CONGRATULATIONS ON YOUR ENGAGEMENT!
We know that planning for a wedding can be an exciting, and yet an enormous task for an engaged couple. We thank you for considering Solon United Methodist Church in your wedding plans. You will find below a copy of the church’s policies and regulations regarding weddings. We hope this information will be helpful.
We also make the assumption that when you come to the church for your wedding, you want God to be a part of the wedding service and your marriage. We recognize that you don’t have to be married in a church. Marriages can be performed by a public official in a courtroom, in a mayor’s office or in a number of other public and non-religious places.
But when you come to the church, a wedding becomes more than a mere legal proceeding. A church wedding is a religious service. At Solon United Methodist Church, the wedding service is a Christian worship service above all else. As such, there are some guidelines we follow to ensure the sacredness of the event. In planning for your wedding, please keep these thoughts in mind. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact the pastor.
We also hope that in addition to the plans you are making for your wedding, you are also spending enough time making plans for your married life after the wedding day. We at SUMC want to see you have not only a great and memorable day, but also a fulfilling life together. We believe that making God part of our marriage is an important part of life together, as a couple and as the church. We wish the same for you.
We hope that we can be of help on both counts. If you have any questions or if we can be of any assistance before or after your wedding day, please do not hesitate to call. We are only too happy to be of help.
We offer our facilities to make your wedding as attractive and special as possible. The sanctuary seats approximately 175 guests with rooms available for dressing and preparations. If you are using an aisle runner, you should know that the center sanctuary aisle is about forty feet in length.
The church also has two candelabras, which are available for your use if you wish.
The building is wheelchair accessible. The church building is smoke free.
PASTOR – The pastor of SUMC will officiate at all weddings, guest pastors may assist in the ceremony only. Currently, the presiding pastor is Rev. Cynthia Theobald. The pastor will also set dates and times for premarital counseling sessions with the couple. The usual number of sessions is three or four, depending on the length per session.
WEDDING CEREMONY – The date and time of the wedding should be set as soon as possible. No date will be reserved on the church’s calendar however, until the first meeting of the couple with the pastor. A non-refundable $100 deposit is required before your wedding date is confirmed on the church calendar.
Generally, the wedding service from the United Methodist Book of Worship is used. After consultation with and approval of the pastor, additions can be made to the service to make it more personal. Keep in mind, though, the general outline of the service will be used and that it is a Christian worship service giving glory to God; the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
Because it is a religious service, it ought to be treated as such. It calls for the best behavior of everyone involved in the wedding party. You and your wedding party should be on time for the wedding rehearsal, and be at the church one-half to one hour before the wedding service. For the sake of the service and of the couple, there is to be no alcohol consumed prior to the rehearsal or the wedding. This applies to all persons in the wedding party. It is the responsibility of the couple to notify their participants.
ORGANIST & MUSIC – Our staff musician may be available or can make recommendations. All arrangements must be made directly with the staff musician regarding the music for your service. The church office will provide you with contact information.
Other musicians (singers, instrumentalists, etc.) are welcome to be part of the service, too. You will want to work with the pastor and staff musician as to how to best use their talents.
Since the wedding service is a religious ceremony, all music must be fitting for a worship service. It must be in accordance with Christian standards of faith and practice.
FLOWERS & FURNITURE – The location, amount and arrangement of flowers must be appropriate of a worship service. Chancel furniture may not be moved, removed or covered without permission of the pastor. Flowers may not be pinned or taped to the church furniture. They may be tied with string or attached using rubber bands.
If you are using the candelabra, you may want to tell your florist they are available. But do not feel obligated to use a lot of flowers for the service. The sanctuary itself is a lovely place to have a wedding and a few nice arrangements are usually more than enough to beautify the church. Do not feel you have to leave the church a basket of flowers. It is a thoughtful gesture, but by no means necessary. The church has a regular schedule of delivered flowers for its use in worship.
PHOTOGRAPHY – The use of cameras by professional photographers during the service within the sanctuary is permissible if they remain as unobtrusive as possible. No camera flashes are allowed during the wedding service. Posed photographs may be taken before or after the ceremony. (Suggestion: Do as many of your posed photos before the service as you can. It will make the rest of your day run more smoothly.) Photographs by guests during the ceremony are not to be encouraged. If you are using a bulletin, consider inserting a small paragraph asking your guests not to take flash pictures during your ceremony.
Video photographers must be stationary at the rear of the sanctuary, or unattended on a tripod at the side of the chancel. If there are any questions, please see the pastor.
CANDLES – Candles for the two altar candlesticks are provided by the church. There are two candelabras available you can use. If a wedding/unity candle is to be used, the candle must be provided by the couple as well as two small tapers with which to light it.
BULLETINS – If you would like the church to print bulletins for the wedding ceremony, the information and blank bulletins must be given to the church office manager at least two weeks prior to the wedding.
RICE / BIRDSEED – There is to be NO rice used here on church grounds for weddings. Birdseed is permissible, but must be used only outside. Further, if any posed photographs are to be taken after the service, these must be done before the birdseed is thrown. Otherwise, it gets tracked back into the church and makes a monumental clean-up task.
CLEAN UP – All wedding party belongings must be removed from the church once the bridal party leaves the building.
Your non-refundable deposit will be applied to the total cost of the wedding. The total cost of your wedding is $600 (There is an additional charge of $100 for parties of 150 people or more). This includes the rehearsal and payment for the pastor, staff musician and the custodian. Checks should be made payable to Solon United Methodist Church. Wedding fees need to be paid by the time of the rehearsal.
God bless you in your life together.
Yours in Christian love,
Rev. Cindy Theobald, Pastor