An Introductory Note...

Marriage is a gift of God, intended for the joy and mutual strength of those who enter it and for the well-being of the whole human family. God created us and blessed humankind with the gifts of companionship, the capacity to love, and the care and nurture of children. Jesus affirmed the covenant of marriage and revealed God’s own self-giving love on the cross. The Holy Spirit helps those who are united in marriage to be living signs of God’s grace, love, and faithful.

Marriage is also a human estate, with vows publicly witnessed. The church in worship surrounds these promises with the gathering of God’s people, the witness of the word of God, and prayers of blessing and intercession.
~Evangelical Lutheran Worship notes on Wedding Services

Download Wedding Guideline Info
Common Questions

What is a Christian Wedding?
A Christian wedding is a worship service. The guest of honor is our Lord God. However, the couple has the blessing to give us the opportunity to worship God and honor God’s love and faithfulness. It is a joyful celebration which points to a Christ-centered lifestyle and lifts up the love between the couple as a specific expression and reflection of God’s love.

Why have a Church Wedding?
A “Church” wedding is not necessarily a Christian wedding. Many people choose to get married in a church for a variety of reasons. However, when a couple is married at OSLC, we strongly encourage them to be active and engaged in the life of this community. This is how we uphold our promise to love, support, and walk with the couple as they grow in faith as children of God.

Couples are encouraged to consider exchanging their vows in the context of a regular weekend worship service, rather than separate from the worshiping community.

Can we get married in a different location?
Yes. In that case, the OSLC facility fees do not apply. However, there will still be a $200 honorarium fee for the pastor. To make arrangements, please speak with the pastor directly. He/she can work with you individually on setting a date that works and negotiating other details that the pastor may be responsible for.

Do we have to be members of OSLC?
No. The costs are the same for members and non-members. While preference for dates is given to members, we do not want couples joining this community in name only, seeking cheaper rates. We do, however, emphasize the importance of a strong faith community for the health of a marriage. We do reserve the right to decline a wedding request, particularly if the values of the couple do not reflect the values of OSLC.

How does the pre-marital counseling work?
OSLC uses a pre-marital inventory called Prepare and Enrich. You will each be sent an e-mail from the P&E website that will allow you to log on and answer questions separately. The questionnaire takes about 45 minutes to complete. In February, all of the couples getting married that year meet for a pre-marital class, let by the Pastor. We discuss the inventory, the wedding service, and marriage. This is an opportunity to connect with others and learn from one another. If further counseling and conversation is indicated, the Pastor will schedule that with the couple.

Each couple is assigned two wedding coordinators who walk with you from the beginning to the end of this process. They will meet with you several times before your big day and work with you on the details of your wedding, scheduling the events surrounding the wedding, answer questions, help you set up, and coordinate things at the church before and after the rehearsal and the service. They will also help you through the details of your reception, should you decide to have that at the church, as well.

The Service

The wedding service is typical for most Lutheran churches. We include prayers over the couple, commitments by the couple and the congregation, vows, blessings, and the Lord’s Prayer.

Included in this brochure are five options for your vows. You may choose one, combine more than one, or write your own. Remember, a vow is a promise. If you write your own, each person should make the same promise to one another. We do not encourage memorization of vows but will help you through what you need to say, when you need to say it.

Holy Communion
Holy Communion is a very faithful and appropriate way in which to allow God’s love to be expressed through the community that is gathered around the couple. OSLC practices an open communion and turns no one away from the Lord’s Table. However, if you anticipate that several attendees may not, based on their own tradition, feel comfortable communing at this service or in this congregation, we do not encourage including this element. No one should feel excluded from the celebration at hand.

There is no provision in the services at OSLC to ‘give the bride away.’ This custom assumes a medieval understanding of women as property.
There is also no occasion in which the Pastor will give the couple ‘permission’ to kiss. We assume that for most couples, that has already taken place without the Pastor’s expressed consent.

The Space

The couple may work with the worship space just before and after the rehearsal, as well as the day of the service in order to decorate the space.

Church Capacity
The Sanctuary holds up to 350 people (not including the balcony). The Chapel is a perfect place for a more intimate setting. The Chapel holds up to 100 people.

Pew Decorations
Bows and flowers may be used to decorate the ends of pews. Please do not use tape. Ribbon, string, or twine is preferred.

