Congratulations on your decision to get married. We are delighted if you are planning to come to our church for your Marriage service. We will do all that we can to make sure that the occasion is a happy and meaningful one for you.

We will also pray that God will bless your marriage making it rich in mutual love, honour and comfort and that you may know his help to fulfil the promises that you will make to one another.

As you look forward to your Wedding Day there are so many things that you need to sort out. If there is anything that you need help with as you think about the service do please ask. We will also do as much as we can to help you think through the bigger issues of what marriage means.

Here are some things you need to know:

There are some dates in the church calendar when marriage services cannot take place: from 12th December until Christmas; during Lent; from 1st to 15th August; on 5th and 6th January; on 29th August and on 14th September. The marriage can only take place with the formal permission of the Archbishop in the form of an episcopal marriage permit. When you book your wedding date the priest will explain the process of application to the Archdiocese for the required permit. The application should preferably be made at least 6 months before the wedding date.

Photographs are allowed during the service with the agreement of the person conducting the wedding. Please note that Photographers must not cross the front of the church during the wedding service or be obtrusive during the ceremony.

Playing music — whether live or recorded — inside the church is not permitted.

For Orthodox Christians each candidate will require a certificate of no impediment. This is usually obtained from the parish of the candidate’s baptism. In the case of a second marriage in the Orthodox Church the person concerned should produce a ecclesiastical certificate of divorce, or if a widow/er, a death certificate. The two persons standing as witnesses to the man and woman being married must be Orthodox Christians.

It is normally possible for an Orthodox Christian to be married in the Orthodox church with a Christian of another denomination who is baptised in the name of the Holy Trinity.

However, it is not possible for the sacrament of marriage to take place for an Orthodox Christian with a person of no faith or of a faith other than Christian. Baptismal certificates will need to be produced for Christians of other denominations.

A Note to Non-Orthodox

Conversion to the Orthodox faith is not a requirement. If you desire to become an Eastern Orthodox Christian, this matter needs to be addressed with the parish priest separately and apart from the wedding. It should not be a conversion for the sake of convenience, nor should it be made to make someone happy. The decision should be made following thought and prayer and out of a true desire to become an Eastern Orthodox Christian.