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Wedding Policies

Congratulations on your engagement!

What an exciting time for you and your future spouse! As you enter this new stage of preparing for marriage, planning a wedding, and everything in-between, it can all become overwhelming and stressful. Our hope is that this booklet will help you:

  1. Understand the process of planning a wedding at Countryside
  2. Provide you the information you need to make decisions along the way

Finding a godly spouse and making the decision to spend the rest of your lives together is so exciting and is an answer to many prayers. In fact, Scripture tells us that a Christian marriage is a picture of Christ’s own love for His church.

Wives, be subject to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, as Christ also is the head of the church, He Himself being the Savior of the body. But as the church is subject to Christ, so also the wives ought to be to their husbands in everything. Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her, so that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, that He might present to Himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she would be holy and blameless. So husbands ought also to love their own wives as their own bodies. He who loves his own wife loves himself; for no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ also does the church, because we are members of His body. For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and shall be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh. This mystery is great; but I am speaking with reference to Christ and the church. Nevertheless, each individual among you also is to love his own wife even as himself, and the wife must see to it that she respects her husband.

Ephesians 5:22–33

We are so excited to walk through this season with you! Don’t forget to enjoy it, because your wedding day will be here before you know it!

-The Countryside Staff and Wedding Coordinators

Weddings at Countryside Bible Church

Congratulations on your engagement and upcoming marriage! The wedding ceremony is both a joyful time and a reverent and holy occasion. A Christian wedding is a worship service to the Lord because a Christian marriage is a visible illustration of the relationship between the Lord Jesus Christ and His bride, the Church. Because of the serious nature and sacredness of marriage, the wedding ceremony should be conducted in a way that honors God and is a picture of what you desire your marriage to reflect.

At Countryside Bible Church our pastoral staff and elders will officiate weddings for couples of whom one or both are members in good standing of Countryside. Our pastors will not officiate weddings in which any part of the ceremony conflicts with the normal worship services on the Lord’s Day. The individuals being married must both have a clear testimony of faith in our Lord Jesus Christ.

All weddings at Countryside must be in accordance with Countryside Bible Church’s doctrinal statement, distinctives, and teachings on biblical marriage. It is our desire that all events associated with a wedding that is held at Countryside Bible Church be consistent with a desire to glorify our Lord.

Planning

Step 1 – Request a Pastor/Officiant

Contact the pastor or elder you desire to do your premarital counseling and wedding ceremony. Let them know what timeframe you are hoping to be married in and ask if they would officiate your wedding. (Waiting too long to confirm the officiant runs the risk of a scheduling conflict.) Remember, only CBC pastors and elders may officiate weddings at Countryside Bible Church. If you don’t have a pastor in mind already, skip to step 2 and one of the wedding coordinators will connect you with a pastor!

Pre-Marital Counseling

Premarital counseling is required as part of the wedding process at Countryside. So often this time of your engagement can be focused on planning the wedding, but don’t forget that you are not just planning a wedding, you are preparing for marriage! Pre-marital counseling is a great way to focus on learning more about your future spouse, yourself, and how you can best serve Christ together within your marriage. Some of the topics you will discuss with your pastor are communication, conflict resolution, finances, the Biblical roles of husband and wife, etc. Appointments for premarital counseling should be made as soon as the decision to be married is reached.

Step 2 – Connect with the CBC Wedding Coordinator

Contact one of our CBC Wedding Coordinators at weddings@countrysidebible.org to talk about potential dates and get started on filling out the Wedding Request Form. All weddings at CBC are managed by one of the CBC Wedding Coordinators. She will be your primary point of contact throughout the wedding planning process. Please direct all questions regarding your wedding, reception, or rehearsal to your coordinator.

The CBC Wedding Coordinator will provide help in many areas, including:

  • Planning the wedding ceremony*
  • Facilitating the wedding rehearsal and ceremony*
  • Communicating between all CBC departments
  • Providing details to the couple regarding the CBC facility, including serving items and decorating items available for use

*Please note: the CBC Wedding Coordinator does not help with planning or facilitating the wedding reception. However, it is wise to arrange for a wedding reception coordinator. We strongly recommend choosing a reception coordinator who is familiar with our church campus and policies.

