We welcome the possibility of you celebrating your marriage at our church. Below are answers to some Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ).
If you think you would like to take the next step and discuss this further, please call or email our Office. We look forward to meeting you.
Who can marry?
Everyone is welcome. You do not need to be an Anglican although the church expects that at least one of you is a baptised Christian. It is usually possible to be married in the Anglican church after divorce.
Who can marry us?
Only Anglican clergy can preside at marriages in Anglican churches. Usually this is a priest on the parish staff but other Anglican clergy are welcome to celebrate marriages here after notifying the Parish Priest. Clergy of other churches are welcome to help in an Anglican marriage service by preaching or leading the prayers.
Who cannot marry?
Subsection 23B(1) of the Marriage Act sets out the grounds on which a marriage may be invalid. They are:
- either of the parties is, at the time of the marriage, lawfully married to some other person
- the parties are within a prohibited relationship
- by reason of section 48 of the Marriage Act the marriage is not valid
- the consent of either of the parties is not a real consent because it was obtained by duress or fraud, a party was mistaken as to the identity of the other party or as to the nature of the ceremony performed, or that a party is mentally incapable of understanding the nature and effect of the marriage ceremony
- either of the parties is not of marriageable age
What if one of us is divorced?
You cannot marry if you are married already. So you must be free under Australian law – that is, your divorce decree must already be absolute. To be married in church you need the permission of the Archbishop of Perth. Bring your divorce papers with you to the initial meeting with the Parish Priest who will discuss this further with you.
What documents do we need?
You must produce full birth certificates for both of you, and evidence of baptism for one or both, together with divorce papers or a death certificate where necessary if you were previously married.
What is the Notice of Marriage?
The Notice of Intended Marriage is a legal document and comes into force once it is completed and signed by you both at least a month before you marry.
What will it cost?
St Mark’s School charges $550 to secure a booking for the Chapel. This includes a $200 bond which is usually returned after the wedding. If the Parish Centre is used as well, a donation of $100 is usually made in addition to a $100 bond. No fee is charged for the pastoral ministry of the church offered by the priest before or during the marriage ceremony. Instead, the couple is invited to make a donation, which is usually in the order of $400 to $800. This covers the preparation time and cost of paperwork.
Is any preparation required?
It is essential to prepare for the celebration of your wedding and for your subsequent married life together. Anglicare offer a number of relationship courses and seminars in Perth; enquire about them by phone on 9263 2121 or email them at email@example.com. Alternatively, the priest can lead the couple through marriage preparation, and that is a 12-week session, meeting for an hour every Friday.
Can we make up our own vows?
The Anglican Church has authorised forms of service for marriage set out in its Prayer Books. Within the prescribed forms, you personalise the wedding by choosing special music, Bible readings and prayers.
Can we take photographs?
Photographers are welcome but must observe our guidelines. Video cameras are permitted if they operate on a tripod from a single vantage point. The video operator is responsible to obtain any copyright permissions. No floodlighting is permitted. We prefer that flash is not used—it can distract you and the priest.
Who prints the order of service?
You are responsible for the printing of the service booklet. The Parish Priest will help you prepare a master that can be copied and will give you samples from previous weddings.
When can we marry?
No weddings may be conducted close to Christmas or Easter. There may also be restrictions on some days due to Christian feasts. Please check with the Parish Office. There are limitations on the use of the Chapel during the school week as it may be in use for school events.
Can you supply flowers?
Flowers cannot be organised by the Parish. You are welcome to make arrangements with your own florist but you will need to remove the flowers from the chapel after the service.
Can we use confetti?
Confetti in any form – paper, rose petals, or rice, is not permitted under any circumstances in or around the church precinct. It Is too difficult to clean up.
When is the rehearsal held?
A full rehearsal for everyone in your wedding party is usually held in the week before the marriage at a time convenient to you and the priest. Book the Chapel with the School Office.
What do we do next?
If you would like to find out more, please call or email the Parish to make an appointment to see the Parish Priest. If you have your own priest for the ceremony, you need to book the Chapel with the School.
A spiritual journey together
Marriage in church is not just a legal ceremony. It is an occasion for celebrating the wonderful gift of love that God so freely gives us. Spurred on by the hope that is given in Christ Jesus, our prayer for you is that your life together is enriched by God’s love and immersed in the joy and peace of God’s Spirit.
You may like to use this prayer…
God of love and life,
you give the gift of marriage as a symbol
of your amazing and unending love for us all:
as we prepare for our lifelong union together,
enrich our lives,
draw us into a unity of love and service,
and fill our days with joy and peace. Amen.