Christ Church South Ossett

Qualifying Connections and Legalities

Qualifying Connections and Legalities

01924 263311

A Church of England Wedding

The Legalities:

Christ Church is the Parish Church of South Ossett. To marry here you or your fiancé must either:

  • Live in the Parish of South Ossett.
  • Or already be a regular worshipping member of that Church.
  • Or have a “Qualifying Connection”.

Qualifying Connections were established by Parliament in 2005. You may marry by Qualifying Connection if you or your fiancé:

  • Were baptised or confirmed in Christ Church.
  • Your parents or grandparents married in Christ Church.
  • You have, in the past, lived in South Ossett Parish for at least 6 months.
  • During your lifetime, one or more of your parents has lived in South Ossett Parish for at least 6 months.
  • During your lifetime, one or more of your parents has habitually worshipped at Christ Church for at least 6 months.

These are the only Qualifying Connections the law allows.

This means:

If you live in the Parish of South Ossett, or have a Qualifying Connection with Christ Church, then you can legally marry at Christ Church. If you live in another Parish and have no Qualifying Connection with Christ Church, then you will need to approach your local Parish Church or a Church with which you have a Qualifying Connection.

What if one of us is divorced?

The Church of England holds two understandings in tension: the belief that marriage is life-long along with the recognition that this is not always the case. If either of you has been previously married, a request for a subsequent marriage is decided only after a personal interview.

The Practicalities:

Please be aware that your legal right to marry in Christ Church does not extend to the decision about the day or the time – that is by request and with the agreement of the Vicar. Christ Church is not a “Wedding Venue”; it is a lively, busy, Church and some days and times are unavailable. Also, because the Marriage Service is a Sacrament of the Church, there are some restrictions on what is, and what is not, acceptable in the ceremony.

Once you have made contact, you will be guided through both the legalities and the personal aspects of your Church Wedding to make sure that your day is as memorable as it should be!

Please contact the Parish Office on 01924 263311. There is usually someone to take your call between 9.00 am-12.00 noon, Monday-Friday. If the Vicar is unavailable, please leave a phone number with an indication of when you are generally available to answer calls or complete the enquiry form on this page.

Get in touch