Mariages

Families come in all shapes and sizes and the Church rejoices when people find love with each other. There is a service, Holy Matrimony, which is appropriate for creating and blessing the union between a man and a woman with the intention that it be lifelong and will exclude other sexual relationships within the marriage. If you have suffered the pain of a divorce the Church can provide a special celebration of Blessing and Celebration at the beginning of your new relationship. The Church doesn’t yet sanction the marriage of gay people but if you wish to have your Civil Partnership celebrated, the Church will work with you, in consultation with the Bishop, to provide a joyful and appropriate thanksgiving of your union.

Whatever your personal circumstances, the clergy will work closely with you to produce a liturgy which will reflect and celebrate your love for each other. Marriage preparation consists of three evenings spent together in planning over dinner and a rehearsal before the celebration.

At a marriage service

  • The bride (often with her father), and the groom (often with his best man) will join the Priest at the altar in the presence of their family and friends. The Priest will welcome everyone and usually a hymn is sung. Sometimes friends of the couple give readings from the Holy Bible or other sources.
  • The Priest will ask anyone in the congregation, and the couple, if they know of any reason why the marriage should not take place
  • He will ask the couple to join their hands and to make their marriage vows to each other. He will bless the wedding rings and the couple will place rings on each other’s fingers as a sign of commitment.
  • He will bless their marriage and, with his stole, tie a knot around their right hands to symbolize that they are now “one flesh”. He will invite the couple to show their love with a kiss.
  • The couple, two witnesses and the Priest will sign the marriage registers before the couple leaves the church to celebrate with family and friends.

Forms you may need?

If you are interested in this service, the following forms will need to be downloaded and completed.

Please note, there is one form for each church within the parish.

Once completed, please return either by email or by post.

More information?

If you are interested in Holy Matrimony at either St Saviour’s or St Mary’s please download the Banns of Marriage form for the church you would like to be married at.  If you are getting married in a church outside of this parish you are required to have your Banns of Marriage read at both the church you are to be married in AND at the church whose Parish you reside in.   If you would like to enquire about a service of blessing following a Civil Registration of Marriage or a Civil Partnership Ceremony please contact the Parish Office on 020 7723 7266

Contact us

Camilla and James

“We chose St Mary’s for so many reasons.  Apart from the strong family ties to the parish, the building itself is just beautiful – the way the light streams through the windows and slants across the altar is magical, and the airy dome is gorgeous and acoustically useful!

We were keen to have a central London wedding anyway, to keep things simple for our families and friends, and it was close to a number of excellent reception venues (we ended up using The Landmark Hotel, but considered The Amadeus Centre, London Zoo and Lords Cricket Ground). But more than anything we chose St Mary’s for Father Gary Bradley.  Having been an actor in a previous life (which appealed to us, being in the business ourselves), his sense of performance and occasion are magnificent.

He wrote his sermon based on detailed conversations with us, designed to appeal to the large atheistic contingent in our congregation, and it was funny and moving in equal measure. Both he and Karen, the administrator, handled the organisation wonderfully, and put us completely at ease, and they were so accommodating, from having canapes on the lawns outside, to facilitating our choices of readings and music, and in letting us use the facilities flexibly.

Hopefully you can tell from the photos what a joyous day it was, and this was in huge measure down to Gary, Karen and St Mary’s.  We’ve since moved away from the area, but have had both of our children baptised there – it couldn’t have been anywhere else, so dear to us is the place.”

Their photographer was Benjamin Walker

Steve and Victoria

On August 16th 2014 Steve and I were married at St Mary’s Paddington Green It was important to us to be married in a church as we are both Christians and we felt that for us finding the right church was essential to creating a special and lasting memory of the most significant day in our lives.

Getting to Know the Parish

We stumbled across St Mary’s Paddington Green on a Sunday evening on the way home from a weekend away looking at churches in Yorkshire. We live in Little Venice and could hardly believe that the perfect church was on our doorstep. We were immediately struck by a number of qualities. Namely that it has a sense of history as a place of worship, a sense of community, also there is a feel to the church that we loved (sorry I can’t explain it better than that) and not least of all, the church has a real understated beauty and calm, inside and out. This all achieved I a central London setting.
Of course, it was also hugely important to us that we connect with the person due to marry us. Father Gary Bradley welcomed us with open arms and walked us through the necessary details, considerations (and legalities) of getting married. This was done in a friendly and sensitive way. In fact it was great fun to have a meal and a glass of wine together. To discuss how we came together and how we wished to formalise that commitment in the sight of God.

Support and Guidance

The fact that Father Gary took time to get to know us meant a lot then and has continued to mean a lot as we have been embraced as regular members of the congregation at St Mary’s. Organising details such as the flowers was made trouble-free thanks to Peggy the Verger and at that stage of our wedding plans it was a real blessing for everything to go smoothly. Our family and friends also had a great day. We received numerous comments on how perfectly the ceremony went and how beautiful the Church looked.

Like all engaged couples we had high expectations for our wedding day and the Church, its community in particular, but I can honestly say that the Church means more to us now than we could have ever imagined.

Katrina and Jason

We were married in St. Mary’s on 19th December, 2014 and are delighted to say that the whole process, from early discussions to the big day itself was an absolute joy and could not have been simpler.

