Post # 1
So we’re getting married at a Catholic church and bringing in our own priest, who is a friend of a family friend. He’s traveling about half an hour and doing us a big favor. We’re paying $500 for the church, but I’d like to give the priest a gift as well. I believe a separate monetary gift is common — but how much? And, do any of you have nice ideas about additional, non-money presents we could give him to show our appreciation? I was thinking maybe a nice ballpoint pen or a watch that matches the ones we’re getting for the groomsmen. Ideas?
Post # 3
I would ask his parish secretary for his usual amount. It will give you a good starting point. I used to be a parish secretary and people would always ask what to give him. He hated washing his car so I suggested gift certs to a car wash. He was always getting "things" and he kept everything, but rarely used them.
Post # 4
- Wedding: August 2007 - The Wellington House in Fayetteville, NY
I second asking the parish secretary for a suggestion. She will know him best.
Also, since he is travelling (though not very far) I would maybe add an extra $50-100 to his usual donation.
Post # 5
We are paying the same amount for our church as well, and we will be tipping the priest $100 and also giving him a bottle of Johnny Walker Black (which is pretty cheap at Costco). I am sure they would love the watch too.
When I asked the parish secretary what would be a common donation, she said whatever we felt comfortable giving.
Hope that helps you.
Post # 6
I agree with the previous posters. Another thing you might want to consider is if he is part of an order that holds money in common. If so, the additional donation goes to his community (and him, of course, though maybe more indirectly), which is why the scotch or the watch would be thoughtful as well.
Post # 7
When I asked who to make the check out too I was told it all went to the same place so it didn’t matter, which is why we are making sure to give him something else.
Each church is a little different so make sure to ask. It doesn’t make you look bad!
Post # 8
Catholic priests can keep money if the card directly says, "For your own use."
I don’t know about the pen or watch idea because I am sure that he has plenty of those. I think maybe a gift card to a local coffee place or diner or I like the car wash idea.
Post # 9
I have the same issue. What if you give the priest an American Express Gift Certificate to use. Then he has to use it and he can use it on anything he likes. Right?