These steps must be completed before your wedding date is confirmed with the church:
Scheduling for weddings is on a first-come, first serve basis. Dates for non-members will be set no more than three months in advance.
A church wedding is one of the most important services of worship conducted by the church. The uniting of a man and a woman in the state of marriage should be approached with all seriousness, as well as with joy. It is the desire of this church and its staff that your wedding service and its related activities be carried out with the proper joy, expectancy, and reverence.
The following pages will outline your responsibilities regarding the use of the church, the planning of your service, and other necessary preparations. Please take time to inform all members of your wedding party of the church’s wedding policies and procedures. If you have questions, please ask your assisting minister or call your wedding director.
Advanced planning is critical in all areas of your wedding. The ministers of this church require premarital counseling for their participation. Keep in mind your wedding is a worship service. All parts of the service should be in keeping with the stated purposes of the church.
The wedding ceremony is a worship service and this basic philosophy needs to be present in all the plans and procedures.
Each minister requires couples whose wedding they are performing to meet privately for counseling sessions. Arrangements for these may be made through the appropriate Ministry Assistant. These sessions should take place no later than 2 – 4 weeks before the wedding date.
Our policy requires a wedding director be selected to work closely with the bride in planning, coordinating, and conducting the rehearsal and ceremony. Our wedding directors are trained to lead the rehearsal should the pastor not be able to attend it.
Other ministers not on the church staff may perform wedding ceremonies in the church’s facilities. Our pastor must approve this arrangement and will extend a formal invitation to the guest minister requested.
Each minister has a number of wedding ceremonies which may be used and invites the couple to share their suggestions regarding the ceremony itself.
The minister’s attire for all church weddings will normally be a black robe, unless the bride and groom indicate another preference to him at an earlier date.
The marriage license must be brought to the church office a day or two prior to the wedding. On the day of the wedding, the minister will provide the couple with an appropriate copy of the marriage certificate.
Because it is a sacred occasion, all music used in the service should reflect the worshipful nature of your wedding. All musical text and instrumental music must contribute to this sacred nature. Vocal music should be appropriately placed in the service.
The Worship Arts Pastor is responsible for music used in the church. A list of all music to be used must be approved by him at least six weeks prior to the wedding.
Should outside soloists or keyboard musicians be used, rehearsal times and orientation to the instruments must be approved and coordinated through the Worship Arts office. Musicians need not attend the rehearsal unless the bride feels it is necessary. The bride is responsible for arranging a time for the soloist to rehearse with the accompanist. Musical rehearsals should be done before the wedding rehearsal.
Because of the time required in balancing sound, tape accompaniments are not recommended. Adequate rehearsal must be planned if they are to be used, and the person involved should be compensated for the extra time. This rehearsal should be coordinated through the Worship Arts office.
Early consultations regarding the music are recommended, even if you plan to use a guest soloist and/or organist.
The musician(s) and soloist(s) must be scheduled by the wedding director following the first meeting of the bride and wedding director.
Secular music (music having no reference to God in the text) is only permissible during the wedding reception or other social function outside the wedding ceremony itself.
The bride will be provided with the name/names of our wedding directors and is responsible for arranging an appointment with her to review all details of the service prior to the rehearsal.
The wedding director must be familiar with the wedding policies and facilities of the church. The bride and wedding director are responsible for coordinating with the Facilities Director all use of the building.
The bride and wedding director must draw up the complete placement of the wedding party prior to the rehearsal. This will enable the rehearsal to be conducted efficiently and without wasted time. The wedding director will be responsible for conducting the rehearsal. They are also trained to step in for the pastor if he cannot make it to the rehearsal.
The wedding director is responsible for enforcing the church’s policy of “no smoking”.
A church sound technician is required for all weddings. This must be coordinated through the wedding director and Worship Arts office. The wedding director will supply detailed information about the service to the Worship Arts office. The sound technician is required to attend the rehearsal.
If the wedding is to be recorded by an outside videographer, this must be coordinated through the Worship Arts office in order to better facilitate integration of technology.
Any media (CD’s, DVD’s, etc.) must be supplied on or before rehearsal date.
Videography is permitted from the balcony or rear of the sanctuary only. All cameras must be stationary. A list of qualified video technicians from the church is available from the wedding director. If the wedding is being filmed by an outside videographer, First Baptist equipment cannot be used and cannot be moved. Special arrangements will have to be made through the wedding director for the audio tech to wire for direct sound from our system to their camera.
Pictures made in the sanctuary should be made with as little movement as possible. Members of the congregation or wedding party are requested not to make pictures before or during the ceremony. There is to be no photography from the conclusion of the processional through the end of the ceremony (except for natural light shots by the professional photographer taken discreetly from the balcony or back of the sanctuary with muffled shutter). Photography is distracting to the wedding party and may distract from the spirit of reverence.
No photographs may be taken during vocal selections regardless of the place they occur.
Plan your photography in advance so you will not keep your guests waiting. Candelabra are not to be rearranged for photography. The photographer is asked not to stand on pews or other church furnishings. Your wedding director will coordinate the time for photography to begin.
Protection should be provided from dripping candle wax and moisture from flowers or plants. Use of chased candles is strongly recommended. If candles are used on pews, they must be covered by a globe.
The process of extinguishing all candles is the responsibility of the director as the wedding party departs the sanctuary. All decorations must be removed immediately after the wedding by people the bride has designated to the wedding director. The bride should coordinate the pickup times for the flowers and candles with the florist and make sure the director is aware. Cleaning and repair fees due to damage from the candles and/or flowers will be charged to the wedding party.
No decorations should be affixed to pews or other furnishings without protection. No nails, tacks, screws, etc. should be used. No arrangements may be placed on the organ or piano, nor should supply boxes be set on them during preparation.
The practice of dropping petals in the aisle is permitted only if the flowers are artificial or an isle cloth is used.
If the wedding party requests that the rehearsal dinner and/or reception be held at FMC Mauldin, we require that our Food Service staff is given the first opportunity to provide catering for the event. In case the FBCM Food Service staff cannot support the event, an outside caterer will be permitted upon approval. They must furnish a current business license and certificate of liability.
It is the responsibility of the wedding director to contact our facilities office to secure the custodian for the wedding. The custodian is required to be present to assist with preparing the facilities for the rehearsal and wedding. A work order form should be filled out by the wedding director stating all the set up needs for the rehearsal/wedding, and given to the Facilities Director 2 weeks before the event.
The choir chairs will not be moved; the pulpit can be move with prior approval; the floor monitor can be moved with prior approval; nothing behind the wall on stage can be moved; mic stands can be laid down behind the wall; black cloths can be used to cover equipment behind the wall.
Invitations to weddings will not be made during the Sunday services nor put in the newsletter.
Weddings during the Christmas or Easter seasons (or other church observances where special decorations are used) must use the existing decorations. Coordination must be made by the wedding director with the church staff regarding any possible changes or additions.
You may reserve the following church facilities for your wedding:
A brides and bridesmaids dressing room is located in the lobby of the sanctuary. Dressing for groom and groomsmen is located in C120.
No rice, confetti, bird seed, etc. should be thrown inside any area of the church.
In keeping with the stated policy of the church, no alcoholic beverages will be allowed at any function held in the church.