Please note the following information related to restrictions around Coronavirus Covid-19:
If you are due to get married in the coming months, we recognise that this may be a time of great concern, given the issues surrounding the ongoing Covid crisis. However, Saint Paul's is currently opening for some public worship which includes marriage services, albeit with continuing restrictions. These include physical distancing and a limit of thirty guests<span class="">.</span> You are welcome to contact us if you wish to know more or book a wedding for the future.
From the Marriage Preface:
Marriage is a gift of God in creation through which husband and wife may know the grace of God. It is given that as man and woman grow together in love and trust, they shall be united with one another in heart, body and mind, as Christ is united with his bride, the Church. The gift of marriage brings husband and wife together in the delight and tenderness of sexual union and joyful commitment to the end of their lives. It is given as the foundation of family life in which children are born and nurtured and in which each member of the family, in good times and in bad, may find strength, companionship and comfort, and grow to maturity in love. Marriage is a way of life made holy by God, and blessed by the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ with those celebrating a wedding at Cana in Galilee. Marriage is a sign of unity and loyalty which all should uphold and honour. It enriches society and strengthens community. No one should enter into it lightly or selfishly but reverently and responsibly in the sight of almighty God.
First of all you need to know that there is usually a residence requirement for marriage in any Anglican Church. Parishioners ie. those living within the parish boundaries or those listed on the church electoral roll have the automatic right to marry at either Saint Paul's (unless divorced*). You are also entitled to be married at one of our churches, even if neither of the above applies, where you have what is called a qualifying connection. These are the following, and need only apply to one of the couple concerned:
Those coming to be married at Saint Paul's will be offered what might be called a "traditional church wedding", which is both spiritually solemn and joyful and within the Christian tradition. Whilst there is some limited scope for requests such as particular music, or songs etc, we are unable to honour requests involving the use of animals, unusual additions to the service or personalised vows.
(i) Marriage is possible in the churches if the person:
• was baptised in the parish, though this does not apply where the baptism originally formed part of a combined service of baptism or confirmation;
• had his or her confirmation entered in a church register book of a church or chapel in the parish;
• has at any time had his or her usual place of residence in the parish for at least 6 months;
• has at any time habitually attended public worship in the parish for at least 6 months;
(ii) Marriage is also possible if a parent of the person wishing to marry has at any time during that person’s lifetime:
• had his or her usual place of residence in the parish for at least 6 months;
• habitually attended public worship in the parish for at least 6 months;
(iii) If a parent or grandparent of the person was married in the parish, this would also count as a qualifying connection.
The references to baptism, confirmation and marriage, and to attending public worship, are all confined to services according to the rites of the Church of England.
Banns are read in the church where the wedding is to take place and in the parishes where each party resides.
Where one or both parties normally reside(s) overseas, the marriage should take place by common or Special Licence. Please speak to the Vicar if this affects you.
*Where one or both of the couple have been in a previous marriage, we are able to offer Blessing and Dedication after Civil Marriage.