Hi,

So you are thinking of getting married at St John’s – wonderful and congratulations!

On this page we wanted to give you some information and helpful ideas and about how to go about getting married in Lawley church.

Coming along…

St John’s is an attractive church from the outside, set in a semi-rural location on the edge of Telford. If you are thinking of St John’s as a wedding venue, do come along to one of our Sunday services. To be inside the church, during a service, especially if you have never been, helps you to begin to imagine – is this a place where you would like to make these important vows?

Also attending a church service, where we have church members, choir, organist etc, helps to imagine through the music, the sounds, what the wedding day could be like. It helps you to begin to dream about what is possible or not. Also, if you come along, do introduce yourselves and say who you are – it is nice to meet new people!

Where do you live?

This is an important question. Pretty much if you live between the M54 and the Queensway / Ironbridge By Pass then you live with the Central Telford Parish. Central Telford is one big parish and so it means someone living in Lightmoor, Randlay, Brookside, Hollinswood, Dawley, The Rock, Malinslee etc is living within the Parish and so can get married at St John’s. There is an addition to this – if you live in Ketley / Redlake, you may also be living in the Parish as for historical reasons, that part of North Telford is in the Central Telford Parish. It is best if you live in Ketley / Redlake to check and ask if you live in the Parish to make sure.

If you do not live in the above Central Telford, it may still be possible to marry at St John’s, under  something called “Qualifying connection.”  A person, if they have a qualifying connection with the Parish, can get married at St Johns’.

A connection is defined as:

the person applying was baptised at an Anglican church in the Parish;

was confirmed at a Church in the Parish, has lived for at least 6 months in the parish, has attended worship regularly (at least twice a month) at a Church in the Parish.

OR, if the parent of the bride / groom, lived in the Central Telford Parish for at least 6 months, or that parent has attended regularly worship at a church for at least 6months.

OR a connection exists if the parent of grandparent of the bride / groom, was married in Central Telford Parish.

This can all seem a bit complicated! If you feel you do have a qualifying connection, or perhaps you aren’t sure, do arrange a chat with the vicar of St John’s as the minister needs to agree that such a connection exists, before the wedding can be booked.

Divorced..

The Christian message is about new starts and re-starts and a fresh start. The Church of England does give its ministers the freedom to perform a marriage where one or both of the couple have been married before. And many couples where one or both have been married before, have been married at St John’s. As part of the process, the Church of England ask each of its ministers to meet with each couple prior to formally booking a wedding. This is partly  a legal requirement – to see and confirm that the legal documents – decrees absolut – have been performed. But more importantly clergy are asked to have a conversation with the couple about the previous marriage.

Booking!

To book is very simple! You do not book a wedding with St John’s. We ask you to go to Wedding Desk – which is run in Meeting Point House (the building opposite Wilkinsons) near Telford Shopping Centre. This desk is manned every Wednesday evening from 6-7pm, in a room on the first floor. All couples who want to book a wedding at any church in Central Telford, including St John’s, go here to book. The Wedding desk have all the paperwork to hand to say which dates and which times are free at St John’s. And you can book as far ahead as you would like.

However, if you don’t live in the parish, or have been married before, the wedding desk will ask that you meet with the vicar before they can formally book in your wedding into the church diary.

To book, the couple need to both attend, to come with an idea of dates and times (weddings occur on a Saturday at 11am, 1pm, and 3pm), and to bring a £100 deposit. Once paperwork is filled in, date and time agreed, and deposit paid, then the wedding is booked. The final fees for the wedding only need to be paid a month before the wedding – and all monies are paid through wedding desk.

The Wedding desk will inform a couple of the current costs and of extra costs, such as having St John’s choir involved in the wedding, or having a person to video record the whole service (for there is a copyright licence needed to be purchased to allow such recording).

The wedding desk will also sort Banns which will be read in both the local church where the couple live and at St John’s, approximately two months before the wedding. But Wedding desk will confirm exact dates when the couple book.

Preparations?

The vicar meet up with you at the start of the year when you ‘re planning to get married – if you haven’t already met up –  so the couple and the vicar can get to know each other a bit. Then usually, around 2-3 months before the wedding day, the vicar will suggest to meet with the couple to meet and plan the wedding ceremony as well as do some fun (but meaningful!) marriage preparation with the couple. Normally there are two meetings. Also the rehearsal is planned normally for the few days before the wedding but that is always flexible as the vicar and the couple chat when the best rehearsal will be for all concerned.

Also, at any point if a couple wants to chat and meet with the vicar regarding the wedding plans, please do contact the vicar to meet.

A great website run by the Church of England which offers lots of information and ideas about possibilities for a church wedding is

http://www.yourchurchwedding.org/

We look forward to meeting you!

We hope these notes have given you an idea. Basically if anything you are not sure about or you wonder about, do contact us as a church and we will let you know. Best to ask if you have ideas about your special day or worries!

All the best and maybe see you soon!

Advertisements