GUIDELINES FOR WEDDINGS
*Please keep in mind! When planning that special event — wedding or baptism, please check with the Church office and/or the Parish Priest FIRST. Before you book a hall or make reservations at a restaurant, it is imperative that you make sure the Priest and the Church are available for performing the sacrament.
- A date shall be set for the Solemnization of Holy Matrimony with joint consultation with the Parish Priest. By canon law, no marriage may take place Sunday morning nor any time during Lent or Holy Week.
- All marriages are to follow the Canons of the Armenian Apostolic Orthodox Church and the laws of the State of New York. It is the responsibility of the parties to carry out the requirements of the State and to present a VALID LICENSE prior to the service. Canon law will be explained by the Parish Priest.
- Canon law requires instruction in Christian marriage as a preparation for solemnization and the answering of questions relative to the INTENTION of the parties. It is therefore necessary for the bride and groom to meet together with the Parish Priest by appointment for this purpose.
- No marriage can be solemnized in the Church:
A. unless both parties have received baptism and chrismation.
B. where either party has been divorced from a former spouse still living, unless a dispensation has been received from the ecclesiastical authority.
C. where it is the intention that a second religious ceremony shall be in another Church or any other place.
D. any time during Lent or Holy Week.
- Before any Priest other than the Parish Priest is engaged, the Parish Priest must be consulted.
- Rehearsals shall be arranged by appointment with the Parish Priest. Since the solemnization is a religious service, the Parish Priest shall have charge of the rehearsal.
- Any music played in connection with the wedding except that which is called for within the service, must be approved by the Parish Priest.
- Decorations: Liberty to decorate the Church in any part shall be subject to the following conditions:
A. Arrangements must be made with the florist to carry out the work with the cooperation of the Parish Priest or with someone the Priest delegates at an appointed time.
B. No furniture of the Church may be moved from its place.
C. Flowers, plants and candles may be placed on the floor of the Sanctuary and Chancel (with the exception of the Altar steps) in stands or other fit receptacles and in such a manner as not to obscure the Altar.
D. Flowers may be provided for the Altar, care should be taken as to the size of the flower arrangement.
E. Decorations MAY NOT BE NAILED, SCREWED OR TAPED to the furnishings or attached in any manner likely to damage or to be a fire hazard.
F. Decorations which do not meet these requirements will be removed in advance of the service under the direction of the Parish Priest or another person delegated by the Parish Priest.
- Photographs or video may be taken at any time duing the ceremony. Caution should be used by the photographer not to blind the eyes of the Priest, Deacon or any other member of the wedding party. At NO time nor for any reason will the photographer ascend the steps to the Altar or be at the Altar itself.
- A wedding is a public service and no person may be excluded from the Church, except where the invited list approximates the seating capacity and cards of admission have been issued.
- Ushering and any necessary control of traffic shall be arranged by the families involved.
- All donations are the responsibility of the persons involved. The customary donation to the Church is $300 (for church dues-paying members in good standing) or $500 (for non-members). The Deacon is essential to assist at the Sacrament. His donation is generally $75. An honorarium to the priest is at the discretion of the family. Of course, if one is financially unable, all suggested donations may be waived.
- If the family wishes to have the church provide an organist, one may be suggested. Fees and availability will then be between the family and the organist.
Note: One may give more than the suggested fee if he wishes. However, if it is financially prohibitive, please contact the pastor.
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