Step 3 – Have Wedding Date Approved for Church Calendar

After conferring with your pastor and the CBC Wedding Coordinator, complete the online Wedding Request Form to request your wedding date be approved and added to the church calendar. Please note:

  • Weddings cannot conflict with general activities on the Countryside calendar
  • Saturday weddings must begin no later than 3pm
  • All buildings must be cleaned up, emptied of all items, and vacated by 5pm on Saturday
  • Weddings are not scheduled on Sundays
  • For a normal Friday evening/Saturday afternoon wedding, setup and decoration may begin no earlier than Thursday at 12pm, and the buildings must be vacated by 9pm on Thursday and Friday

Step 4 – Meet with the CBC Wedding Coordinator

Once the wedding has been approved and added to the church calendar, your CBC wedding coordinator will contact you to schedule an orientation meeting! At the orientation meeting the coordinator and the Bride, Groom, Mother(s), etc. will discuss wedding details, church policies, decor, etc. They will go over the available areas of the church, and what is included in those areas (Ceremony, Reception, Rehearsal Dinner), such as:

  • AVL abilities (livestream, recording, sound, instruments, mic, slideshow, video, lyrics on screen, etc.)
  • Maximum capacity for standing and seating options
  • Fees associated with the areas reserved
  • Serving areas for food and drink (serving kitchen locations, fellowship hall kitchen)
  • The designated changing areas for bridal parties
  • Floor plan layout options/suggestions
  • Decorations that the church has available for use, and how to reserve them
  • Cover anything that is not allowed in those areas

Step 5 – Plan the Wedding!

Fill out the online wedding information form for the wedding coordinator (as soon as possible). These forms must be submitted before the Final Wedding Prep Meeting, 1 month before the wedding.

**Any questions/clarifications to/from the church staff will be communicated through the wedding coordinator. The wedding coordinator will inform the couple as their wedding details are approved.

Order of Service

The order of service for the ceremony should be discussed with the officiant and submitted to the wedding coordinator at least a month prior to the wedding. If helpful, the officiant, the wedding coordinator and the couple may meet together to discuss the order of service.

Step 6 – Final Wedding Prep Meeting

One month prior to the wedding, the wedding coordinator will hold a Final Wedding Prep Meeting with the couple to finalize all the details of the wedding ceremony, facilities setups, AVL needs, etc. The wedding coordinator will send the finalized details to the officiant, the couple and each of the departments involved.

Step 7 – Wedding Week!

Rehearsal

To ensure a smooth ceremony, it is helpful for all members of the wedding party (including ushers and grandparents) to attend the rehearsal. Please encourage everyone to be on time. The rehearsal will last between an hour and an hour and a half depending on party size and the intricacy of the ceremony (this will be discussed at the meeting before the wedding). The Wedding Coordinator and Officiant will run the wedding rehearsal.

General Conduct

Weddings are a joyful celebration but also a sacred service that should communicate the seriousness of the vows that are being exchanged. We would ask that the behavior, speech and activities at the wedding rehearsal, rehearsal dinner, wedding ceremony, and wedding reception be pleasing to the Lord.

We would also ask that attire be modest, both at the rehearsal and on the wedding day. Please use discretion for the glory of God and the testimony of the church.

The elders do not permit alcohol, smoking/vaping, or dancing at any events at CBC. We understand these are not biblically prohibited, but because of the difficulty in providing oversight, as well as the possible offense to some who might be in attendance, we have determined not to allow these activities on the church grounds.

Please ensure that all children are supervised during the wedding events. The childcare facilities are not available for use during the rehearsal, ceremony, or reception.

Music

Music plays an important part during the wedding ceremony. The couple is responsible to choose the music and make the necessary arrangements with any vocalists, accompanists, or instrumentalists. They must also ensure the musicians have all the necessary scheduling information, copies of the music, and/or accompaniment.

