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Before the Wedding

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by Salty, Jun 18, 2007.

  1. Salty

    Salty 20,000 Posts Club

    Apr 8, 2003
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    What do you require of the Bride and Groom before the wedding?

    Do you have a SOP which details everything.

    Do you allow the couple to recite their own vows.

    Would you marry a non-Christian couple,...one Christian - 1 non Christian

    Would you preform a wedding for mixed races

    Would you preform a wedding for a couple say 40 years apart in age

    What would you definitely prohibit?

  2. PastorSBC1303

    PastorSBC1303 Active Member

    Aug 21, 2003
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    I require that the bride and groom meet with me for at least 2 hour long sessions, with the understanding that I may require more as we go along.

    I do not marry a Christian to a Non-Christian.

    The rest of the questions just depend upon the situation.
  3. TCGreek

    TCGreek New Member

    Sep 12, 2006
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    I require five 1hr sessions to begin with, more may be required.

    I do not marry a Christian to a non-Christian, and the others I have not been engaged in, but they do not present any scriptural issues, from my understanding.
  4. bobbyd

    bobbyd New Member

    Dec 15, 2004
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    I ask for 3 sessions of up to 2 hours each...usually the first is less than an hour, 2nd is close to 2 hours and the third is about an hour.
    I try to get to know the couple in the first session, give them homework for us to discuss in the 2nd session, etc. And the third is to make sure all of the ducks are in order before the big day.

    i will perform weddings for non-believers and use all 3 sessions to present the Gospel to them. Only once i performed a wedding for a believer/non-believer because i knew the young man and he was very close to making a decision at that time.
  5. Tom Bryant

    Tom Bryant Active Member

    Apr 13, 2006
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    I require 4 - 5 sessions before. The first session is to decide if I can in good conscience marry the couple. I don't marry a non-believer and a believer.

    I have allowed a couple to recite their own vows, but only if I okay them and they are biblically accurate.

    I have married couples of different races. But I've never been faced with a 40 year age difference.
  6. TomVols

    TomVols New Member

    Oct 30, 2000
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    I never have knowingly performed and never will knowingly perform a wedding of a believer and an unbeliever.

    I require that the Bride and Groom meet with me or a reputable counselor for PMC. I do 6 hours, which is more than I used to do thanks to Tennessee requiring PMC unless you want to pay double the licensing fee. Lots of people came out of the woodwork wanting PMC when that happened. Anyway, I still require a one hour session if I do not do the counseling myself. The PMC has to include financial counseling.

    I have no problem, all else being equal, with what you mentioned, based on the circumstances.
  7. rbell

    rbell Active Member

    Jan 16, 2006
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    A minimum of 3 pre-marital counseling sessions...if there are issues, we may go longer than the 90 minutes, or we might add a fourth.

    I have a "smorgasboard" of material--gleaned from (of course) Scripure, Gary Smalley, Dave Ramsey, H. Norman Wright, and others. I also give the Myers-Briggs inventory (with a caveat that it ain't scripture...but it can help show one partner why the other is "weird."

    I hold veto power over any ceremony item, including vows. I'm willing to allow "customization" as long as they don't contradict Scripture, become trite, or become an "inside joke" thing or ramble. Most couples I handle pretty much leave them alone...furthermore, most are too nervous to remember the vows anyway. I've had one wedding where the vows were to be recited. I carried a copy of my "old standby" vows, just in case.

    No, but I'd spend a lot of time chatting with them & telling them why. I'd also work really hard on the non-Christian. I can't be a party to unequal yoking (conjugate that verb, will ya?).

    Sure...already have. (as long as they meet the criteria set up for others here).

    Would you preform a wedding for a couple say 40 years apart in age?

    It would be pretty unusual, unlikely...It would depend on what 40 years to some degree. I'm not marrying Mohammed to an 8 year-old. If they're both quite a bit older...well, 40 is a bit much. I'd have a ton of questions that would have to be answered.

    What would you definitely prohibit?

    • Wax candles in sanctuary.
    • Mothers of brides from offering ANY input WHATSOEVER.
    • Saturday weddings in our sanctuary that begin after 4 p.m. (too late--cleanup never is done cmpletely right...I always end up straightening up on Sunday AM)
    • Aisle runners. They must be designed for those gay Massachusetts weddings.
    • Bridezillas who think this event is the world's most important event...and forget that in a church like ours, there are scores of other events and people scurrying around
    • Weddings over 30-35 minutes. For goodness' sake, let the groom get gone for the honeymoon! Let the unhappy husbands who are there for their wives get home!
    • Small children from remaining onstage. Let little Zeke take the ring & pillow down the aisle, and little Katie throwing the petals...and when they get there, let 'em go sit with mommy (or whoever). You're asking them to do something unnatural (stand still for 20 minutes (ESPECIALLY boys)), in an unnatural setting (dress clothes, quiet, etc...ESPECIALLY boys!). They usually fare poorly, and detract from what should be a God-honoring event.
    But hey, what do I know? As you can tell, some of the above prohibitions are serious, some are silly, and some have no chance. Ever.