Two Rivers Pastoral Charge - Celebration of Marriage Policy
Greetings and congratulations from Two Rivers Pastoral Charge, an Affirming Community of Faith of the United Church of Canada. Our pastoral charge includes the churches and congregations of Bayswater-Summerville, Long Reach and Westfield.
As a Christian Church, we believe that all human love is a reflection of God, who is love. We believe that marriage is a covenant where promises are made between two people, witnessed by the community and by God. We believe and we celebrate that marriage is available to all people of every gender and every sexual orientation.
We are pleased that you have chosen to celebrate your marriage in the context of the Christian faith. We hope and pray that you will find love and joy in your life together. The information provided in this letter concerns the policy and expectations of our churches. While we invite you to celebrate your marriage within the church buildings, this policy applies whether the marriage takes place within the church buildings or off-site.
The marriage Service is first of all a Service of Christian Worship and this should be kept in mind when choosing music and readings and when planning the worship. The form and content of the service are subject to final approval by the minister.
The FIRST STEP in arranging a marriage is to consult the Minister regarding the date and the hour you have in mind. Please do not extend invitations or make arrangements regarding the time and date until this has been confirmed with the Minister. The Minister will want to meet with you, both to discuss marriage and to plan your service. All requests for marriage must be approved by Session, the committee responsible for overseeing the spiritual life of the church.
The policy of Two Rivers Pastoral Charge is that the Minister of Two Rivers Pastoral Charge conducts marriages in our churches. Should you wish to have a second Minister or Priest assist in the marriage ceremony, the Minister of Two Rivers Pastoral Charge will invite that person on your behalf.
The maximum seating capacity of our churches is as follows:
Bayswater-Summerville United Church: 65 people
Long Reach United Church: 100 people
Westfield United Church: 175 people
A marriage license must be obtained through Service New Brunswick – you can find locations and hours of Service New Brunswick through their website (www.snb.ca) or by calling 1-888-832-2762. Both of you must be present when you apply for this license, and there is a fee for the license. Please bring the license to the Minister no later than the wedding rehearsal so that the documents can be prepared.
The marriage is a Christian service of worship, and the music is to be appropriate. All music, either vocal or instrumental, must meet the approval of the organist and/or the minister. Different options are available for music – we have organists at Long Reach and Westfield who may be available to play for your wedding; recorded music is also possible; or if you have your own musician, there is a piano and/or organ available at each church.
We realize your day is special, and that it may be necessary to move some of the furnishings within the Church sanctuary to accommodate the service. We ask your consideration in ensuring that whatever has been altered be put back in place immediately following the wedding. If you plan on leaving flowers for Sunday Worship, please notify the minister so that your gift can be recognized. Pew markers are to be attached with masking tape or hung on the end of the pew, and must be removed immediately following the wedding.
Since the marriage is a Christian service of worship, distractions should be kept to a minimum. Photography guidelines will be discussed between the minister, the couple getting married, and the photographer.
Fees and Honorariums
The following fees apply to weddings in any of our churches:
Church (whether on-site or off-site): $200
Minister: $200 if on-site; $250 if off-site
Organist (if the church organist plays): $200
Wedding Host (on-site weddings): $100
The fees and honorariums (cash or cheque) should be placed in envelopes indicating the persons for whom they are intended and paid at the rehearsal or earlier. E-transfers may also be possible – speak to the Minister if this is your preference.
We the Session of the Two Rivers Pastoral Charge want to offer you all the support we can. If there is anything we can do to help in your marriage preparations, or in your life as a married couple, please contact any member of the Session or our minister. If you have any concerns or questions about the policies or information outlined in this letter, please contact us immediately.
May the blessing of God’s love be with you always.
Approved by the Two Rivers Pastoral Charge Session, November 19, 2019.