All music and/or videos must be approved in advance by the Music Director at Countryside Bible Church. We ask that you include lyrics in written form for all song selections. While secular music is allowed, please remember that during the ceremony you will be making a covenant before God, and the music should reflect that.

With this in mind, we ask that you please select either Christian music or music with a classical style for the wedding ceremony. If your music selection has a lyric line, please be sure that the lyrics are in keeping with the teachings of Scripture. You may use secular music during the reception so long as the lyrics are appropriate for a Christian gathering.

If you need assistance in making selections, please ask the Wedding Coordinator for recommendations. If you plan to use any pre-recorded music in the ceremony, please bring a copy to the rehearsal so that the AVL technician can test it.

General Facility Guidelines

Facility Setups

The Wedding Information Form will cover a wide variety of details. Many of these are details that our facilities team will need in order to best prepare and set up the venue for you.

Food and Kitchen Use

A proposed menu of all food and beverages planned for the reception must be submitted on the Wedding Information Form for approval. Your Coordinator will let you know when the menu is approved.

  • No red or purple foods or beverages (e.g., icing, sauces, or punch) or chocolate fountains are allowed in any of the church buildings

If you desire to use the Fellowship Hall kitchen, a training session is required. Contact the wedding coordinator to schedule training for the one using the kitchen equipment.

The kitchen is to be cleaned up on the day of the wedding (even if using a caterer).

Decorations

Decorations for Use

Your wedding coordinator can provide you a catalogue of decorating items available at Countryside Bible Church. There is a section of the Wedding Information Form where you can reserve all items you are interested in borrowing from the church.

Decoration Clean-up/Tear-down

It is the responsibility of the couple to arrange the decorating for their wedding, as well as ensuring that all decorations are cleaned up/removed/returned from the facilities immediately following the wedding.

This includes:

  • Any decorations borrowed from the church
  • All decorations or items that have been brought in or rented
  • Any leftover food and beverage items

Decoration Notes

  • Real flame candles are only allowed on the stage and tables and must be enclosed in a container higher than the flame (unless flameless candles)
  • No tacks are to be used in the Worship Center or Chapel
  • No decorations or flowers may be placed on the piano or organ
  • If you need to use tape, ask your coordinator for approved materials (that do not leave residue for our custodial staff)
  • Please do not throw rice, confetti, birdseed, etc., anywhere on the church campus

Fees & Payment

Included in the fee for a wedding ceremony is:

  • Wedding Coordinator
  • Sound Technician
  • Video Operator
  • Media and Lighting
  • Camera Operator(s)
  • Custodial services (inc. linens, set up, event inventory, etc.)

You may pay through an online link provided by the wedding coordinator or write a check to Countryside Bible Church and turn it in to the wedding coordinator at least one week before the wedding.

Please also note that proper wedding etiquette is to provide honorariums for those who participate in your wedding in areas such as music, food service, etc.


Pricing & Amenities

Ceremony

Worship Center Worship Center Lobby Chapel
Fee $1,000 $500 $750
Facilities
Maximum Guest Capacity 1,000 50 400
Groom Suite Prayer Room Prayer Room Conference Room
Bridal Suite Green Room Green Room CH1
Audio/Visual
Handheld Microphone Yes No Yes
Headset Microphone Yes No Yes
Piano Yes No Yes
Keyboard Yes Yes Yes
Recorded Music Yes No Yes
Live Musicians Yes Acoustic Only Yes
Video / Slideshow Playback Yes Yes Yes
Lyrics Print or Slides Print Print or Slides
Live Stream Yes No Yes
Video Record Yes No Yes
Slide Lyrics / Wording for Live Stream No No No


Reception

WC Lobby Chapel Fellowship Hall North Building
Fee $250 $400 $200 $100
Facilities
Maximum Guest Capacity
Table Seating N/A 272 180 N/A
Standing Room Only 400 400 250 75
Refreshment / Decoration / Gift Tables Yes Yes Yes Yes
Bistro Tables Yes No Yes Yes
Chairs without Tables Yes Yes Yes Yes
Audio/Visual
Handheld Microphone No Yes Yes Yes
Piano No Yes Yes No
Keyboard Yes No No Yes
Background Music Recorded or Acoustic Recorded or Live Recorded or Acoustic Recorded or Live
Video/Slideshow Playback Yes Yes Yes Yes


