Your BIG Day...
Congratulations on your decision to get married.
We are delighted that you are thinking of being married in St Jude's United Church. We will do all that we can to make sure that the occasion is a happy and meaningful one for you.
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 (with lots more information available at the Your Church Wedding site)…
Preparing For Your Wedding
Establishing Your Connection With The Parish
You may apply to be married at St.Jude’s United Church if at least one of you lives in the Parish of Englefield Green or regularly worships here.
Alternatively you may apply if either of you has one of the following Qualifying Connections with the Parish under the Marriage Measure 2008:
Was Baptised in the Parish (This does not apply where the Baptism formed part of a combined service of Baptism and confirmation when sponsored by another parish);
Had his or her Confirmation entered in a Church Register book of the Church;
Has at any time had his or her 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.
Or, a Parent of that person 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.
Or, a Parent or Grandparent of that person was married in the Parish.
In all cases above and in all cases involving Church services – i.e. coming to/going to/attending normal church services, Baptisms, Confirmation or Marriage – this applies only to Church of England services.
If you are not sure whether you qualify, please contact us, or visit the church between 2.00pm and 4.00pm on Saturday afternoons.
The 'ABC' of weddings at St. Jude's!
There is a legal requirement that we make sure that there are no objections to your marriage. The usual way to do this is to ‘publish your banns’. This means that your names will be read out at our main Sunday Service for three weeks running on the first three Sundays of the month before your wedding. If one of you lives in another parish, your banns must be published there too. You will need to contact the Vicar there and obtain a certificate from him after their publication. It is important that you bring it to St Jude’s as soon as you have it. The wedding cannot take place without the banns certificate from the other parish, so it is important that this is not overlooked. An ordinary licence, which involves extra cost, is an alternative to having banns published. It achieves the same result as banns and is needed if for example, one partner is living abroad or there is difficulty in calling banns.
St Jude’s United Church doesn’t have a peal of bells.
Please keep confetti outside, on the south side of the church building, and away from the main entrance. Bio-degradable confetti only, please.
We have a sound system, with microphones etc.
Our fees are published here, and on the notice board inside the church.
Please provide and arrange your own flowers. The Churchwardens are usually available to speak to couples after the main service on Sundays, and are happy to offer practical advice and suggestions. Flowers during Advent & Lent: Please note that during Advent (four weeks before Christmas) and Lent (six weeks before Easter), there are no flowers in the church. If you choose wedding flowers at these times you must ensure they are removed before Sunday – thank you.
Hymns / Music
Our organist and choir master is Geoff Chew (firstname.lastname@example.org). Geoff is usually available to speak to couples after the main service on Sundays, so please talk to him about music for your wedding.
The Church Choir is small, and it isn’t usually possible to get a choir together for weddings.
It is also possible to play recorded music through the sound system.
Order of Service
Most couples have a personal order of service booklet printed. Please let us know if you need help with the content and layout, as we have many examples.
There is limited parking around the church. However, it is possible to park in the Medical Centre car park (at the end of Englehurst), during the weekend, when the Medical Centre is closed. There are public car parks in Victoria Street (sat nav - TW20 0SE) and St Jude’s Road (sat nav - TW20 0BY), and limited roadside 2 hour parking in Victoria Street, but in St Jude’s Road the restriction is 30 mins only.
An official photographer will be allowed to take photographs of the entrance procession, posed after the registers have been signed, and the newly married couple as they leave the church. Any other photographs during the service will be at the discretion of the Minister taking the service and must be discussed beforehand.
Many local photographers are already familiar with St Jude’s, but it would help us to know who you’ve chosen.
We don’t allow members of the congregation to take their own photographs, as it can become too distracting and detracts from the service. Please note that Photographers must not cross the front of the church during the wedding service or be obtrusive during the ceremony.
After you have booked your wedding the Minister conducting your wedding will need to meet with you both to go through the service, answer any questions you may have and discuss any issues you want to raise.
A Church of England wedding must have at least one reading from the Bible and you can also include other readings or poems. Please discuss readings with your Minister prior to getting your order of service printed. Please ensure that any readings not from the Bible are in keeping with this Christian celebration of your marriage.
It is usual to have a rehearsal about a week before the actual wedding. Please agree a date with your Minister. At the very least, the bride and groom should attend the rehearsal, but it is often helpful if the bridesmaid(s), Best man (men) and whoever is going to be giving away the bride could also attend.
Please note that if one of you has been married before then the very first step is to arrange to discuss your hopes for a church wedding with one of the parish clergy. They will be very supportive but cannot make any guarantees about whether or not a remarriage in church is possible until they meet you both together – thank you.
Your rehearsal will be arranged by the Minister, to take place during the week running up to your wedding. Please allow some time for this. It's helpful to have as many of the people involved in the service come along to the rehearsal - practice makes perfect!
You will need to produce your own service sheets. Do please ask for guidance in this. You will need to provide copies for the choir and clergy as well as your guests!
It is best to have two ushers in church for 30 minutes before the service to guide guests on your behalf and give out hymn books or service sheets. After the service they should collect any books left in the pews and any belongings guests may have left; especially cameras and bags!
Video / DVD Recordings
You must let your Minister and Organist know if you intend to have your wedding recorded. This may involve copyright restrictions – further information can be found in the CCLI Fact File here. No unofficial or unauthorised video recordings can be permitted within the church. Most professional firms will be aware of these arrangements, but there may be occasions when a video recording is planned as a gift by relatives or friends, so please ensure that everyone connected with your wedding or blessing is aware of these details, to avoid disappointment on the day.
Two witnesses are needed to sign the registers. Any two adults present at the service may sign.