The Eucharistic candles for worship always remain on either side of the communion table. In addition, couples have the option to use pew candles and candelabra. Both are a pewter color. It is the couple’s responsibility to purchase the necessary candles and prepare them for use. Hand-held candles are not permitted.
A unity candle (or other ‘unity’ items) may be used. There are preferred places where these items may be placed.

These are the linens used to decorate the lectern and altar. They are seasonal fabrics used for worship and do not change for the wedding.

Photography and Videography

Flash pictures become a distraction from the service. Therefore, we request that NO FLASH PICTURES BE TAKEN DURING THE SERVICE (the service begins once the couple reaches the front of the Sanctuary and the Pastor begins the Invocation). Photographers and Videographers may capture the wedding service, but need to stay stationary and cannot approach the chancel area. The balcony is often a good place for a video set-up.

Formal pictures can be taken before and/or after the service. You are welcome to use the Sanctuary, Atrium, outside areas, and courtyard for pictures. If you take location photos off-site, please make sure that the wedding party is back at the church at least 45 minutes before the service begins. If pictures are taken in the Sanctuary, please make sure they are finished and the equipment is cleaned up at least 45 minutes before the service begins.

If you want to include the Pastor in any formal photographs, please inform him or her ahead of time regarding when and where those pictures will be taken.

It is the responsibility of the couple to supply bulletins or programs for the wedding service. You can receive an outline of the service from the Pastor to help with the bulletin set-up. If the service is in the Sanctuary, OSLC will put together the powerpoint show for the words to hymns and corporate prayers. Additional photos or slideshows are the couple’s responsibility and will be included only at the discretion of the Pastor.

The Music
Not all music is appropriate for worship. You will have an opportunity to meet with a staff musician to help you decide what music fits your wedding service and when it can and should be played.

Included in the price of the wedding is the service of one OSLC-provided musician. Any additional or outside musicians must be contacted by the couple and paid accordingly.

Our worship spaces each house a piano and an organ. Musicians not provided by OSLC must have permission to use the organ, and must meet with the OSLC organist before doing so. Use of both the piano and organ require that the musician wash their hands and refrain from setting anything other than music on the instruments.

Musicians may choose to play non-keyboard music. In that instance, they will need to bring their own instrument/s. If there is concern or question about the appropriateness of the instrument, please contact the Pastor or OSLC musician.

Hymns are a very helpful way to include the congregation of family and friends in the celebration of the service. There are many appropriate hymns of praise, worship, and honor. Please consider including one or two in your service.

There are several occasions during the service for which solo music may be appropriate. Please note the information regarding additional musicians explained above.

Recorded Music
Due to copyright issues, we do not permit the use of pre-recorded music, with the possible exception of accompaniment used for a soloist.

The ‘Little’ Things

Changing Rooms
There are places for the wedding party to change prior to the service and photographs. Please make sure these areas are cleaned up afterwards. OSLC will not be held responsible for any missing items.

Rice, Confetti, Birdseed
These items can cause difficulties in cleaning and may even be a safety hazard on the sidewalks, so please do not distribute these items. Bubbles and bells are much preferred alternatives.

Young children involved in the service are encouraged to sit with their family when the congregation sits down. Older children may remain standing with the wedding party.

Aisle Runners
Aisle runners are not allowed due to safety concerns.

Guest Book and Gift Tables
Tables are provided, as well as table cloths. It is the responsibility of the couple to bring a guest book and pen. It is also up to the couple to provide someone to be in charge of these areas before the service. Wedding coordinators will be present during the service, but it is suggested that cards and gifts be loaded up shortly after the service ends.

It is the responsibility of the couple to provide someone to clean up the changing rooms, load up personal items, and take care of all decorations and service items immediately after the service.

Limos & Buses
If you choose to have a limousine pick you up from the church, they MUST enter from C St., park in front of the east Sanctuary exit, and exit onto Mohawk St.

All scheduling must be approved by the Pastor and the congregational Office Manager.

Non-Saturday Weddings
Couples may consider holding their wedding service on a day other than Saturday. Friday and Sunday weddings may be a better option for you and your loved ones. Please consult with the Pastor regarding this option.

