Dear Wedding Enquirers,
Congratulations on your decision to get married.
We are glad that you would like your wedding to be conducted in one of the six, beautiful churches of the Hambleden Valley. Please read the following so that we can help you through the processes involved.
Weddings in the Church of England are governed by both Civil and Canon Law, and so we have to be sure that certain procedures are followed as we respond to your request.
First: we have to ascertain whether and how you might be eligible for a wedding in that particular parish. For this, there are now the following Qualifying Criteria, of which you will need to meet at least one:
1) One or both of you lives, or has lived in the parish for at least six months, or:
2) Your parents live, or have lived in the parish for at least six months during your lifetime;
3) One or both of you has been a regular worshipper in the parish for at least six months, or:
4) Your parents have worshipped in the parish for at least six months during your lifetime;
5) One or both of you was baptised or prepared for confirmation in the parish;
6) Your parents or grandparents were married in the parish.
If you do not already meet one or more of these criteria, we would welcome you to attend worship in the Hambleden Valley Churches in order to qualify; but you will have to complete at least six months’ regular attendance (of at least one worship service per month), and then we will be able to call your banns of marriage. You will be given an attendance-log sheet, which must be signed by the churchwarden or one of the sidespeople at the church, and returned to us just prior to the calling of your banns. Calling the banns may take over a month, and must also be read in the parish church(es) where you live. If you want to know which your parish church is, go to www.achurchnearyou.com and search using your postcode.
For details of services taking place, for
attendance or banns,
However, if there is no impediment, but you cannot qualify in any of the above ways, it may be possible to obtain a Common Licence for the wedding from the Diocese of Oxford (the fee is in the order of £200).
Whichever way you may qualify, there needs to be a brief interview with the Rector or Associate Priest, at which we will need to see Birth Certificates, Driving Licences/Passports and Recent Utility Bills.
If either of you has had a divorce, its circumstances and effects must be discussed in confidence, and the decree absolute must be seen as well. There are pastoral criteria for allowing remarriage.
PLEASE NOTE: If either of you does not have E.U. nationality/passport, the wedding can only take place after qualifying criteria have been established, and then you must obtain either a Special Licence, or a Superintendent Registrar’s Certificate, which could take a further 70 days.
We are very conscious that a wedding takes a huge amount of planning and organisation, not least in preparing for the Church service itself. We have decades of experience here, and we look forward to working with you in those preparations, and are happy to answer your enquiries.
For this purpose, we organise two or more Wedding Preparation Days each year, and you will be invited to one of these. These events are invaluable in the process of preparing your wedding, and of preparing yourselves for marriage. They offer clarification of many issues, the chance to meet and chat with other wedding couples, and a rare opportunity to relax and reflect on the future. We do strongly recommend that you join us for one of these greatly appreciated days.
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PLEASE NOTE: ALL ARRANGEMENTS AT THIS STAGE ARE PROVISIONAL ON THE NECESSARY CRITERIA BEING MET AND THERE BEING NO IMPEDIMENT BEING FOUND IN CIVIL OR CANON LAW.
To find out more about our availability, and how to proceed, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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