If we decide to marry in Church, we are declaring to God that we want Him to be part of our wedding day, and ultimately, our lives together in the future. During a marriage ceremony we are to make very solemn vows and promises “in the presence of God”. If we don’t believe in God, then as a couple, we must decide if a church wedding is really what we want.
I don’t go to church – can I have a church wedding?
The minister will expect you to attend for at least six months prior to your wedding day. This will give you an opportunity to get to know your minister, meet the Organist, and familiarise yourself with the church. If you have not attended church before, it may seem very daunting at first, but it will also bring a new excitement into your life as you seek to know the blessing of God for your special day. The local church will also be delighted to see you!
If you are not a church member or regular attender, the minister will want to discuss with you whether a religious ceremony is what you are looking for, whether it will have meaning for you, and whether it is appropriate for your situation.
When can I marry?
The church will be booked for the date of your wedding only after you have met with the minister in person. Filling in the form involves no obligation either way; this is primarily for administration purposes. It is important to arrange an interview with the minister as soon as possible. We do not conduct weddings on a Sunday, but any other day is permissible.
How much does a church wedding cost?
Church fees will normally amount to £200. This is made up of a church contribution of £100 (to cover lighting & heating, and a donation to church funds), £50 for your organist, £25 for the church officer (who will co-ordinate every aspect of the wedding day), and £25 for the church cleaners. The most convenient way to pay the fees is for each of the above sums to be placed in separate envelopes marked “Church Donation”, ”Organist", "Church officer", and "Cleaners". Payments can be made by cash or cheque on the night of your wedding rehearsal.
When do I apply for the Marriage Licence?
Before you can marry in Scotland you must produce a "Schedule of Marriage". This is issued by the Registrar in whose area the wedding is to take place. In order to obtain a schedule, you must ensure that you produce for the Registrar a complete marriage notice form. The documents he/she will require: birth certificates, death certificates of any previous spouse, any certificates of divorce, and the appropriate fee in good time. Normally you can apply for the marriage licence up to 28 days before the wedding date.
When can I start planning the ceremony?
After you meet with the minister, he will give you an information booklet which will assist you in the planning of your wedding. Alternatively, you may want to ask the minister to send you a digital copy by email, which is available in PDF.