If you would like to consider having your wedding at Good Shepherd, please fill out the Wedding Information Form. We will contact you to set up an appointment to go over our wedding guidelines.
For Christians marriage is one of the greatest blessings God has given to us from the creation of the world. In Adam and Eve (Genesis 2) we see that God intends marriage to be a life-long union (“one flesh”) of a man and woman. Jesus (Matthew 19) and St. Paul (Ephesians 5) both affirm this in the New Testament. Our goal is to help everyone come to the Biblical teaching of marriage and to realize all the blessings that God intends for His people through the institution of marriage.
Should Both Be Christians?
We cannot ask people to make vows with which they may disagree. Therefore to participate in a Christian wedding both persons should be of the Christian faith.
Should Both Be Lutherans?
We are very sincere about our faith as all Christians should be, and we would love to see as many people as possible confess the Christian faith according to the Lutheran Confessions. We highly recommend that both persons considering marriage participate in Adult Catechsim classes, but we do not necessarily require them to have made a public confession of the Lutheran faith before marriage. The pastors may decline wedding requests doctrinal or practical reasons.
The Christian life in general is the best preparation for marriage. But it is also important that marriage vows be entered into with understanding. We require at least three sessions with the pastor to go over the Biblical meaning of marriage, to consider each person’s specific needs, and to prepare for the wedding service. More sessions may be needed in some cases.
What if we are already living together?
Many couples are choosing to live together before marriage for different reasons. One of the most common reasons is economics. But it is important to remember that according to the Bible, sexual relations are for marriage, and engagement is not the same as marriage. In a world where sex and marriage are going in so many different directions, it is important for us to hold firm to God's word. For that reason we ask couples that are living together to get married as soon as possible in a small, but God honoring ceremony. Then, when they have more time to prepare, we can celebrate the marriage further in a larger ceremony. This is the beginning of a marriage that will continue to follow God's word and be blessed by God.
For members of our church, there is a $150 fee for our wedding coordinator. The fee for our musicians is usually $150, and can increase depending on how much they are needed for extra practices, etc. There is no pastoral fee for members. There is an additional $300 pastoral/building fee for nonmembers.
When Can We Reserve A Date?
A wedding date and rehearsal date may be scheduled when a couple agrees to these guidelines and any special considerations discussed with the pastor.
When Can We Be Married?
Church activities will take precedence. Usually most weddings are held Saturday morning or afternoon up to 3:00 p.m. (We have a worship service at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday evenings which prevents later wedding times.)
Can We Have A Reception at Good Shepherd?
Due to Bible Class setup each weekend and the 5:30 p.m. Saturday evening service, Good Shepherd cannot accomodate wedding receptions at this time.
Are There Any Particular Restrictions Which Must Be Followed?
1. Music, readings, special rituals, etc. used in the wedding service must be approved by the pastor.
2. Pastors of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod do not participate in worship services with pastors who hold to other confessions of faith since this can cause confusion about what the church teaches.
3. Flowers and other decorations must be approved by the pastor or wedding coordinator.
4. No rice or birdseed may be thrown after the wedding.
5. No flash pictures are allowed in the wedding service. Video cameras are allowed.
6. Wedding participants and guests are asked to conduct themselves in a godly manner; no smoking in the church building, no alcohol allowed on the premises.
7. Wedding guests who want to leave their cars overnight should park them in the Lower Lot.
8. Wedding photographers should follow the guidelines below in order not to interrupt the focus of the worship service on God's word.
Wedding Photographer Guidelines