Post # 1
I’m not sure the average cost for the church and I’m sure it varies by area. We are getting married in a small church in Boston. They barely do any weddings in fact I was told we are one of the only weddings this year. There are many other larger more popular churches in the city that people use however we wanted to get married at the church we attend. We got a new priest in January and luckily he seemed like a really nice guy and he did great at mass. Very interesting and captivating. So when we met with him and tried talking $$ he said they really didn’t have any information and I should call the following week.
I call, the office manager had no idea the amount and said she would get back to me but in the mean time I should contact the organiist at the church because he will have an additional fee. I scheduled the rehearsal and was told the priest does not attend the rehearsal which I thought was odd but again IDK the norms with this. I contact the organist and he tells me his fee is $350 then the office manager tells me the church fee is $400 so $750 total! Keep in mind we are parishoners of this church and that doesn’t include the marriage license (no idea how much that is yet) and the pre cana class is $175. Now I just get an email saying that the priest is LEAVING and got a new job! They have no clue who the next priest will be! Our wedding is 3 months away!
1-is it odd the preist doesnt attend rehearsal?
2-is it odd they have no set price? I feel like they made up a price of $400.
3-is it odd that I’m paying $350 just to the organist?
4-I read that other bees are paying a stipend for the priest as well? Do you think I’m going to have to pay add’l $??
5-anyone willing to share what they paid and the are they live in?
Post # 3
My church meets in another church’s building. Our service is right before theirs. Our congregation pays them rent every month, so in a small way I feel like it’s “my” church, too.
When we went to meet with the pastor, he told us that he would give us a deal to use the church, since we attend church in the building. The deal? $600!! Whaaaaaat!?
And then when we asked about having coffee for guests, he told us that they would prefer we not do that, but if we REALLY want to, we’d have to pay another $400 to use the kitchen. HA HA HA.
We decided to pay the $600 anyway, since we’re having a short engagement, and I sort of had my heart set on it… but for some reason I thought it would be way, way less than that. I’d thought ~$200. I dunno. Crazy. :}
Post # 4
@bostonbridebee123: oh, and we’re paying a pianist $200 for the ceremony, so I don’t think that $350 for an organist sounds too out of place. Maybe these things are just… expensive.
Post # 5
the organist is pricey, but the rest is nothing. do you have to use that organist? maybe you can find another, more affordable one. we are paying $100 for the paperwork, $500 for the church, $450 for the mandatory “coordinators fee” but she lights the whole place up with candles, it’s beautiful, and whatever we want to give the priest-probably $200. (yes you do have to give your priest additional $). that isnt counting the classes and all that–cant remember what that was. our priest won’t be at rehearsal-that is normal. our priest also just told us he can’t officiate our wedding, so it will be someone we don’t know. i know how fruatrated you must feel!
Post # 6
Yeah, this is one of my biggest frustrations today. I think too many parishes look at all brides like they’re spending thousands of dollars for one day and they can afford to spend $1000 between the piana/organ, priest fees, church fees, marriage document fees, and the Pre-Cana (which is the biggest rip off in my personal opinion). We’re looking at that and only having an immediate family attend (siblings and parents) with no photography and a simple dinner at a restraunt. So about 75% of our budget is the Church, and that irritates me especially since I’d be happy with a courthouse ceremony (my Fiance is the Catholic in our relationship).
Post # 7
Here’s the price list from my church’s website:
- Church – $350 registered parishioner / $500 non parishioner
- Priest/Deacon – Optional (suggested $50 donation)
- Altar Servers (2) – $15 each
The priest was a close family friend, so we gave a $200 donation. We also knew the pianist/choir director, so we were able to save money on that. The price didn’t include the marriage license or engaged encounter retreat that we were required to attend. So the pricing from your church sounds about right to me.
Also, the priest didn’t attend the rehearsal (I don’t think that’s customary, at least where I’m from–Orange County, CA). Instead, the church coordinator was there to tell us what to do and when.
Hope that helps! 🙂
Post # 8
I don’t know about the services, but just for the church itself it is $600 in Yosemite National Park. It is a SUPER cute place and amazing location (check it out http://pinterest.com/pin/156429787027616253/) so I thought it was WAY expensive because of that, but reading PP I am surprised to find out that is not so unusual…
Post # 9
I’ve learned that Chicago churches are very expensive. We ended up going with the most affordable church and it also happens to be the one in mine and my fiance’s future neighborhood.
Organist and singer: $475 (we would like to add an additional musician which will be more)
Priest Stipend $100-200
Wedding Fee: $1,000
Another church we looked into was more expensive and also required us to use a photographer from their approved list of photographers. We felt it was a little crazy that we would have to base our wedding photographer off this list. I have attended catholic grade school and high school. It was a little discerning after paying lots of $$$ all these years to go to catholic school, we would have such a difficult time trying to get married. I don’t understand how some churches can charge higher fees. Its the same sacrament?
Post # 10
Our church is going to be $100 and we plan to give the priest $150.
Post # 11
A friend is getting married and told me that the church here is $500. If they want the organist, they have to pay extra.
Post # 12
1-is it odd the preist doesnt attend rehearsal? He should be there for the actual rehearsal. Our priest was invited to both the rehearsal dinner and the reception. He declined both invitations.
2-is it odd they have no set price? I feel like they made up a price of $400. Our Church fee was $200 with the parishioner discount. The parish, though, hadn’t updated its prices in awhile and we were told that the number of weddings happening there had been drastically dropping in recent years.
3-is it odd that I’m paying $350 just to the organist? We paid $95 for our organist
4-I read that other bees are paying a stipend for the priest as well? Do you think I’m going to have to pay add’l $?? — We gave our priest $150
5-anyone willing to share what they paid and the are they live in? I had a $10K budget. I divided the percentage of my budget evenly between the reception and ceremony. In the end, I only spent about 7K on the entire wedding. My wedding was in a smaller city in Wisconsin.
Post # 13
1. Yes, that’s odd.
2. Most have a suggested minimum donation. Our very small Church in downtown Vancouver has a minimum of $300 to the Parish.
3. Paying the organist is normal, but that seems high to me. I’d ask around and see what’s normal in your area.
4. Yes you should expect to pay a stipend – the minimum at our church is $100, so I’d say $150-$200, given that the church is asking one third more than ours. The priest does not get anything from the donation to the Parish.
5. We also have to pay the altar servers ($25/ea minimum) and for a parking attendant ($50 for two hours, but apparently we can’t go beyond the 2 hours – we have to clarify this one). Don’t know what we’ll be paying the organist yet, if we use an organist.
Post # 14
@bostonbridebee123: If you can’t afford the fees, talk to the parish. If you are having an expensive receptn though, they will almost certainky say that, if you can afford a party, you can afford a contribution to the Church. But, if you’re having a small, inexpensive wedding, and thats all you can affird, No church or priest would turn you away. NOT sure of your situation, but if you genuinely can’t afford it, I’m sure the priest will still marry you.
Post # 15
- Wedding: October 2014 - Squaw Valley
@bostonbridebee123: We are discussing having an out of town wedding and the catholic church near the reception venue we like charges a site fee of $2,200, yikes!