Persons interested in being married In the Parish of Grand Bay should contact the Priest as soon as possible and at least 3 months before the proposed ceremony. Couples should not make financial commitments or print invitations or invite musicians or other clergy to participate at their ceremony without receiving permission from the Parish Priest.
Anglican liturgy is very exact. While there is every attempt to personalize the liturgy and make the service meaningful and memorable for the couple this cannot be done at the expense of the theological understanding of Christian marriage.
1) A request for marriage should be made to the clergy of St. James at least three months before the proposed wedding date. This should be a moment of celebration for the clergy and for the parish because this couple wishes to include God and the church in one of the most important acts of their lives. The clergy will inform the couple that they are required to participate in a marriage preparation program and when the couple is resident in the parish, the clergy will assist them with registering for the course. In those places where a formal course is available, participation in the course is preferred over ad hoc preparation provided by the clergy.
2) A couple living away from the host parish will arrange for a marriage preparation course with the assistance of the rector of their home parish. A letter of recommendation from their home parish will be forwarded to the host parish.
3) A couple requesting marriage must meet the civil requirements of the province of Newfoundland and Labrador, and obtain a license from the appropriate authority.
4) Marriages must be solemnized in the presence of two witnesses in addition to the officiating clergy. The Anglican Church of Canada gives no firm direction on the size of wedding parties. Couples, however, are encouraged to respect the size of and sanctity of the sanctuary when planning their wedding.
5) In the Anglican Church of Canada there are two official marriage services to choose from: The Book of Common Prayer, page 563, or The Book of Alternative Services, page 528 or 541. The Rubrics of the liturgy should be followed. Altering or personalizing the vows or other changes outside the Rubrics is not permitted. While the unity candle is a well-understood and theologically sound addition to the wedding ceremony, other additions such as the sand ceremony are not permitted, as innovations like this detract rather then add to the liturgy.
6) Selected scripture readings and hymns are usually chosen by the couple. Music and songs should be selected in consultation with the clergy and organist/musician of the host parish. Music in the context of worship should reflect trust, faith and obedience to the God of love, who is at the center of every healthy relationship.
7) With the change in Canon XXI of the Anglican Church of Canada, marriages are now permitted outside of the church building, in which case the Bishop should be contacted and his approval received before proceeding with preparations for the marriage. The Bishop has provided guidelines to be adhered to.
8) In consultation with the rector of the host parish, another Anglican clergy may officiate, and clergy of any denomination may participate in the marriage ceremony. The rector of the host parish will extend the invitation.
9) Official photographers and videographers, if they are present, are required to speak with the clergy prior to the ceremony. They should be instructed to be respectful of the sacrament and to not draw attention to themselves by frequent movement or instructions to the couple. The congregation should be discouraged from taking photographs after the Procession and before the Recession.