This policy specifies rules for wedding held at the Allison Creek Presbyterian Church (ACPC) facility. The session votes on any change to this policy.
We are pleased you have chosen to be married in the body of Christ, the Church, and pray God’s blessings upon your new relationship.
The Christian wedding service is understood in the context of the worship of God in which two people publicly express the vows of their covenant with each other. It is more than a civil contract or social occasion; the marriage ceremony is a worship experience.
In Baptism, each Christian is claimed in the covenant of God’s faithful love. Marriage is a gift God has given to all humankind for the well-being of the entire human family. Marriage involves a unique commitment between two people, traditionally a man and a woman, to love and support each other for the rest of their lives. The sacrificial love that unites the couple sustains them as faithful and responsible member of the church and the wider community. In civil law, marriage is a contract that recognizes the rights and obligations of the married couple in society. In the Reformed tradition, marriage is also a covenant in which God has an active part, and which the community of faith publicly witnesses and acknowledges. (Book of Order W-4.0601)
Preparing with the Pastor
Contact the pastor and church office with as much advance notice as possible to confirm calendar dates, times, and reservations of church facilities. The pastor requires at least a 3 month notice to perform a wedding ceremony. Church members have priority over non-members.
The pastor’s primary concern is that the couple is prepared to make their vows with understanding and a sense of commitment. Therefore, every couple must meet with the pastor in advance for a period of counseling. The pastor requires the couple to meet with him for at least 6 hours of counseling prior to the wedding date. The pastor requires the couple to take the Prepare/Enrich premarital inventory.
If the pastor is convinced after counseling with the couple that commitment, responsibility, maturity, or Christian understanding are so lacking that the marriage is unwise, the pastor shall assure the couple of the church’s continuing concern for them and not conduct the ceremony. In making this decision, the pastor may seek the counsel of Session (Book of Order W-4.9002b)
The Session, in consultation with the pastor, is responsible for all weddings at ACPC. Under special circumstances, the Session may approve a guest minister to conduct or assist in the service.
A representative of the church will be the wedding liaison for your service. The couple has the responsibility of scheduling a meeting with the wedding liaison at least 30 days prior to the wedding date. The wedding liaison will advise the wedding party of uses of the facilities and guidelines regarding decorating and cleaning of the facility.
All wedding music must be approved by the pastor, who may consult with the Music Educator and Worship Committee Chairperson. The marriage rite is a service of worship, and the music that is selected for the wedding embodies the same standards as those applied for worship. Wedding music should focus upon God and emphasize the faith of the Christian community (Presbyterian Church USA Book of Order) rather than romantic love or sentimentality.
If you choose someone other than the church Music Educator to play for your service, that person will need to contact the pastor for approval of music, understanding of guidelines, and use of facilities.
Additional coordination may be necessary through church wedding liaison as deemed necessary by pastor. Due to the fragile nature of the musical instruments, arrangements must be made for their removal 30 days prior to the service with the wedding liaison.
Decorations and flowers should be planned that will enhance the natural beauty of the sanctuary. Simplicity is encouraged. Any questions of appropriateness should be directed to the wedding liaison at consultation meeting. Flowers are not allowed on the piano or the organ. Decorations should meet all fire regulations. No decorations should be taped to the pews.
Advent decorations may not be removed from sanctuary. If special offerings are in the vestibule and they need to be removed, wedding party must take care in relocating them and replacing them after service.
Decorations may not be taped or fastened to pews with glue or any product that would damage finish.
Decorations should all meet fire code.
No uses of lights or flash will be allowed except for the processional and recessional.
Videotaping/photography of the service will be permitted during the ceremony, if the professional in charge of photography has coordinated with the pastor regarding the placement of the equipment. The equipment will not be permitted to distract from or interfere with the worship service in any way. The photographer is required to contact the pastor before the rehearsal and wedding to discuss the procedures and policy.
The couple is responsible for all fees paid for professional services including the music educator and/or guest soloists or instrumentalists, and the pastor.
The sanctuary, fellowship hall or Family Life Center, dressing rooms, kitchen, and bathrooms are made available for our members’ use at no charge. Members are requested and encouraged to replace all paper products, and church supplies used or make an appropriate donation.
Non-members pay a $150 use of facility fee for use of sanctuary, amphitheater, and bathrooms only or a $400 fee for use of all facilities. Whole facility includes sanctuary, amphitheater, kitchen, Family Life Center/Fellowship Hall, and additional room) for dressing.
A deposit of $75/$150 is required to reserve the facility. Final payment is due before the rehearsal. There is a cleaning fee of $75 for use of sanctuary/amphitheater and bathrooms. There is an additional $75 cleaning fee for use of the Fellowship Hall, gym, and kitchen. Cleaning fee may be waived if wedding party wishes to clean facility themselves. If wedding party is cleaning the facility, all cleaning must be completed within 2 hours of the ceremony or reception. Trash must be taken to the outside trash cans located next to the Family Life Center. Final payment is due before the ceremony.
The sound system in the sanctuary is available for use at a cost of $50 with a sound system operator for rehearsal and wedding. The cost is $25 if you wish to consult with sound system operator and coordinate someone else to operate the system.
Instruments in the sanctuary may be removed (except piano) under the direction of the Music Educator.
The fee for removal is $50.
No alcoholic beverages are permitted in the church building or on the grounds unless served for the Sacrament of Holy Communion.
Rehearsal and Wedding
The wedding party should be prompt for the rehearsal and all members of the wedding party should arrive at the church 45 minutes before the service begins.
Details of the rehearsal are the responsibility of the couple in coordination with the pastor before the rehearsal.
The wedding party may have access to the sanctuary and reception hall 24 hours prior to the wedding. The wedding party is responsible for moving sanctuary furniture for the wedding and returning it to its original position. The pulpit may be removed from the sanctuary for the wedding. However, a communion table and baptismal font must remain in the sanctuary. The communion table may be removed from sanctuary and placed elsewhere in church facility out of sight. The plate and chalice should be placed on the wooden table located between the two stained glass windows. The baptismal font may be moved, but it must be in a location visible to the congregation. The two front pews not bolted to the floor may be removed from the sanctuary for the service.
The required legal documents should be given to the pastor at or before the rehearsal. They are to be signed on the day of the wedding.