Finding St Mary’s (by Jason)
As a couple we definitely wanted a church wedding. My (now) wife Katrina’s family are catholic and regular church goers, and I was christened in the Church of England – although neither I nor my family have ever attended church regularly. Initially we considered a Catholic wedding but this wasn’t straightforward route as it required the non-Catholic (me) to undertake some instruction. A secular service was also out from experience we felt these tened not to have the gravitas or sense of ceremony we wanted. So we were casting around for beautiful London churches with a sense of history and grandeur whe Katrina remembered St. Mary’s from a walking tour of Little Venice many moons ago. We visited on a Sunday afternoon and were immediately excited. St. Mary’s has a striking exterior aspect – cinematic even – and a dramatic light infused interior. And best of all, it was in our local area, hidden in plain sight all along.

Preparations (by Jason)
We made an enquiry and soon thereafter found ourselves sitting in the drawing room at the presbytery with Fr. Gary Bradley and a fine glass of red wine! One evening in Fr. Gary’s company was all it took to convince us that not only had we found the right church, we’d also found the right priest. He was incredibly welcoming, interested in our backgrounds and how we had met. He was and is contemporary in his attitudes and a considerable source of knowledge and guidance on liturgy. He simply recommended that we have regular dinner dates throughout the ten months that followed, in order to get to know one another and plan our service. And plan we did, over a number of great meals accompanied by much laughter, some wine and the occasional ribald anecdote from Fr. Gary about the Maida Vale of yesteryear! Fr Gary lent his support throughout, advising on everything from the kind of service we wanted, readings, music and even Church decorations. Music was especially important to Katrina and I, and we were extremely fortunate in Jonathan Cunliffe, director of music at St Mary’s who helped us devise an ambitious musical programme, the quality of which delighted our guests and is one of our prevailing memories of the day. With the planning overall where we had strong ideas of our own they were encouraged and where we didn’t, Fr. Gary was always ready with an astute suggestion. Special mention must also be made of Peggy Windsor, St. Mary’s delightful Verger whose logistical prowess in terms of coordinating rehearsal, flowers and decorations made for a smooth final few days before the wedding.

The BIG day (by Katrina!)
After a quick rehearsal the night before our big day arrived and despite the December chill, sunshine was streaming through St. Mary’s windows making the church and our amazing Christmas themed flowers and candles more beautiful than we even dared to dream! Fr. Gary beamed at me as I got out of the car and commented that my affianced was “… so nervous, he was like jelly on a stick!” but reassured me he had taken charge and calmed him down! It was so wonderful to be being married by a man we had both come to know so well. His care for us throughout the process was just amazing. To say we knew we were in safe hands is an understatement – and the fact that the homily was always going to go down a storm due to Fr. Gary’s unparalleled style of delivery was just the icing on the cake! The service went onto exceed our expectations in every way – but even more importantly it thrilled each and every one of our guests. It was full of joy, love, fun –and even mulled wine due to Fr. Gary allowing us to keep the guests warm and happy in the church following the service while we captured the all important bride and groom photos outside. All I can say is the feeling you get when you turn around having been married, and see a church full of 140 of your nearest and dearest, all singing Jerusalem at the top of their lung (and aided by Jonathan’s marvellous choristers) as you walk back down the aisle is indescribable!

Conclusion (by Jason)
Looking back I cannot see how our wedding could have been improved upon. Getting married at St. Mary’s allowed us to reconcile Katrina’s Catholicism, my Church of England background and the various perspectives of our respective families and guests. In fact we had a number of guests (mainly on my side I have to admit!) with a predominantly secular attitude and they were heard to gush, “I didn’t know religion could be this much fun” – which says it all really! St. Mary’s is a uniquely modern and welcoming parish, with Fr. Gary a peerless leader. We look forward to feeling connected to this beautiful place for the rest of our married life.

Their photographer was Koon Leung Photography

Miles & Grace Williams

Before our engagement neither of us were regular church-goers, although we were no strangers to faith having both been as children. We had always imagined getting married in a church. We felt that a declaration as important as this should be held somewhere that reflected not only the spirituality and gravity of our union, but also recognised the traditions that precede us.

When the time came, we were faced with a challenge because our childhood experiences of church were each quite different – one Roman Catholic and one evangelical – so we decided to embark on a journey together to find a place of worship where we both felt comfortable, and which felt suitable for this momentous occasion. It was also important for us to get married in and around the area where we had met and now lived.

Getting to know the Parish of Little Venice
We first visited different local churches, all of which either reinforced our concerns that we wouldn’t fit in, or that just didn’t feel special enough. However, from the moment we stepped into St Mary’s, we knew we had found our place. It was important that we didn’t feel like strangers in the surroundings in which we took our vows, so we decided to start going each week. This gave us the chance to get to know the surroundings and the faces of the Parish, as well as the reassurance that the energy of the church was right for us and that the clergy were on our wavelength.

The sincerity and positivity of the services, along with the love and affection we received from Fr. Gary and everyone we met, provided us with a true sense of acceptance and confidence that this church was the place to celebrate our special day. Along the way, we were able to spend time with Fr. Gary in an informal setting to plan exactly what it was that we wanted – this was met with excitement and enthusiasm on his part which we loved.

The marriage ceremony
The marriage ceremony itself was the most important part of the day for us, and the combination of traditional liturgy and ritual, together with the personal touches that we decided to add – such as the choir and readings – really set the tone for the rest of the celebrations. Seeing all our friends and family together in this place which had become so special to us was truly overwhelming and unforgettable.

As cliched as it sounds, our wedding day was the best day of our lives! In addition, we made genuine connections with real people during the run up to our marriage and have continued to do so for the past two years since then. St Mary’s has now become our regular place of worship an we love going there together.