Wedding Policy for Westminster United Church at The Cedars

Thank you for considering Westminster United Church as a location for your wedding.  You and your partner are invited to reflect upon your understanding of this wedding covenant as a relationship entered into by two people, and God, for the living out of their love and promises together.

  1. Services of Christian marriage may be provided for members and adherents of Westminster United Church and as situations so warrant, for those from outside the congregation.  While Westminster will endeavour to be sensitive to other faith traditions when one of the partners is from outside the church, the Ministerial staff of Westminster will lead the service.  If other traditions or clergy are invited to participate, the Westminster Minister will work with them to ensure that ecumenical and interfaith aspects of other faith traditions may be honoured during the Christian service.

  2. Westminster United Church and its Ministers shall not discriminate in the provision of marriage services on the basis of gender or genders, race or physical ability of a couple seeking to be married.

  3. The Minister will require that a minimum of one session of premarital counselling or a marriage preparation course be taken at the couple’s expense as a condition of being married at Westminster.  The Minister has the right to refuse to celebrate a marriage should the Minister judge that either or both parties seeking marriage are not ready for marriage, or would not be sincere in making the vows and promises required within the service.

  4. Following the laws of the Province of Ontario, the Minister will not proceed with the service of marriage when either or both of the parties seeking to be married or their witnesses, appear to have consumed alcohol and/or are impaired by some other substance.  The Minister is not expected to determine whether an impairment actually exists, but only that alcohol or some other substance appears to have been used.

  5. Reading of Banns is not part of the Westminster wedding practice, but if desired, an informal announcement may be made on Sundays preceding the wedding to the Westminster congregation.

  6. No wedding can take place while a final decree of divorce is outstanding.  The couple must obtain and be in possession of a valid marriage licence issued by the Province of Ontario.  This license must be purchased through the local municipality, at least one month prior to the wedding date.

  7. If the couple would like to have the Minister attend the reception following the service, sending a formal invitation as one would for any other guest would be appropriate.

  8. Picture taking and video-taping by guests during the service may cause disruption during the service and should be discussed with the Minister.  An announcement will be made before the service to the assembled guests outlining the guidelines to be followed. Professional photographers and videographers must be discrete and unobtrusive, and must not interrupt the service in any way. The Minister will discuss limits with these service providers before the service.

  9. As Westminster is in an interfaith relationship with Temple Shalom, a Jewish faith community, decorations may not be put up for a Saturday wedding service until after Temple Shalom's Saturday worship is complete. The timing of this will require consultation and booking, and will mean that the decorations themselves should be fairly simple.  Both the decoration and the disassembly must be discussed with the Minister.

  10. No confetti, rice, bird seed etc. are to be used or scattered on Cedars property.

  11. If the service is held at the church, Westminster’s pianist shall have the right of first refusal in the provision of music for all marriage services.  Music to be used is expected to be fitting for a service of worship and must be approved by the pianist and Minister.

  12. The fees for the use of the sanctuary and pianist shall be set by the Church Council.  For couples from families who are members of and/or financially supportive of the Congregation, the fee for the services of the pianist is the only set fee.  The Ministerial staff have the right to set their own fee.

Please contact us through the contact page or call the church office for further information



Last updated April 2013