Thank you for your interest in celebrating your commitment to each other at St Columba. The commitment to a life-long union is a very special one, and we are happy that you are thinking of making St Columba the setting for your ceremony. We hope that the following information will help to answer some of the more commonly asked questions.
Who may have such a service?
We have no requirement that one or both of the couple must be a member of St Columba or an Anglican, or be baptised. You might be from another church background, or no church background. However, a commitment made at St Columba is different from a ceremony which takes place in a garden or another location. We hope that couples who come to St Columba seeking God’s blessing on their relationship will be open to a discussion of the spiritual nature of that relationship and the place of God in their lives.
Who may officiate?
Other clergy may conduct blessing ceremonies at St Columba in consultation with the vicar of St Columba.
Do we have to attend a Course?
This is highly recommended. We regard this ceremony as a serious and significant undertaking, and so we believe you should prepare for your ceremony by seeking to understand more about each other, your relationship, and your hopes for the future. In addition to attending the two preparation sessions, you will have a meeting with the officiating Priest conducting your ceremony.
Can we write our own service?
Yes. Couples can write their own service in consultation with the officiating clergy, so it is personal and exclusive to you. Alternatively a liturgy can be provided to suit your needs.
Can we provide our own organist or other musician(s)?
Yes. But if the organ is used an organ fee of $100 must still be paid. We are happy to play recorded music if that is requested.
Are there any restrictions as to when a Covenant ceremony can take place?
We will conduct covenant ceremonies on any day, including Sunday, when the church is available, except for Good Friday and the Saturday of Easter weekend.
Do we need a rehearsal?
Other than very small ceremonies involving only the couple, we recommend having a rehearsal. This ensures that you are comfortable and that all participants in the ceremony are familiar with the service. Rehearsals are scheduled as St Columba’s calendar permits.
Can we film the service?
Photographers and videographers are welcome provided they are discreet.
How much does it cost to have a relationship blessing at St Columba?
If your blessing is being conducted by one of the St Columba priests –
- Celebrant’s fee: $300
- Venue hire: $650
The total cost is $950 (GST incl.) This covers the use of the church, meetings with the celebrant and rehearsal time. In addition, there is a fee for using the organ of $100, payable whether you use our organist or invite your own.
If you want your blessing to be conducted by another celebrant, he or she will need to be approved by the vicar of St Columba. Please contact us for more detailed information.
In all cases, a non-refundable booking fee of $100 is requested to secure the venue. The other fees are paid a week before the event.
What do we do next?
If you would like to make enquiries about having your relationship blessing at St Columba, please fill out our Enquiry Form or phone +64 9 376 9119 to make an appointment with the vicar. Once the booking has been confirmed and the fee is paid the ceremony date will be confirmed in writing.