The mission of the Pre-Marriage Ministry at Grace Church is to provide each couple with a Biblical and practical foundation for lifelong marriage. The pastors and elders of the church consider pre-marriage preparation a vital part of our vision for effective family ministry. Marriage is a gift from God and the church is committed to helping couples establish a good marriage right from the start. Thus, participation in the Pre-Marriage Class is a required step in getting married by a Grace Church pastor.
The topics covered in the Pre-Marriage class are designed to inspire and equip each couple with a Biblical view of marriage; provide practical insights into the realities of marriage; and to motivate each individual to be the person whom God designed them to be.
Our Pre-Marriage class is limited to 35 couples, allowing for a personal and interactive relationship between the participants and the instructors. Fun and enjoyable, the Pre-Marriage class will help you to learn more about yourself and your fiancé. In the process, your relationship together will grow and deepen.
The class is also recommended for seriously dating couples who want to clarify their relationship. The topics covered will provide a forum to deepen your understanding of your potential fiancé. For more detailed information, visit www.marriagetraining.org.
To register for the Pre-Marriage class go to www.marriagetraining.org.
Coordinators: Russ and Kathy Nelson
Pre-Marriage Class coordinators are Russ and Kathy Nelson. Married 29 years, they are blessed with three children. They are committed to help couples establish a good foundation for marriage. Russ graduated from Wheaton College and has a master's degree from Colorado University. He has had his own tax and counseling business for 28 years. Kathy has a B.A. degree from Denver University and is a licensed social worker. "By probing the feelings, decisions, and dilemmas that often What the Bible Says About Marriage
What the Bible Says About Marriage
The Bible is the best source for understanding God's intentions for your marriage. We can see some of God's basic principles for marriage by looking at the following passages:
Genesis 2:18-24 Marriage is God's idea.
Genesis 24:58-60 Commitment is essential to a successful marriage.
Song of Songs 4:9-10 Romance is important.
Jeremiah 33:10-11 Marriage holds times of great joy.
Malachi 2:14-15 Marriage creates the best environment for raising children.
Matthew 5:32 Unfaithfulness breaks the bond of trust, the foundation of all relationships.
Matthew 19:6 Marriage is permanent.
Romans 7:2-3 Ideally, only death should dissolve marriage.
Ephesians 5:21-33 Marriage is based on the principled practice of love, not feelings.
Ephesians 5:23, 32 Marriage is a living symbol of Christ and the church.
Hebrews 13:4 Marriage is good and honorable.
Marriage Preparation Class
Go to www.marriagetraining.org
FAQs About Getting Married at Grace
Q: Who can be married at Grace?
A: Due to the volume of activities at Grace, we need to limit weddings to couples where at least one of the engaged persons, or his/her parents, is a member or regular attender of Grace Church.
Q: Where can we get married at Grace and when are weddings held?
A: Two areas are available for weddings at Grace - the Worship Center and the Guest Reception Room (which holds approximately 125 people). Wedding ceremonies are usually held on Fridays at 7:00 p.m. and Saturdays at 11:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. No weddings are held on Sundays or holidays.
Q: Can we have our reception at Grace?
A: Grace Church has a fully staffed catering service to serve your reception needs. Contact Linda at 952-224-3064 for scheduling and further information.
Q: Can a Grace Church pastor perform our ceremony off-site?
A: Grace pastors are available to officiate at weddings off-site as their schedules allow.
Q: Can a non-Grace pastor perform our ceremony?
A: Guest pastors are welcome to perform ceremonies at Grace after agreement, by their signature, to the Grace Church Statement of Faith. Out-of-state pastors must have their credentials registered at the Hennepin County Offices. To perform weddings in Minnesota, your out-of-state pastor should write a letter requesting credentials from the State of Minnesota. He should send the letter along with a copy of his ordination certificate to: Director of Licensing, Hennepin County Government Center, 300 South 6th Street - PSL West, Minneapolis, MN 55487-0026
Q: What are the fees for pre-marriage counseling at Grace Church?
A: All couples being married at Grace or by a Grace pastor will need to complete the Prepare® pre-marriage counseling with a Grace pastor. The following counseling fees apply:
- For Grace couples using a Grace pastor:
$35 for the scoring of the Prepare® relationship inventory and no charge for the follow-up counseling.
- For Grace couples using a non-Grace pastor:
$35 for the scoring of the Prepare® relationship inventory and $75 for the follow-up counseling.
- For non-Grace couples who desire pre-marital counseling at Grace Church:
$35 for the scoring of the Prepare® relationship inventory and $150 for the follow-up counseling.
Contact Linda at email@example.com for further clarification on pre-marriage counseling fees.
Q: How long does it take to complete the pre-marriage process?
A: Couples need to complete the pre-marriage class, which is a 12-week course offered in the fall and the spring. For information and registration go to www.marriagetraining.org. Also, you need to allow time for approximately three sessions with your wedding pastor to plan the details of your ceremony and to take the Prepare® relationship inventory. This inventory will help clarify issues unique to your relationship.
Q: Do we have to be engaged to take the pre-marriage class?
A: No. Many couples in the class are seriously dating but not engaged and some couples are recently married.
