You will, no doubt, want to take many pictures of this special day and we will do all that we can to assist you in taking as many pictures as you need.

A wedding is, however, a service of worship.  The movement of photographers, and the noise and flash of cameras can be a distraction.  Therefore, photographs are not permitted during the service (with the exception of the processional, signing of the register and the recessional).  After the service, however, the wedding party is free to pose as many pictures as they like.  The only exception to this rule is a professional photographer whose services have been engaged for the wedding.

Fees

There is a fee for the use of the church and for the organist.  As the Parish is the organist's workplace, it is expected that even if you have outside musicians, the organist's fee will still be paid.  There is no fee as such for the priest, however, you are invited to reflect on the importance of the priest to the successful completion of your special day.  Christians are taught that we should give generously to God out of the bounty provided to us through God's blessing.  It is no less important as you consider being married in a religious liturgy that generosity and thanksgiving be the motivation for your giving.  For more information, please see the separate Schedule of Fees.

Fee Schedule

We are a parish of the Anglican Diocese of Ontario in the Anglican Church of Canada
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