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Church Wedding
A church wedding adds a spiritual dimension to a marriage. The ceremony asks God to support and guide the couple – to give his blessing.
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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 as often as you can. 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 £210. This is made up of a church contribution of £100 (to cover lighting & heating, and a donation to church funds), £60 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.

Other Questions

Q. What music is permissible for a church wedding?

A. It is important to remember that Churches are places which have been dedicated for the worship of God. Due to issues in relation to copyright law the High Kirk is restricted to music in the public domain (music normally over 70 years). Music in the public domain may include traditional and classical music. The minister and organist are happy to guide you in this respect.

Q. Can photos be taken in the church?

A. We permit a photographer to take photos during the wedding, provided that there is no flash photography and that photographs are not taken during hymns, prayers or readings. Please ask your guests to refrain from taking photographs during the service.

Q. Are flowers allowed in the church?

A. The responsibility for putting flowers into the church is your own. Access to the church for this purpose may be obtained by contacting the Church Officer at least three days before the wedding. If you wish the flowers to be left in the Church, we would be delighted to distribute them to the sick and elderly at the discretion of the minister.

Q. Does the church have parking facilities?

A. Car Park facilities are available beside the church (entrance at Glencairn Street). Parking is also available on Schoolwell Street. The wedding cars will normally access the church from Glencairn Street and will park at the main church entrance.

Q. What should I do next?

A. It is important to arrange a date with a minister before making other arrangements. The local registrar should be approached not more than three months, and not later than a month, before the date of the wedding. The intention to be wed will be displayed at the Registrar's Office and, if no objections are lodged, a marriage schedule will be issued, which must be produced at the wedding for signing. This is then returned to the Registrar's Office, within two days, who will then issue the marriage certificate.

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These notes are intended as guidelines for busy and often nervous couples as they prepare for, think about, and enjoy this most important time in their lives.
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As a token of the promises you make, and as a symbol of your marriage, rings are given and received...
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Wedding Music
Not sure what music you would like for your wedding day? Listen to a selection of the most well known pieces here.
Wedding Hymns
Hymns are a traditional part of church weddings and there are so many to choose from. Here you can listen to the most popular hymns for your wedding day.
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Church Wedding Application
Please fill in the Church Wedding Application Form if you are looking to have your wedding at Stevenston High Kirk. You will still need to register your marriage with your local Registrar.
Application Form