The Episcopal Church believes that Christian Marriage is when two individuals enter into a life-long union, making vows before God and the Church, and receive the grace and blessing of God to help fulfill their vows. At least one member of the couple must be baptized and have been instructed that Christian marriage is an unconditional, mutual, exclusive, faithful and lifelong commitment intended for the couple’s mutual joy, for the help and comfort given to each other in prosperity and adversity, and when it is God’s will, for the gift and heritage of children and their nurture in the knowledge and love of God. St. Paul’s Episcopal Church uses all of the rites approved for marriage in the Episcopal Church this includes The Celebration and Blessing of a Marriage, The Celebration and Blessing of a Marriage 2, The Witnessing and Blessing of a Marriage, and The Blessing of a Civil Marriage 2. All couples (same-sex or different-sex) that wish to partake in the sacrament of marriage, please talk with the priests of St. Paul’s to learn more.
Planning a Wedding
The first step in planning a wedding at St. Paul’s is to complete the marriage inquiry form and to speak with a member of the clergy. If you are most comfortable speaking with a certain clergyperson, feel free to ask for him or her. If you are not active members of St. Paul’s, you will be asked to make yourselves known to the clergy. Until this contact is made, a wedding date cannot be finalized.
In order to secure a wedding date, please provide the parish office with at least three months’ notice. If one or both parties has been divorced, additional time may be needed. Please do not make a public announcement of the wedding until after your initial meeting with the clergy.
Typically those who choose to get married at St. Paul’s have some current or prior connection to the parish. St. Paul’s expects that it is the intention of the couple to worship with us regularly and become active members of the St. Paul’s community.
Weddings at St. Paul’s take place throughout the year with the following exceptions: Sundays, the season of Lent, or major holidays and holiday weekends such as Christmas, New Year’s, and Easter.
Morning weddings may be scheduled between 10:00 a.m. and noon, and afternoon weddings between 1:00 and 4:00 p.m. No more than two weddings are scheduled on any one day. Rehearsals take place the day before the wedding, no later than 4:00 p.m., and we ask that all taking part in the rehearsal arrive on time.
St. Paul’s policy on prior divorce is consistent with the policies of the Diocese of Virginia and the Canons of the Episcopal Church. At least one year must have elapsed between the final decree of the divorce and the date of petition. Counseling with clergy or some other mutually acceptable person is required. If a person approaches St. Paul’s seeking to marry for their third time or more, additional consultation is our policy. All Episcopal clergy are required to seek permission from the Bishop to solemnize a wedding in the case of prior divorce(s).
Officiant & Liturgy
Weddings at St. Paul’s are officiated by parish clergy. If you would like another duly ordained clergy person to assist, we are happy to invite them upon the approval of the rector.
The matrimonial services conducted at St. Paul’s will conform to the Constitution & Canons of the Episcopal Church; as such only Episcopal marriages performed from the 1979 Book of Common Prayer and the supplemental approved liturgy “The Witnessing and Blessing of a Marriage” and “The Celebration and Blessing of a Marriage 2” (as approved by the General Convention in 2015 for same-sex couples) will be performed.
To plan music for the wedding, please contact our Director of Music, Eric Schnobrick (703) 549-3312 x17 or [email protected] as quickly as possible after confirming your wedding date. He will be available for one music planning session and attendance at the rehearsal as well as playing during the wedding.
Wedding Coordinator & Flowers
Please contact Catherine and Wesley Schmidt by email at [email protected] to coordinate details concerning the rehearsal, ceremony, and flowers.
Photography & Video Equipment
No photographs may be taken by guests during the wedding service, and we ask that phones be placed on airplane mode. Please encourage your guests to adhere to this policy, as the audio system is easily overwhelmed by cell phone activity. This feedback is very disruptive to the ceremony. Your photographer may take one picture with a flash as you leave the church and any silent photographs without flash during the service from the balcony or from the last pew box along the center aisle, provided no members of the congregation are seated there and that their presence is unobtrusive. Stationary video equipment may be used from the balcony, although no extra lighting may be added to the church.
We allow 30 minutes after the service for pictures to be taken in the church.
- $150 - pre-wedding conference
- $1,000 - Altar Guild, Building Use and Music
- Donations or honorariums are at the discretion of the couple.
- The church seats about 400 people, and the chapel seats 26.
- We respectfully ask that members of the wedding party or guests arrive no earlier than 90 minutes before the wedding.
- The clergy do not expect to be invited to social functions in connection with the wedding. If you would like them to attend, however, please issue a written invitation, and they will attend as their schedule permits.
- Parking in front of the church may be reserved from City Hall, room 4130. There is a fee for this service. Please call 703-746-4035 and visit alexandria.gov/parking for further information.
- Paid parking is available at both The Alexandrian hotel and the Courthouse at the corner of South Pitt and King Streets.
- Couples must have a license to marry in Virginia. Information may be obtained at the Circuit Court of Alexandria Clerk’s office located at 520 King St., Room 307. Please call 703-746-4044 and visit alexandria.gov/clerkofcourt for further information.
- St. Paul’s does not permit the throwing of rice, birdseed, or flower petals inside or outside the church.
|Scheduling –Events Coordinator||(703) 549-3312 x65 / [email protected]|
|Music – Eric Schnobrick (Director of Music)||(703) 549-3312 x17 / [email protected]|
|Wedding Coordinator and Flowers – Catherine & Wesley Schmidt||[email protected]|
|Clergy – The Rev. Oran Warder (Rector)
The Rev. Jenni Ovenstone (Senior Associate)
The Rev. Alyse Viggiano (Assistant Rector)
|(703) 549-3312 x18 / [email protected]
(703) 549-3312 x 21
(703) 549-3312 x19 / [email protected]
|Marriage Licenses – 520 King Street, Room 307||(703) 746-4044 / alexandria.gov/clerkofcourt|
|Parking Passes – 301 King Street, Room 4130||(703) 746-4035 / alexandria.gov/parking|