Sharing the pulpit?

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by Iakobos, Jun 3, 2003.

  1. Iakobos

    Iakobos
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2002
    Messages:
    92
    Likes Received:
    0
    I was at a pastor's meeting today and the following question was posed: If someone approaches you to use your church for a wedding, and the bride and/or groom are not church members (but relations to church members), would you allow it? And more importantly, would you allow someone else to perform the service? And if your church didn't have a policy regarding this, how would you handle it?

    It was a good question, and a fellow pastor is faced with this situation. He's hesitant to allow it, not because of ego, but because he does not know the other pastor, and is concerned about what message might be presented from his church's pulpit.

    Any thoughts?
     
  2. TomVols

    TomVols
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2000
    Messages:
    11,170
    Likes Received:
    0
    First, a church should have a wedding policy for usage of its building and grounds. Second, you should have your own ministerial policy that the church is aware of, even if it means having it in the church minutes.

    Any guest minister must be approved by me. I leave no stone unturned. I'm not going to exclude a man if we have a small difference, but I have no problem excluding someone that would preach something contrary to Scriptures. It is God's church we are shepherds of, so we must protect them.
     
  3. Iakobos

    Iakobos
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2002
    Messages:
    92
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thanks, Tom. My feelings are the same. If you're going to lend your car to someone, you might want to find out if they're a good driver, right? [​IMG]

    Looking forward to any other responses.
     
  4. Ben W

    Ben W
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2002
    Messages:
    8,868
    Likes Received:
    0
    I would say that it is o.k as long as the other Pastor is theologically o.k.

    It can well be that people want a particular minister because he is known to them and a particular building because it is either special to them or there family history, or alternativley it could be building that suits the type of photos they are wanting.

    Considering how people are not keen on marring as much these days, I think that it is very important for churches to encourage marriage over other types of living arrangments, and if yeilding your pulpit helps, then that is good.
     
  5. Dr. Bob

    Dr. Bob
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2000
    Messages:
    29,402
    Likes Received:
    12
    Why wouldn't I? Is this MY church or simply a building that can be used to minister to others in the body of Christ?

    I'm mystified over the possessiveness many feel about their building. We regularly allow non-members to rent the facilities. Rescue Mission (non-denominational) had a special awards service. Weddings on occasion. Funerals on occasion. Rotary Club, too.

    Am I missing something here? We're NOT talking about preaching in the Sunday worship, right?
     
  6. Pastor Larry

    Pastor Larry
    Expand Collapse
    <b>Moderator</b>
    Moderator

    Joined:
    May 4, 2001
    Messages:
    21,763
    Likes Received:
    0
    As for non-members using the church building, the body here does not permit it.

    As for having others perform the ceremony, in some cases I would permit it but there would have to be a good reason and I would do some checking. I would always question why someone wouldn't get married in their own church and by their own pastor.
     
  7. Squire Robertsson

    Squire Robertsson
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2000
    Messages:
    9,633
    Likes Received:
    310
    As we have one of the largest auditoriums and fellowship halls, we regularly host a sister Chinese Chruch's weddings. (They've also shared our baptistry. They came in at 3pm or so on one our Baptismal Sunday. We have our baptisms during the Sunday evening service.)
     
  8. td

    td
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2000
    Messages:
    310
    Likes Received:
    0
    We allow the use of our building to others for some events. They pay a nominal fee for clean-up, etc. A local Mennonite congregation used our sanctuary for a wedding. They are presently meeting at the Lion's Club and it was too small to hold a large wedding.
     
  9. Bartimaeus

    Bartimaeus
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2002
    Messages:
    909
    Likes Received:
    0
    If you didn't have a building would you rent the Local Bar out for Sunday worship?

    Thanks -------Bart
     
  10. wizofoz

    wizofoz
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2003
    Messages:
    376
    Likes Received:
    0
    I don't recall churches being exclusive clubs. I would be hesitant to even consider using a church which holds non members in such contempt.
     
  11. TomVols

    TomVols
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2000
    Messages:
    11,170
    Likes Received:
    0
    wiz, it's not about being a "club". Larry is right. Some localities have made open usage of private facilities a non-existant phenomenon anymore because of pathetic regulations.

    If a person cannot use their own church, there is a problem. Either the seating is inadequate, location a problem, or there's a spiritual-relational matter that needs to be dealt with.

    I have people who come to me because they love our sanctuary and fellowship hall. They have a "marrying Sam" who will do a quicky ceremony and fake the counseling requirements. So all I have to do is "rent" them our facilities, and all is well in Camelot.

    Sorry. Not that easy. Especially when you have couples who will bring alcohol into the sanctuary (yes, I said sanctuary), light up in the sanctuary (yes, I said that) and strew marijuana and beer all over the fellowship hall and dressing areas (yes, I've seen all of these). Nevermind the damage to a structure someone can do.

