A Sample Marriage Policy
Editor’s note: Read Nick Gatzke’s piece “How Our Church Has Found a Marriage Policy to be Useful” for an introduction to marriage policies.
____________ is happy to participate in instituting Christian marriages for believers in Jesus Christ. This is to be understood as quite different than the civil ceremony of a wedding that is found throughout society. The purpose is of a Christian marriage is glorify God together in reflecting the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the world through the marriage relationship and being an example of faithful obedience as the man and the woman seek to follow God’s will together. Therefore, the requirements for marriage at ______ are as follows:
- Both the man and the woman must meet the spiritual qualifications for church membership. That is, both must have a consistent testimony of living faith in Christ and true conversion. (1 Corinthians 6:14-7:1).
- Both the man and the woman must have lived consistent Christian lives of worship, growth, giving and outreach for at least one year before applying to wed at ______. References from the home church will be required for non-members.
- The couple must have some legitimate connection to ________. Legitimate connections include:
- The man and/or the woman are church members or former members.
- The man and/or the woman have been regular OBC attendees for at least one year.
- The man and/or the woman’s parents are church members or former members.
- The couple must remain sexually abstinent and live separately until marriage.
- The couple must participate in approved pre-marital counseling. Wedding applications should be submitted at least four months in advance to allow time for this.
- Their union must conform to the biblical teaching on divorce and remarriage.
Wedding applications are available in the church office. Couples must complete an application and meet with a pastor or elder before receiving approval for a wedding.
Approval of a wedding application may remain under consideration through the third session of pre- marital counseling. Receiving pre-marital counseling does not guarantee approval for a wedding. Weddings will be “penciled in” on the church schedule until approved. Wedding invitations should not be ordered until approval is received.
Exceptions to this policy may be considered by the Elders at their regular meeting.
________ will not host nor officiate weddings in violation of the Scriptural guidelines for marriage. This is includes but is not limited to the marriage of a homosexual couple and the marriage of a practicing Christian with a non-Christian.
Outside ministers may participate in wedding ceremonies upon church approval.
Non-members who wed at _______ will pay a fee for building use in addition to gratuities.
A couple from another church wishing to use our facility must accompany their application with an official letter from their church leadership explaining the church’s need to use our facility. The couple will need to meet all the above requirements and will also pay an representative to be present and coordinate logistics for the rehearsal and wedding.