Your Wedding at First Church
The wedding in a church is primarily a worship service. It is a celebration of the Gospel; a sacred rite in which two persons and a community of believers commit a marriage to God.
A church wedding is far more than a contractual agreement with two people who simply "want to get married." It is for those who desire to dedicate their marriage to God, complete with a commitment to, and membership in, God's church. The couple should understand that the community of faith is a place for growing in the responsibility and in the blessing of being a child of God. Those seeking to be married in a United Methodist Church by a pastor are asking for a Christian ceremony and are expressing their intention that the wedding service bonds them to the Christian community of which they plan to be a part after their wedding.
Since the marriage ritual of the church declares a relationship to God as well as to each other, the goal is to offer the couple the opportunity to share their commitment to God and to articulate their understanding of the action of God in their lives. Without this spiritual dimension of the marriage, the wedding is only a contractual agreement with each other, and no more than a civil ceremony to be performed by a judge, mayor or other civil authority.
It is the assumption of the pastors of this church that couples requesting a wedding will want to think through these rudimentary understandings of the Christian faith as they desire to commit their marriage to God. These understandings and commitments are basic to the Church's marriage ceremony. The pastors welcome and pledge to be open with any couple who approaches their upcoming marriage in this spirit.
Click below to download the booklet of guidelines that have been instituted in order to establish a procedure for scheduling and planning weddings in First United Methodist Church. They make available to wedding parties the accepted customs of this church.