Mel and Stu
Anyone can get married in one of our churches or another Church of England church, without being a regular churchgoer. You can find out more about how you can have a church wedding on the Church of England’s site Your Church Wedding.
“We’re only getting married in the church because of Matthew, and I know my wedding wouldn’t be the same if it was any other vicar. He just makes church very now, very today.”
These are the words of Mel, whose marriage to Stu in Holy Trinity Church was featured in A Vicar’s Life.
Revd Matthew Stafford told us about his conversations with Mel and Stu:
“It started as just the banter that you get in hairdressers and when I heard they were planning to get married, I couldn’t resist asking why they weren’t getting married in my church. I offered to do them a lovely wedding and that was how it all started.”
“At first Stu was really sceptical of the whole church thing but it suddenly dawned on him that regardless of being a priest I was a human being who could have a laugh and a joke.”
Weddings are one of the most wonderful and joyful life events, which take place in our Church buildings, which are among the most beautiful around. A church wedding also offers a unique aspect to the day and to your marriage.
“There’s a big difference between a Register Office, a swanky hotel and a church”, explained Matthew, “We are saying from a Christian point of view that marriage at its best is the ultimate expression of love. “It’s about two people expressing a commitment to one another and it’s about God expressing his commitment to them, because he wants to be that supporting cord that ensures their marriage is fulfilling and lifelong.”
About 600 couples get married in our churches in the Diocese of Hereford each year and 50 more choose to have services of prayer and dedication after civil marriages.
Weddings can be the starting point for a personal faith journey or they can offer the opportunity for you to find out what belonging to a church community is like.
Matthew describes how having a church wedding changed Mel and Stu’s view of the parish church:
“The thing about Mel and Stu is that they’re not in church every week but their daughter has joined our youth choir, the Trinity Trebles and they’re coming once a month as a result. They’re also much more at ease and relaxed coming into the church [after their wedding].”
“I don’t think you can better a church wedding. We can offer something very special and personal and bespoke.”
If you were watching Episode I of A Vicar’s Life and you caught sight of Matthew’s special shirt for the day – bespoke clergy shirts are very much optional!