    Okay, enough of that. I guess you can tell I think we need to be cautious. :eek:
     
  12. Bartimaeus

    Bartimaeus
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2002
    Messages:
    909
    Likes Received:
    0
    Dr Bob,
    I did not mean for my post to sound curt or discourteous, let me answer for myself, I would preach anywhere they would have me but, I couldn't meet just anywhere.

    Thanks --------Bart
     
  13. Ben W

    Ben W
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2002
    Messages:
    8,868
    Likes Received:
    0
    I am not in favour of the idea of churches turning away non members who wish to do what God has made a standard, and be Married rather than be De-Facto.

    If you turn away people who wish to be married, God could well consider that you have facilitated people to live in sin. And Im not sure that God would neccesaraly bless a fellowship that prohibits marriage of people in the community.
     
  14. j_barner2000

    j_barner2000
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2003
    Messages:
    888
    Likes Received:
    0
    This is a tough one.... I think there would be some questions in order, as others said. But as for the question about renting a bar... One of the retired pastors in our church has related to me how his first (he was a church planter in AZ for years) church plant did exactly that. They would arrive at around 7 am on Sunday mornings and clean it up and then hold church meetings. The owner let them use his bar for free as long as they cleaned it before they held services.

    So if I felt that God was calling me to start a church and that was the only place I could meet....
     
  15. Pastor Larry

    Pastor Larry
    Expand Collapse
    <b>Moderator</b>
    Moderator

    Joined:
    May 4, 2001
    Messages:
    21,763
    Likes Received:
    0
    I don't recall churches being exclusive clubs. I would be hesitant to even consider using a church which holds non members in such contempt. </font>[/QUOTE]Who are you talking about???? Who is holding non-members in contempt?? I certainly am not. This seems totally out of place.
     
  16. Pastor Larry

    Pastor Larry
    Expand Collapse
    <b>Moderator</b>
    Moderator

    Joined:
    May 4, 2001
    Messages:
    21,763
    Likes Received:
    0
    If this couple is unsaved, then they are living in sin anyway. This would be a great opportunity for evangelism. If they are saved, then why aren't they getting married in the church where they are faithful members and involved in the ministry? If they are not faithful members involved in the ministry at a local church, why not?

    Another thing to remember is that marrying people is not a job that the NT gives the pastor. That is a job that the state has allowed the pastor to perform. He is not obligated to marry anybody.

    Does anyone else see a troubling trend amongst this group of a devaluation of the believer's commitment to the body?? This is very troubling for me. In a couple of different threads this has come up recently, there seems a majority of people who are willing to tolerate and condone behavior that is outside the teaching of the NT. Why do you all think that this phenomena is occurring?
     
  17. wizofoz

    wizofoz
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2003
    Messages:
    376
    Likes Received:
    0
    Then it's your church who is holding non members in contempt. "If you're not a member of this church, you're not welcome here." That's the message I'm getting.
     
  18. wizofoz

    wizofoz
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2003
    Messages:
    376
    Likes Received:
    0
    Who are you to judge who's saved and who's not saved?

    I don't believe a church should make non members feel that they have to pass some kind of investigation into whether or not they're worthy of the church's compassion.
     
  19. j_barner2000

    j_barner2000
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2003
    Messages:
    888
    Likes Received:
    0
    If a couple wants to be married by me, I will ask questions. I will require them to pray with me and also to sit through some teaching. Ephesians and Song of Solomon come into mind. However, I would be happy to marry anyone who is interested in being joined by God in Holy Wedlock.
     
  20. Pastor Larry

    Pastor Larry
    Expand Collapse
    <b>Moderator</b>
    Moderator

    Joined:
    May 4, 2001
    Messages:
    21,763
    Likes Received:
    0
    Come on wiz ... what are you talking about?? How am I telling non members that they are not welcome in the church?? That has not even been brought up in this conversation. Any person of any spiritual status is welcome in our church at any time. That was not the topic of conversation.

    First, My statement did not say that they were unsaved. I said that they were living in sin. Second, if a couple is living together as a habit and experiencing no conviction, there is no reason to believe that they are saved. We should understand HEb 12 and 1 John to indicate that they are unsaved. Third, we are commanded to judge who is saved and who is not. There are commands in Scripture as well as principles of church membership and church discipline. When you admit someone into membership, you are passing judgment on their salvation. When you discipline them out in obedience to Scripture, you are passing judgment on their spiritual state. Their lifestyles are indicators of their salvation/spiritual state and that is something that Scripture commands us to evaluate.

    I agree absolutely without apology. But that is not the topic of conversation here. If you start a thread on this, you might find some that will disagree. I will not be one of them.
     

Share This Page

Loading...