Everything you need to know about having your church wedding at Avon Rí

Church WeddingIf you’re looking for a wedding venue in Wicklow, Avon Rí is ideal for your reception. We’re lucky enough to have four beautiful churches nearby in Blessington, so if you wanted to have a traditional wedding and were looking for a reception venue nearby with stunning views and plenty of space to celebrate, we’re the ideal location.

When you organise a traditional church wedding, there are a few things you need to be aware of. This is a rough guide to what to expect, although we advise you to contact your preferred choice directly to confirm the details.

Start planning early

If you’re getting married in a church, there is quite a lot of paperwork that needs to be sorted out beforehand. Each bishop, priest and parish has their own approach and attitude towards wedding ceremonies, which makes it important to arrange a meeting with the parish priest you would like to conduct the ceremony as soon as possible so that you can discuss all your options and get everything arranged.

Choosing a priest

Many parish priests prefer to marry a couple they know, so it’s worth reaching out to the priest of your chosen church early so that you can build a rapport with him. If you have any special requests, it will be up to him to decide whether he wants to accommodate you, so it is a good idea to discuss this early on in your wedding arrangements. If you would like your own priest to conduct the ceremony, this may be possible, but you will need to discuss this with the parish priest to see if he will give you permission to use his church.

Choose a date

You can get married on almost any day you like, although if you would like a Sunday wedding, you may need special permission. You are also not allowed to get married on a religious holiday, such as Good Friday or Christmas Day.

Deal with the legal paperwork

Although you are choosing to have a religious ceremony, you will still need to register your marriage with the state. This means that you will need to confirm your choice church, date and priest. You will need to book an appointment with a Civil Registrar of Marriage at least 3 months before your wedding day so that you can meet all the state requirements for issuing a Marriage Registration Form (MRF). You can find the details of your local registrar at http://www.civilregistrationservice.ie/

Documents

There are certain documents that may be required for a religious wedding ceremony. These are:

  • Your MRF
  • Prenuptial enquiry form
  • Baptismal certificate
  • Confirmation
  • A letter of freedom from each parish you have lived in since 18

If you are having a Catholic service, you will also be required to attend a marriage preparation course and provide your certificate of completion to the priest before the wedding can proceed.

Fees

There is no set fee for getting married in a church. However, there may be an expectation of a financial gift to the church, which can vary. We recommend that you talk about this directly with the church.

Inter-faith marriages

If you are Catholic and are marrying someone non-Catholic, you will need to arrange special dispensation. If you are marrying a Christian of another denomination, the priest will be able to grant this to you. If your fiancé(e) is not baptised, is from another faith, or is atheist, you will need a dispensation of disparity of cult. This can only be arranged through the bishop of the diocese.

If you would like to hold your reception at Avon Rí, these are the closest churches for you to choose from:

Catholic Churches

Church of our Lady Blessington, Main Street, Blessington, County Wicklow, Ireland

Our Lady of Mercy , Crosschapel, Blessington, County Wicklow, Ireland

St. Brigid, Manor Kilbride, Blessington, County Wicklow, Ireland

Church of Ireland

St. Mary’s Church of Ireland, Main Street, Blessington, County Wicklow, Ireland