- 8 years ago
- Wedding: December 2015
I am a Lutheran pastor, and frequently have strangers as well as lapsed members of the congregation requesting that I perform a wedding service for them. I sure there are many of you on this board that want to get married in church. Now, let me ask you the same two questions I ask the people who approach me, and I want you to think HARD about them:
1) WHY do you want to get married in a real church building by a real pastor? What if you could find a wedding hall which used to be a church, and a justice of the peace who would dress up like a pastor? What would be the difference?
2) Given the fact you want to get married in the church, WHY aren’t you a member of a Christian community or congregation or parish? If your religious faith is so important to you that you want to make a solemn commitment to your spouse before God, why don’t you attned church, and participate the life of the congregation?
Girls and Boys—-the “church” is not a building. The “Church” is the collection of God’s people who have passed through the waters of baptism. At our baptisms, we made commitments to live the Christian way of life. It’s true that the Christian way of life involves more than going to church, BUT going to church is essential. You can be a member of a church without being a disciple of Christ, but you can’t be a disciple of Christ without being an ACTIVE member of a church.
Consider these things, the next time you call up a priest or pastor who has never heard of you before, or hasn’t seen you since you were baptized at the age of two months.
Get to church. Hear the Word of God proclaimed! Receive the sacraments! Encounter Christ in the midst of the Christian community. Find your unique vocation as a Christian, and follow it.
THe Church is not a stage, and the pastor is not an actor. But, the Church can be a wonderful home, and the pastor can help you grow in imitation of Christ.
So before you go back to calculating how many guests you are going to invite, and what your “colors” are going to be—-give some serious though to what Christian marriage is. Otherwise, just get married by a jp.