Holy Matrimony is a sacrament …..
A Christian marriage is a time of great joy with a solemn purpose, as two people meet before the altar of God, in the presence of Christian community, to pledge to each other a lifelong union of fidelity and love. Together they seek God’s blessing on their life together. Marriage is an event of primary significance and celebration not just for the individual but for the whole church.
Marriage is a sacrament received by a couple within the context of church community. Christians usually enter into Holy Matrimony within the Christian community where they worship or have a connection.
The Episcopal Church defines what marriage means in the Liturgy for Marriage in the Book of Common Prayer. You may find this description helpful in your planning. Click here to see the Book of Common Prayer on line.
If you have questions about marriage in an Episcopal Church please contact St Paul’s PIB or the Episcopal Church closest to your home. If you are planning to be married you can learn about the traditions, customs and flow of the Episcopal Church services by reviewing St Paul’s Wedding Customary.
St. Paul’s will provide a copy of our Wedding Customary (guide and instructions) If you request one by calling or e-mailing (st.pauls at frontier dot com) our parish office. After reviewing the customary, you may contact us to schedule an initial meeting with our priest. We will not place any weddings on our parish calendar until our priest has personally met with you at least once.
We follow the same basic practices of all Episcopal Churches.
- At least one of the people being married must be baptized (any Christian denomination)
- The couple should be seeking a Christian Marriage and intending to hold their faith as a tenant of their marriage,
- The couple should have a connection with this parish as members, or regular participants in the life and worship of the community when they are on the island. Family members of island residents as well as seasonal employees are also invited to discuss their wedding plans with us.
- Because each couple has a unique situation, it is best to meet with our priest to inquire about preparation for weddings at St. Paul’s at least 6 months before the intended date of the marriage. Preparation can may take from 4+ to 6 months if you have not been married before and several months more if it is not the first marriage or if it is an usual situation.
Our priest will meet with you several occasions prior to the wedding. These sessions are designed to address a number of important issues:
- to give the couple and our priest time to become acquainted
- to allow for a discussion of what hopes the couple have for their life together
- to explore the wisdom handed down to us by many generations of Christians
- and to prepare the Marriage Ceremony.
Couples who are not seeking a Christian service in an Episcopal Church can refer to this page to see other options. St. Paul’s does not rent out or lend the sacred worship space for weddings to be officiated by anyone other than our parish clergy. There may be options to have your officiant co-officiate with St. Paul’s clergy if you meet the expectations outlined above. These special situations must be discussed with St. Paul’s clergy in person before making any plans.