St. John's Church
Legal Requirements for Marriage
which if not fulfilled will affect your wedding
1 ONE OF THE PROSPECTIVE MARRIAGE COUPLE MUST RESIDE IN THE PARISH.
- 'Parish' means the Church of England's boundaries not the civil parish boundaries. The boundaries are not the same in a small but legally vital way. If you are unsure which is your parish - Please ask.
If one of the couple does not live in the parish of Higham, they must also, have 'Banns of Marriage' called in the parish in which they reside; no more than three months before and no later than four Sundays before the wedding date.
The parish will charge a fee for calling the banns and for the certificate which you must return to the Priest conducting the Marriage Service no later than the rehearsal.
2 WHERE A COUPLE BOTH RESIDE OUTSIDE THE PARISH BOUNDARIES
They can only marry in S.John's if at least one of them fulfills the following legal conditions:
either (A) they have a Qualifying Connection* to the parish
or (B) they are on the Church's Electoral (membership) Roll.
To join the roll you need the Parish Church Council's (PCC's) approval, after regular worship with us for six months. However Banns still have to be called in the couple's parish(es) of residence. (See Note 1)
3. IF THE LEGAL REQUIREMENTS ARE NOT FULFILLED
and it comes to light, for example if you give false details, we are legally, as well as morally obliged not to allow the wedding to proceed.
4. *QUALIFYING CONNECTION FOR CHURCH MARRIAGES
(i) You (or a parent, during your lifetime) have lived in the parish at some point for six months or more
(ii) A parent (or grandparent) was married in either S.John's or S.Mary's Church.
(iii) You were baptised in (or presented for confirmation by) this parish
(iv) You (or a parent) have been habitual worshipers in this parish for six months or more, recently or in the past.
To review our policy on Marriage, click here
Please read the document regarding videoing weddings