Rehearsals will take place the evening before the wedding. Plan on approximately one hour for the rehearsal. The wedding party is expected to be prompt for the rehearsal, as well as the wedding.

Worship Elements


Vows are promises made between the couple. They are meant to invoke one’s best intentions as you begin your life together. You may choose from the following pre-written vows or mix and match between them. You may write your own vows, as well. This option will require consultation and approval of the Pastor. Two things to keep in mind: 1)make sure they are written as promises, rather than expressions of love; and 2)you will each make the same promises to one another. We do not expect nor encourage you to memorize your vows.

I take you _____________ to be my wife/husband from this day forward, to join with you and share all that is to come, and I promise to be faithful to you until death parts us.

In the name of God, I ______________, take you ________________ to be my wife/husband, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, until we are parted by death. This is my solemn vow.

I take you, _____________, to be my wife/husband, and these things I promise you: I will be faithful to you and honest with you; I will respect, trust, help and care for you; I will share my life with you; I will forgive you as we have been forgiven; and I will try with you to better understand ourselves, the world, and God; through the best and worst of what is to come until death parts us.

I take you, _____________, to be my wife/husband. I promise before God and these witnesses to be your faithful husband/wife, to share with you in plenty and in want, in joy and in sorrow, in sickness and in health, to forgive and strengthen you, and to join with you so that together we may serve God and others as long as we both shall live.

______________, I take you to be my wife/husband from this time onward, to join with you and to share all that is to come, to give and to receive, to speak and to listen, to inspire and to respond, and in all circumstances of our life together to be loyal to you with my whole life and with all my being until death parts us.

Wedding Timeline Countdown

After you’ve said, ‘yes’…
____ Call the church office and consult with the Office Manager regarding the availability of the church. S/he will ask for a $100 deposit and will refer you to the Pastor before the date for your wedding is confirmed. The office manager will also consult with the Director of Worship, Music and Arts and the Lead Wedding Coordinator to have a musician and coordinators assigned to you.

Within the following month…
____ Contact the pastor to confirm the dates of your wedding and rehearsal and make arrangements for the premarital counseling class.

____ Contact Director of Worship, Music, and Arts and Lead Coordinator to confirm dates and get connected with your assigned musician and wedding coordinators.

Four months and counting…
____ Contact your musician to discuss musical options and possibilities. This would also be the time to confirm any outside musicians you wish to bring in.

Three months to go…
____ Connect with your wedding coordinators to work through the details of your service. This information will be passed along to the Pastor.

One month (almost there!)…
____ Meet with the Pastor to finalize the details of the service and review the information in your bulletins or programs.

____ Produce your bulletins, purchase any candles that will be used in the worship space, and finalize any decorations for the worship space. It’s never too early to make sure pew bows fit, candles work, etc.

The Final Week…
____ Meet once more with the Pastor to walk through the service.

____ Bring the marriage license to the church—for the rehearsal, at the latest.

____ The remaining amount of fees will be expected to be paid at this time. Checks should be made out to “Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church.”

The Bottom Line

Pre-marital Counseling Fee $ 50
This includes the cost of the Prepare and Enrich inventory, as well as the cost for the pre-marital class, which covers printed resources and a light catered lunch.

-Pastor $200
- Musician $160
-Wedding Coordinators $250

Custodial Fee $140
This includes your initial $100 deposit required in order to confirm the date of your wedding.
Total $800

Should you choose to use the facility for your reception, the following fees apply:
Fellowship Hall (seats up to 125)
-Without Kitchen $100
-With Kitchen $125
-Custodial Set-up (additional) $ 25

Community Room (seats up to 72)
-Without Kitchenette $ 50
-With Kitchenette $ 75
-Custodial Set-up (additional) $ 25

Schedule of Payment

  • An initial deposit of $100 is required immediately in order to reserve the date for your wedding service.

  • The remainder of the fees are due during the week preceding your wedding (no later than your rehearsal day). Please make checks out to “Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church.”

  • Cancelled weddings: at least 3 months prior to scheduled date are eligible for reimbursement of all but $100 deposit; between 3 months and 1 month prior are eligible for reimbursement of half the charged amount; within 1 month of date are still expected to pay full price.

  • If you need to postpone your wedding, the amount already paid will be put toward new date.

Wedding Application Form

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