(Closed) How To Find A Church For Wedding Ceremony?

posted 4 years ago in Catholic
Post # 2
893 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

Most Catholic churches are going to be very traditional and not allow you much opportunity to personalize.  In fact, I don’t know any that aren’t that way!  I think your best bet is just to call around to different places and ask.  Or maybe if you said where you’re located there’s someone here who could help.

Post # 4
47203 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

mightyduck17:  What branch is your family church? Is there another church of the same branch nearer your reception?

Have you checked out the Unitarian Church? They welcome everyone and are open to personalization of the ceremony.

Post # 6
1412 posts
Bumble bee

Is your local/family church priest willing to let you do personal vows? If so, can he do the wedding at this other church? 

The church I’m using isn’t one where my priest (uncle) works, but he is able to do the ceremony there no problem (the priest at the church actually sounded relieved- they allow 3 ceremonies/day!). Possibly your priest would use this closer church/allow personal vows?

Post # 9
1450 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2016 - St. John\'s Lutheran Church

Look at any Episcopalian, Lutheran or Presbyterian church. They are all branches of Protestantism – a sect of Christianity that is typically far less strict and traditional than Catholicism. Just Google “Lutheran churches Chicago” and I’m sure there will be dozens of results.

Post # 10
969 posts
Busy bee

mightyduck17:   If you go the route of looking into Lutheran churches as marriedtopizza has recommended, you won’t find what you’re looking for in the LC-MS (Lutheran Church – Missouri Synod).  I’m an LC-MS Lutheran born, baptised, raised, confirmed, and married, and there are strict guidelines for being married within the Church (and I mean “Church” as in the denomination, not “church” as in the building).  Firstly, you *both* must be of the LC-MS faith.  Secondly, many LC-MS churches require membership to be married in their buildings and/or by their pastors.  And finally, the LC-MS also has guidelines that prevent the exchange of “personalized” vows.  However, music does have some leeway.  🙂  I know these things because of my upbringing in the Church and because my father is a retired LC-MS pastor as well.

On the other hand, though, there is the ELCA (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America).  However, even though they are probably more accepting of the things you are looking for for your wedding ceremony, you may find their liberal and often-times non-Biblical beliefs to clash with your Catholic upbringing.  Just so you know.

Sorry, just thought I’d give you a heads-up before you wasted your time going the Lutheran route.  🙂  Though I cannot say from experience and/or with any certainty, I would recommend trying the Presbyterian or Unitarian churches.

ETA:  Why not just ask the priest from your home church to do the service somewhere nuetral, like the same place your reception will be held, for example?  Or do Catholics have rules that prevent weddings from being performed anywhere other than the priest’s church?

Post # 11
1060 posts
Bumble bee

I third the Lutheran church. My sister (christian) and my Brother-In-Law (jewish) had all 3 of their kids baptized there. They were happy to do it. 

(Our church, Orthodox, wouldn’t do it as their father is jewish)

Post # 12
135 posts
Blushing bee

One thing to consider about going outside the Catholic Church for the wedding is how concerned you are with your standing with the Church. Catholics who marry outside the Church without prior dispensation (usually given in cases of illness or when one party is not Catholic) are barred from receiving the Eucharist, and there may be problems if you are planning to baptize children in the Catholic faith (part of baptism prep normally includes getting sacramental records for both parents, including the marriage certificate). Depending on how active you are, this might present a problem. As a pp stated, you probably won’t find a Catholic church that does not require the standard vows (I’m almost 100% that’s a U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops rule), but you may be able to find a parish that is more lenient on music.

Post # 15
7416 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2014

mightyduck17:  By saying “no wonder people bash the Catholic church all the time”, you yourself are bashing them. Kinda ironic, isn’t it?

While there are many beautiful churches of all religions out there, the primary purpose of a church is to serve as a house of worship for the people who believe and follow that religion, not for a picturesque wedding venue for random non-believers.  You don’t have to agree with the teachings of the Catholic church– or any church– but that doesn’t give you any right to complain about what they believe or how strictly they interpret things just because it is inconvenient for your wedding planning.  You’re trying to go into their private, sacred space. It’s not your local Hilton banquet hall.  

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