Planning a wedding is a joyful undertaking, and we are delighted that you are interested in being married in Grace Church. The Episcopal Church takes marriage very seriously: it is a sacramental rite in which two people “enter into a life-long union, make their vows before God and the Church, and receive the grace and blessing of God to help them fulfill their vows.” (Book of Common Prayer, p.861)
A wedding is a sacred service, and at Grace Church all weddings are done according to the rite prescribed in the Book of Common Prayer (1979) or the approved Episcopal liturgy for same-sex marriage, with appropriate dignity and order. All marriages are performed by the clergy of Grace Church, occasionally assisted by another member of the clergy (Episcopal, or of another denomination or faith), at the Rector’s discretion. No weddings are permitted at Grace Church during the penitential season of Lent.
It is not necessary to be an Episcopalian to be married at Grace Church, but at least one of the persons must be a baptized Christian. Episcopal canon law requires a minimum of thirty days between the official declaration to the Church of intent to marry and the wedding. If one or both of the persons is divorced, the clergy must obtain the permission of the Bishop of Newark in order to perform the marriage. If there has been more than one divorce for either of the persons, the Bishop may request a personal interview with the couple.
Premarital counseling is required of all couples married at Grace Church. In some cases, the counseling will be done by the clergy person who is to preside at the marriage; in other cases the couple will be referred to the Grace Counseling Center. If the couple do not both reside in the Madison area, counseling elsewhere can be arranged.
Music for the service is chosen by the couple in consultation with the Grace Church organist, who will normally play for all weddings and will arrange for soloists and instrumentalists as desired. Any unusual musical requests must be submitted to the Rector for approval. Non-sacred music should be reserved for the wedding reception.
One of the parish halls may be used for a rehearsal dinner or wedding reception. Arrangements should be made at the time the wedding and rehearsal dates are placed on the church calendar. Contact our parish administrator for rates.