WEDDINGS AT TLEFC
We are happy for you as you prepare for marriage!
Marriage is a wonderful idea from the mind of God Himself. The ideal marriage completes a man and a woman by making them one. It is designed to reflect the relationship with Jesus Christ and the Church. However, many marriages fall short of the ideal. We at Three Lakes Evangelical Free Church are committed to doing everything we can to help you establish a stable Christian home where Christ is honored.
- Membership or regular attendance at TLEFC (or a similar church) is normally required before the beginning of pre-marital counseling.
- The conducting of weddings is a personal ministry on the part of our pastors. Before planning your ceremony or setting a date, please talk to the pastor whom you would like to conduct your service.
- All weddings conducted on the premises of TLEFC or by any TLEFC Pastor will be subject to the approval of the Senior Pastor.
- Weddings will only be conducted for those who have demonstrated the maturity and compatibility necessary to have a stable relationship with Jesus Christ and with each other.
- Couples who are living together or are sexually active will be asked to separate from each other and maintain a celibate lifestyle until their wedding. (Heb13:4)
- The pastor will not knowingly conduct a wedding between a Christian and a non-Christian. (1Cor6:14-18)
- A divorced person(s) wishing to be married must give sufficient information to the pastor to determine that the divorce was either prior to Christian conversion or justified on the ground of adultery or desertion according to the Bible. (Matt5:31, 1Cor7:12-16, Matt19:1-9, 2Cor5:17).
- Please refer to our Statement on Marriage and Human Sexuality in the church by-laws regarding same-sex relationships.
- Questions related to the above may be directed to the pastor, and requests for exceptions must be approved by the elders at TLEFC.
- TLEFC Pastors take pre-marital counseling very seriously because they want your marriage to succeed. Often, more time is spent preparing for the wedding than for the marriage. Our Pastors are delighted to perform your wedding but their passion is for the success of your marriage.
- For this reason, weddings will normally be conducted only after at least 3 months of pre-marital counseling (six-eight sessions), the content of which will be proposed by the pastor conducting the ceremony.
- Pre-marital counseling is given without cost, except for the materials involved. It is a labor of love on the part of our pastors.
- Couples will be expected to make steady progress at their counseling for wedding plans to continue.
Costs and Securing a Wedding Date
- First, speak with the Pastor performing the ceremony and agree on a date.
- Then turn in the Facility Request Form at your earliest convenience. This will secure your wedding date on the church calendar.
- The total cost for a wedding at TLEFC is $700, which includes the help of our wedding coordinator as well as audio/visual technicians, pastoral, and custodial fees. The building will be cleaned both before and after your ceremony by our church custodian.
- The payment schedule is as follows. Please pay $200 when you turn in the Facility Request Form. Please pay the remaining $500 at least 3 months prior to the date of your wedding.
- $200.00 will be refunded to you after the wedding is complete, dependent on the condition in which you leave the building.
- In the event of a cancellation, your payment, less $50, will be returned to you.
- Premarital counseling materials – These vary in cost. You will be paying the TLEFC for these items as they are needed.
The marriage license should be purchased by the couple. Check the current laws of your county and state well in advance of the wedding date to make sure you understand where and when the license must be purchased. The officiating pastor will talk with you regarding the best time to sign it.
The church building will normally be closed 30 minutes after the rehearsal and one hour after the wedding ceremony or reception.
Ceremonies or receptions held on Friday must be completed by midnight. Ceremonies or receptions held on Saturday must be completed by 7PM to allow for cleaning and setup for Sunday.
Clean up of dressing rooms and all “messy” areas should be done before leaving the building.
The church is not responsible for any items left behind. We suggest that you put someone in charge of returning all rented equipment, collecting extra programs, cleaning up changing rooms, gathering candles etc.
Birdseed may be thrown and bubbles or sparklers may be used outside our building. Please do not use rice, potpourri, confetti, flower petals, etc.
No alcoholic beverages are allowed on TLEFC property.
Smoking is permitted outside the building only.
Symbolism and Theology
- According to Ephesians chapter five, marriage between a man and a woman is to reflect the relationship between Christ and the Church. As you plan your ceremony, think BIG, not in terms of the length of the ceremony but in the depth of it. Many things are communicated through a wedding ceremony both verbally and non-verbally. Ask yourself the following questions: What are we communicating about God in this ceremony? What are we saying about His love, His grace, His plan for our lives and the part He will play in our marriage?
- You will have an opportunity to discuss the above questions and other details about the ceremony during the pre-marital counseling sessions.
- All participants are expected to be at the rehearsal. Please make this requirement known to all your participants when asking them to be in your wedding.
- The rehearsal will last approximately 1 to 1 1/2 hour.
- The time for the rehearsal will be set by the pastor and the couple. Please be prompt. Please do not expect the pastor and wedding coordinator to delay the rehearsal for the sake of the last participant to arrive.
- The pastor will direct the rehearsal with help from the wedding coordinator. Their common goal will be to make sure that the couple being married are pleased with the ceremony. By conducting the rehearsal, they will seek to protect the couple from interference from others. Musician’s rehearsals should be planned for a time other than the rehearsal. They do need to be in attendance for the rehearsal however so they learn their cues, the order of service, etc.
- All fees are due before or at the time of the rehearsal.
The Wedding Ceremony
- The church building will be made available to you three hours before the wedding.
- The wedding coordinator will guide the wedding party to their dressing rooms, orient the photographer to the area and assist with last minute details.
- The seating capacity of our worship center for a wedding is approximately 250.
- TLEFC owns a variety of items which you may want to use in your ceremony. The Wedding Coordinator will help you with this. The use of candles is acceptable at TLEFC.
Receptions and Property
- The TLEFC fellowship hall tables, chairs and the kitchen are available for your use for receptions. Paper supplies, including kitchen supplies, should be supplied by the couple.
- The (carpeted) TLEFC fellowship hall (downstairs) is not conducive to dances. It seats approximately 100 people comfortably.
- All receptions and reception activities, on or off-site, are to be God-honoring and family friendly (G-rated) as much as possible.
- Please note that our kitchen facility has been designed for catering purposes only.
The Wedding Coordinator
- During your pre-marital process, a TLEFC wedding coordinator will contact you to set up a meeting. At your initial meeting you will be able to get started and schedule future consultations if needed.
- The coordinator will assist you in planning your wedding. She will be your main resource and contact person at the church.
- We know that some couples may have many details worked out ahead of time while others will require much more direction and assistance. Your coordinator will give you as much or as little help as you require.
Possible Expenses To Be Aware Of
- Musicians (suggested donations)
- Major accompanist - $150.00
- Minor accompanist - $75.00
- Soloists (one or two songs) - $75.00
- Each additional song add - $15.00
- Any travel or other expenses for pastor and musicians.