Your Wedding At First Parish Church
Warm Greetings and Congratulations on Your Pending Nuptials!
purpose of this wedding page is to assist couples who desire to be
married in the sanctuary of First Parish Congregational Church of Saco.
It is hoped that the following information will provide answers to many
of the questions you may now have. Remaining questions can be answered
during your conferences with the minister who will officiate at your
Why Be Married In The Church?
wedding is a religious ceremony. Traditionally in the Christian
faith the service of marriage has called attention to the fact that it
is a sacred occasion when a couple covenants to spend the remainder of
their lives together, and when they vow publicly to love and cherish
each other as long as both shall live. It is therefore fitting that
marriage be solemnized in the setting of a church and by an authorized
representative of the Christian faith.
soon as you determine that you wish to be married in First Parish
Congregational Church, you should ascertain what dates the church is
available and see what facilities are available for the ceremony itself
and for a reception, if applicable. You will then be required to
complete the Wedding Information Form, and return the form with your $100 non-refundable deposit to the church office. Your wedding date will then be reserved on the official church calendar.
A Minister For Your Wedding
your Marriage Information Form is received with the deposit, the
request will be shared with the pastoral staff, who will consider their
personal availability to determine the officiating minister. The
available minister will then contact you to schedule future meetings.
(Special arrangements may be made when a visiting minister is desired.)
Conferences for Your Wedding
minister who officiates at your wedding will visit with both of you at
least three times between the initial appointment mentioned above and
the rehearsal. Because the service of marriage is an intimate and sacred
one, it is important that you and the minister become well acquainted
and that you have ample opportunity to think through and discuss some of
the deeper meanings of this most significant step in your life.
The Wedding Service
it is hoped that your wedding will be as meaningful as possible, your
personal input and suggestions for the ceremony are invited. As long as
the religious content of the service is preserved, other requests will
be carried out as the couple desire. The officiating minister will share
with you samples of services that would be appropriate.
Music For Your Wedding
is preferred that the church’s organist play for all weddings. You
should arrange for a conference with the organist at least four weeks
before the event to discuss the music to be used in the ceremony. Our
organist can be contacted through the church office at 207-283-3771 x22.
the wedding service is a worship service of the church, the music
chosen for the service should be reflective of a worship setting. Vocal
selections, in particular, should reflect the spiritual view of love and
marriage and express the blessing of God on the spiritual union.
Secular music that stresses solely the emotional aspect of love, apart
from God, is more suitable and effective at the wedding reception.
Vocalists, Instrumentalists, and/or Organist
you desire a vocalist or instrumentalist at your wedding, our Organist
can secure these for you. A wide range of instrumentalists and male and
female vocalists are readily available.
you have a personal choice of vocalists or instrumentalists in mind,
please make certain that he or she understands the church’s policy on
wedding music as previously noted and that music for the service is to
be approved by the Organist. The vocalist or instrumentalist should
provide our organist with the music they plan to present at least two
weeks before the wedding.
organist’s responsibilities include the music conference with the bride
and groom, the preparation of the service music, a run-through with the
soloist(s), if applicable, and the wedding service. There will be an
additional $50.00 fee for every soloist or instrumentalist over two
(this is at the Organist’s discretion).
yours is to be a small wedding attended only by your immediate family, a
rehearsal should be scheduled for a day preceding the actual ceremony.
All members of the wedding party should be present, as should the
parents of the couple. The rehearsal will last approximately forty-five
minutes. Because more than one rehearsal sometimes is scheduled for an
afternoon or evening, the rehearsal must begin at the prescribed time.
church is completely handicapped accessible. If you have any special needs, please let us know.
The Wedding Reception
Fellowship Room of the church offers an ideal site for a wedding
reception. The room will accommodate up to 200 guests. Kitchen
facilities are readily accessible, too. Your caterer needs to coordinate
this through our Administration Committee.
No alcoholic beverages at First Parish Church:
insurance liability reasons, as well as the sacredness of your wedding,
no alcoholic beverages should be consumed on church property at
No rice at First Parish Church:
environmental reasons rice or confetti is not to be thrown following a
wedding. Birdseed or bubbles are now commonly used, but they must not be
brought into the building. They must be handed to guests only after
they have left the building.
soon as you have set the date for your wedding, you will wish to
contact a florist to discuss floral arrangements for the sanctuary.
There are several excellent florists in the area familiar with our
facilities, and who will work closely with you.
your wedding is on a Saturday, and you wish to leave the altar flowers
for use in our Sunday worship, please indicate this on the Marriage
Information Form. The fact that the flowers are from your wedding will
be noted in Sunday’s worship bulletin.
Photographers and Videographers
the wedding ceremony is a sacred one, it should not be interrupted.
Participants, guests, a photographer or videographer taking flash
photographs or moving about and invading the wedding space needs to be
avoided. Therefore, please inform your wedding party, guests,
photographer and videographer that only available light photos are
permitted during the service. These non-flash photos are to be taken
from the rear of the sanctuary or balcony. He or she may take
photographs of the wedding party preparing to enter the sanctuary after
the service. However, the time is not to exceed one hour past the
wedding ceremony. The ushers will be instructed to ask wedding guests
with cameras not to take flash photographs during the service.
Videographers may operate their cameras only from the rear of the
sanctuary or balcony.
First Parish Media Services
First Parish MediaTeam can also video your wedding using our 4 remote-
controlled cameras. Our Cameras can obtain camera angles unavailable to
videographers. Usually we can give you your DVD before you leave the
church. All this at a price lower than you would expect. Internet
Streaming is also available.
The Marriage License
marriage is a civil matter as well as a spiritual one, a marriage
license from the State of Maine must be secured and presented to the
officiating minister before a ceremony can be performed. It is suggested
that you bring the license to the officiating minister as soon as you
have obtained it so you need not worry about it in the busy hours
immediately preceding your wedding day. In Maine, the minister completes
the license and is responsible for returning it to the State. You,
however, will receive from the church a special certificate of marriage.
No wedding ceremony can be performed without presenting a valid
The residence of the bride and the groom determines where the intentions of marriage may be filed:
If both the bride and the groom reside in the State of Maine, in the
same town, then the license must be obtained from their municipal
office. They are free to marry anywhere within the State of Maine.
If both the bride and groom reside in the State of Maine, but in
separate towns, they may file their intentions at EITHER resident town
(they do not have to file in both) and they are free to marry anywhere
within the State of Maine.
If either the bride or the groom resides in the State of Maine, then
they must obtain their license at the municipal office where the
resident lives. They are free to marry anywhere within the State of
If both the bride and groom reside outside of the State of Maine, they
may file their intentions at any municipal office. They are free to
marry anywhere within the State of Maine.
First Parish's Wedding Fees For Non-Members
Note that members of First Parish Church need to speak with the Senior Minister about using the facilities for a wedding.
A non-refundable deposit of $100.00 is due with the submission of the Wedding Information Form.
- Sanctuary and Parlor Rental Fee - $500.00
- Minister's Service Fee - $300.00
- Soloist, Instrumentalist, or Organist Fee - $200.00 (each)
- Additional Rooms - $150.00
- Fellowship Room - $425.00
- Kitchen - $275.00
- Live Streaming or Recording of Wedding from $200.00