Weddings, Funerals, Christenings and Churchyard Memorials
Welcome to the Orwell Group of Parishes. We are pleased that you would like to find out more about getting married, or having your baby Baptised (Christened)
Initial contact should be through the Revd Felicity Couch – you can use the link to the Contact Us page below
We welcome anyone who lives within a parish or meets certain qualifying connections to marry within one of our churches. The qualifying conditions are legal requirements so cannot be waived. But as one of them is to attend church regularly this can usually be arranged.
If you have been divorced this does not mean you cannot marry again in church as sometimes people think. As long as you are fully committed to making vows for life we will marry you.
To arrange to discuss Marriage please contact Revd. Felicity.
N.B. if you wish to marry in one of our churches please contact Revd. Felicity before you book the reception venue.
We welcome children who live in our parishes for Baptism, or Christening.
As Baptism is a service where the child becomes a member of the church community, all baptisms are conducted within normal church services, when the rest of the church community will be present.
We also offer a service of Thanksgiving and Blessing, which celebrates a child’s arrival and asks for God’s blessing on them throughout their lives. This service is sometimes preferred to Baptism as it doesn’t have the expectation of continued church attendance
To arrange to discuss your child’s Baptism or Service of Thanksgiving please contact Revd. Felicity.
If you are in the sad position of needing to arrange a funeral, please contact Revd Felicity as soon as possible, as she will then be able to arrange for someone to take the service either at the church or in the Crematorium.
Whoever is going to take the service will meet with you to discuss what you would like to happen.
All our churchyards still have space in them except for St Andrew’s Orwell, which has the burial ground immediately behind the churchyard. If you wish to have your family member buried in them this can be arranged.
Similarly all the churchyards have areas set aside for burial of ashes, if you wish this to happen.
ERECTION OF CHURCHYARD MEMORIALS
After a burial, the funeral director will mark the grave of your loved one with a cross, which will remain until the ground has had time to settle and a memorial stone can be set.
Because a churchyard is both a public area and sacred ground it is important that memorial stones are in keeping with the area. When you start to think about a stone, please ask for the leaflet which will guide you in your choices.
It is always lovely to see flowers on graves as they show the loved one is still thought of, and it can be important for grieving family to show their love in this way. However please do not dig up the churchyard to plant gardens, this causes a problem with maintenance, can create trip hazards for other churchyard users and ultimately can undermine the headstone. If you wish to plant bulbs which can grow through the grass this is fine.
If you would like to view the full regulations, they can be found here