Rehearsal Dinner

Fellowship Hall*
Fees INCLUDED
Maximum Guest Capacity (tabled seating) 180
Kitchen Access Yes, with training, beginning the day before the rehearsal dinner.
Fridge / Freezer Access Yes, beginning day before rehearsal dinner.
Decorations Contact Wedding Coordinator
Audio / Visual
Handheld Microphone Yes
Piano Yes
Keyboard No
Background Music Recorded or Acoustic
Video / Slideshow Playback Yes


*If the Fellowship Hall is already booked as the reception area, the wedding coordinator may request another venue on campus for the rehearsal dinner.


Wedding Information Form

The wedding coordinator will ask you to fill out an online form with many details about your wedding day. Below is a list of the questions on the form so you can be planning ahead! Please ask your coordinator to see the Decoration Inventory for items available from Countryside.

General Information

  • Names of bride and groom
  • Would you like your invitation to be included in the church bulletin (open to all)?

Ceremony

  • In which building at church will your ceremony take place?
  • Would you like your ceremony to be live-streamed? (Only available in certain buildings)
  • Would you like the live-streaming link to be public (streamed through Countryside's website and YouTube) or private (You would be sent a link to share with friends and family)?
  • Would you like a recording of the ceremony? Where do we send the link?

Prelude

  • Will there be Guest Book Attendant(s)? What are their names?
  • Do you plan to have Ushers? What are their names? Will they seat guests, or just greet at the doors?
  • Would you like guests to be seated from the sides only, or from the middle aisle as well?
  • What music will play during the prelude? Will it be live or recorded? If live, who are the musicians?

Seating/Entrances

  • Seating of the Grandparents (if applicable) – List the names of grandparents, whether they are maternal or paternal side, and who will be seating them.
  • Seating of the mothers – List names of groom’s mother, bride’s mother, and desired escorts.
  • What music selection will play for the seating of the grandparents and seating of the mothers?
  • Please list the names of the Bridal Party in order starting with the Maid/Matron of Honor and Best Man.
  • What music selection will play for bridal party entrance?
  • Will the Bridesmaids be escorted by the Groomsmen?
  • Will there be Flower Girl(s) or Ring Bearer(s)? What are their names? Will they stand on stage with the Bridal Party or sit with family?
  • Who will escort the bride down the aisle? What is their relation to the bride?
  • What music selection will play for the bride’s entrance?

Ceremony Details

  • Are there any special events you want to incorporate into your ceremony (unity candle, Scripture reading, special music, etc.)? Who will be involved in these events?
  • Who will be holding the rings during the ceremony?
  • What is your music selection for the Recessional?
  • Who will be involved in the Recessional (include parents/extended family or just wedding party)?
  • How would you like your guests to be dismissed (all together, or by rows)?

Reception

  • In which building at church will your reception take place?
  • Who is coordinating the reception? Who is the MC? What is their contact information?
  • When will your reception start and end? What is the timeline of events?
  • What music will be playing in the background of your reception?
  • If you are planning to serve any food or drinks at your reception, please list everything out below.
  • Will there be speeches/toasts made during the reception, and who will give them?
  • Will you have a grand exit with anything special? (E.g. bubbles, sparklers, etc.? Some unique items may need to receive CBC approval)

Ceremony and Reception Set Up & Clean Up

  • Would you like to have one of the arbors set up on stage?
  • Will you need tables for the ceremony area and what size?
  • Will you need tables for the reception area and what size?
  • Please list any tablecloths or table toppers you need to reserve.
  • Please list all decorations you are interested in borrowing from the church for the ceremony & reception.
  • Please describe any unique or oversized decorations you are planning for your wedding.
  • Who will be responsible for breaking down and cleaning up the ceremony venue? The reception venue?