Q: How do we contact a pastor to officiate at our wedding?
A: Most of the pastors at Grace are available to perform wedding ceremonies. After speaking with the Wedding Director about your preferences, call the church at 952-926-1884 and ask for your preferred pastor's assistant. He/she will determine if the pastor is available on your wedding date and help you to schedule the premarital interview.
Q: Why are there so many policies and steps I have to go through to get married?
A: Our goal at Grace is to prepare couples not only for their wedding, but more importantly, for a lifetime of marriage. We want to equip you with the relational tools and the biblical perspective to help your marriage prosper in Christ.
Q: How do we get started?
A: The first step is to contact Linda Moran at firstname.lastname@example.org or 952-224-3064 to discuss a wedding date and the pastor you would like to perform your ceremony.
Costs and Fees:
- For rehearsals and ceremonies on Fridays and Saturdays: $500 per day
- For Ceremonies in the Worship Center: $75
- For Ceremonies in the Guest Reception Room: $100
- Candelabra Package: $25
- Arch: $15
- Kneeling Bench: $5
Candles**: $.50 each
Wedding Coordinator: $200
- Wedding Assistant: $65
Media Technology (basic package)*: $150
Suggested Pastor's Honorarium (on-site): $250
Suggested Pastor's Honorarium (off-site): $300
*Due to the technical complexity of our audio/visual system, designated sound and lighting technicians from Grace must staff your wedding. Fees are charged according to your sound and lighting needs.
**If you desire to have candles in your ceremony, you need to use our specialty candles because they have unique sizes and features designed to protect the worship center.
If you have concerns about the cost of your wedding, speak to your Grace Church Wedding Coordinator. She can provide invaluable tips, resources and ideas for making your wedding affordable.
General Wedding Guidelines
Your wedding coordinator will advise you regarding decorating guidelines and reserving a decorating time for you. Any wall decorations are to remain as you find them, but they may be covered. Absolutely nothing is to be removed from the walls. No decorations may be used that require nails, tacks or tape that will leave marks in/on church furniture or walls.
In order to honor Christ with your entire ceremony, wedding music should reflect Christian values. If you have any questions, feel free to discuss song selections with your wedding pastor or coordinator.
Smoking and alcoholic beverages are not allowed anywhere in or on church property during the rehearsal, wedding, or reception.
Rice, birdseed, confetti, glitter, etc. are not allowed due to the extreme difficulty in cleaning up these items and preventing them from being tracked throughout the church. Celebration materials used on Grace Church property need to be approved by your wedding coordinator out of respect for the clean up involved. Extra charges will apply if this is violated.
Childcare is not permitted on Grace Church property. Any childcare needs should be arranged off the church premises.
Occasionally couples request that they be given communion as part of the ceremony. We cannot honor such requests due to Grace Church's understanding of Communion. A bride and groom's private celebration of Communion during their wedding ceremony would be inconsistent with the biblical teaching of the Lord's Supper, which Grace understands to be an observance of the entire Christian community.
We strongly recommend that you take your photos prior to the ceremony so that your guests are not kept waiting between the ceremony and the reception. Your photographs should begin two to three hours prior to the ceremony. Be sure to inform everyone whom you want present at the photographs (generally the entire wedding party and close relatives) of what time they should arrive. Make sure friends and relatives take pictures only after the photographer is finished; that way if you run out of time you will be sure to have the "official" shots completed. Only a minimum of photographs should be taken during the ceremony; your Wedding Coordinator will provide your photographer with more detailed guidelines. No flash photography is allowed during the ceremony.
Flowers should be delivered at least three hours before the start of the wedding. Your wedding coordinator will provide your florist with more detailed guidelines.
The video technician should arrive 90 minutes before the ceremony. Your Wedding Coordinator will provide your video technician with more detailed guidelines.
Soloists and accompanists should arrive 60 minutes before the ceremony so that a sound check and warm-up are completed before the guests are seated.
Obtaining a Marriage License
Your marriage license must be given (not mailed) to your officiating pastor's assistant one week prior to the wedding. It will be prepared for signatures and the pastor will bring it to the wedding. For details on how to obtain a marriage license in Minnesota, go to www.marriagetraining.org/license_details.htm.
Grace Church Pastors Who Perform Wedding Ceremonies
Pastors with a (P) following their name are certified to administer the PREPARE® inventory (a required component for couples being married at Grace Church or by any Grace Church pastor).
Click on a pastor's name below for his bio.
To schedule a meeting with a pastor, contact the assistant listed.
Travis Armstrong (P), Pastor to Junior High Students
Jason Barthelemy (P), Pastor to Senior High Students
Dave Gibson, Pastor of Missions & Outreach
Assistant, Joanie McKeever, 952-224-3093, email@example.com
Dean Morin (P), Pastor to Senior Adults
Assistant: Marcee Payne, 952-224-3051, firstname.lastname@example.org
Mac Threinen (P), Pastor of Men's Ministries
Assistant: Michael Kleven, 952-224-3075, email@example.com
Brian Vaughan (P), Pastor of Music & Worship
Assistant: Sue Larson, 952-224-3056, firstname.lastname@example.org