Can my wedding go ahead?
Yes. Your vicar will want to make your wedding day beautiful and special, as well as safe for you, your guests and church staff. The church may still therefore have some restrictions in place, such as a maximum capacity for that particular church, or some social distancing measures or masks, based on a risk assessment. If you have any worries about the safety of your wedding, talking it all through together with the vicar in advance will help you understand the risks, so you know what to expect, and then agree on the best way forward for your particular wedding.
How have restrictions affected wedding banns?
Many churches have been open for normal worship during pandemic restrictions, but some have been closed. Where a church has been open, banns have continued and they are valid for three months from the date of the final reading. If your church has been closed, or has only been offering online services, then it hasn’t been possible for banns to happen there.
If restrictions have caused disruption to your banns or uncertainty around their validity, your vicar can suggest alternative legal preparations depending on your wedding date.
Can my guests now sing at my wedding?
Congregational singing is now legally permitted in churches, but you will need to check with your particular church whether singing is going ahead when balanced with their own risk assessment. There are many lovely ways to incorporate music into your wedding without congregational singing if necessary, such as performer singing and recordings. Your vicar can advise on this.
If I delay my wedding until later in the year or next year, will things be better?
The picture for how the coronavirus pandemic will unfold over the coming months is still unclear, but everyone remains hopeful that things will be better in the future.
What if I do decide to cancel?
You may want to put your wedding completely on hold until things are much clearer. If you cancel a church wedding, the ceremony legal fees are fully refundable.
This prayer may be helpful as you think about your wedding plans:
Surround us this day with your presence;
Be with us in our disappointments and in our joys,
Help us to be wise as we think about our wedding plans.
Sustain us in our love for one another,
And hold all whom we love in your great love.