First of all CONGRATULATIONS! This is an exciting time for you and we at St Peter’s will look forward to joining with you to make it all memorable and meaningful.
If you live in the Parish of St.Peter’s Parkstone or if you worship in the Parish Church you have a right to be married here provided neither of you is divorced and has a former partner still living. Phone or email to make an appointment to begin making the arrangements.
You can find out whether or not you live in this Parish by visiting the main Church of England website and entering your postcode in the “Find your local Church” box on the right hand side. The CofE website is here at Church of England Website.
At the first meeting we’ll take down some basic details, and talk about your relationship and about what Marriage is. We may get to the point of being able to set the date and time of the Wedding at this first interview. The Rector will give you an information sheet containing details about flowers and fees and all sorts of bits and pieces.
Nearer the time of the wedding there will be further meetings at which we shall discuss the music etc and there will be a brief preparation course at which you’ll be able to think a bit about what marriage is all about along with other couples.
Here are some questions you may need answers to at this stage.
What if one of us is divorced?
What if one of us is a foreign national?
What if one of us is not Baptised?
Am I likely to get the date I want?
I’m getting married elsewhere but I live in this Parish and need to have my banns read here.
If You Do Not Live In The Parish
If you don’t actually live in the Parish or worship here you can still get married here if you have a connection with the Church or the Parish.
Here are the Connections which qualify you to be married here. If one of these applies you ring or email to make an appointment.
That one of you:
- has at any time lived in the parish for a period of at least 6 months or
- was baptised in the parish or
- was prepared for confirmation in the parish or
- has at any time regularly gone to normal church services in the parish church for a period of at least 6 months.
That one of your parents, at any time after you were born:
- has lived in the parish for a period of at least 6 months or
- has regularly gone to normal church services in the parish church for a period of at least 6 months
That one of your parents or grandparents:
- was married in the parish
If One Of You Is Divorced.
If your former partner has died since the divorce your divorced status is irrelevant and the rules are the same as if you had not been married before.
If your former partner is still living it’s a bit more complicated.
The Church’s basic position on this is that if you are divorced and your former partner is still living you may not be married in Church. However individual Parish Priests are permitted to allow exceptions to this rule under certain circumstances. Not all Parish Churches permit exceptions but at St.Peter’s we do conduct Weddings where one or both parties is divorced.
If you are in this position and wish to be married in Church the answer is ‘maybe’. You will be asked to come to meet with the Rector on two or three occasions to discuss the circumstances surrounding the break-up of your first marriage and the nature of your new relationship. At the end of these discussions the Rector will decide in consultation with the Bishop whether it’s appropriate to allow an exception in your case. Mostly it is, but sometimes it isn’t.
If you wish to embark on this process phone or email now to make an initial enquiry.
If you don’t wish to go through this process or if you do go through it all and the answer is ‘no’ then we are happy to offer you a service of prayer and dedication following a civil marriage. In this case, you would go to a Register Office to get married and then come to Church as husband and wife to dedicate your marriage to God and to pray for his blessing. As long as you live in the Parish this is offered to you without any question and going through the above ‘remarriage’ process would not lead to withdrawal of this offer.
If One Of You Is A Foreign National.
Being foreign is not in itself any bar to being married in Church. If you are a national of a country within the European Economic Area (that’s the EU plus a few other countries) you can follow the usual processes. If you are from anywhere else you will need to get a Superintendent Registrar’s Certificate. The Rector will explain how this works when you meet him.
If One Of You Is Not Baptised.
If you qualify to be married in the Parish you may be married in the Parish Church whether you are Baptised or not.
Am I Likely To Get The Date I Want?
Yes. We don’t get many Weddings. It would be very unlucky if we were already fully booked on that day. However there are other events which take place and which mean that we can’t have any Weddings on a particular day. Again, these are not that frequent.
I’m Getting Married Elsewhere And Need To Have My Banns Read Here…
Please phone or email to speak to our Parish administrator, Caroline Wehlau and she will sort it all out for you. She’ll ask you to complete a form and give her a stamped self addressed envelope and the fee. We usually call Banns here so that they finish a couple of months before the Wedding. Once they’re done we’ll us the envelope to send you the certificate. You should then take it to the Church where you’re getting married.
Bookings for weddings are taken through the Rector, Fr Michael Camp. To send an enquiry, either send an email via the form below or contact our church office on 01202 749085.