Everyone brings previous life choices, experiences and sometimes extenuating circumstances into a relationship. Our premarriage guidelines will provide you with clear, biblical answers to various questions concerning divorce, remarriage, sexual purity etc. We’ve also listed many FAQ’s regarding booking a NorthRidge wedding, Pastoral officiant information etc.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
When should we connect with premarriage care?
Contact the CARE office as soon as you are engaged, with or without a ring or a wedding date. This is for all NorthRidge couples either getting married at NorthRidge, another local venue or a destination wedding.
How do I find a NorthRidge pastor to officiate our wedding?
The officiant is selected from information provided on the Premarriage Questionnaire. Once the Questionnaire is completed, the Care office contacts the pastor. If available, he will hold that date until the couple meets with him for their premarriage interview and the wedding is approved.
Note: The Senior Pastor is unavailable to officiate weddings.
What if we want a pastor that is not on the NorthRidge staff to marry us, but we want to be married at NorthRidge?
Some couples have a pastor they identify with before transitioning to the Detroit area and request them to officiate their wedding. We are able to honor this request as long as the pastor is of like faith and belief and his license also covers officiating a Michigan wedding. As a courtesy, the requested pastor connects with our staff to confirm participation.
Couples will still need to complete the premarriage preparation provided by NorthRidge.
Can a NorthRidge pastor marry us offsite?
Yes of course! Pastors are also available for destination weddings!
Who will help us plan our NorthRidge wedding?
The NorthRidge The NorthRidge Wedding Coordinator will meet with a couple once they’ve completed their premarriage interview. She will go over details with the bride and groom in preparation for their wedding.
What are the costs associated with a NorthRidge wedding?
Room 2229 [seating for 100-250 guests] costs $500.00 [includes Wedding Coordinator; A/V – Tech support; use of facility including dressing rooms and rehearsal; use of NorthRidge decorations; set up and tear down of event.
Room 2213 [seating up to 100 guests] costs $300.00 and includes same as above.
What is a customary honorarium for the officiating pastor?
In reviewing similar churches, an appropriate honorarium is $300.00.
Can we have our wedding reception at NorthRidge?
Our facility is unavailable for receptions due to weekend services and the high volume of ministry activites.
What is the general availability for a NorthRidge wedding?
Weddings take place on Friday evenings and Saturdays by 12:00 noon. We are unable to accommodate wedding requests for holiday weekends, Sundays and the month of December.
Do we have to be a member or active attender to get married at NorthRidge?
On-campus weddings are available only to active attenders and members whose weddings have been approved through our premarriage process. A list of local churches who let non-attenders use their facility is available upon request.
When should we secure our wedding reception?
If you’re planning on getting married at NorthRidge or using a NorthRidge pastor to officiate your wedding, we recommend you wait till your pastoral interview and your wedding is approved.
How and when should we secure a marriage license?
A marriage license is secured in the county in which you reside. Each county has certain requirements which usually require a valid driver’s license, birth certificate, and a small fee. In most counties the marriage needs to be solemnized within 30-33 days of application and a waiting period of 3-5 days. If couples reside in Michigan they do not have to be married in the same county they secured their marriage license, out-of-state residents must.
My fiancée lives a ‘long distance’ from NorthRidge. How are we to participate in the
premarriage preparation process?
Some couples are faced with a ‘proximity’ issue in preparing for marriage. Since all pertinent information is sent via email, we can receive vital information that will aid in determining the status of your relationship for marriage without a fiancée being present.
Note: In some cases, e.g., military service, there are restrictions which will limit the participation in the sessions and seminar. the assigned pastor will review such cases and determine alternative plans for premarriage care.
How many people does the NorthRidge Wedding location seat?
There are two rooms for weddings. The larger room is for weddings with 100 – 250 guests. The smaller room is for weddings with 100 or fewer guests. See the pricing page for financial details.
Can we see what the wedding room will look like?
Both of the rooms used for weddings can include any / all decorations provided by Northridge including pillars, candles, flowers, chair covers and more which our team sets up and takes down. The Wedding Coordinator will show the couple all that is available to them. A couple can also bring in their own decorations, which they are responsible for setting up and taking down.
Are there any circumstances where NorthRidge would not marry us?
Sometimes, there are indicators denote areas of concern to proceed with a wedding. The pastor will review these concerns with the couple during the premarriage interview and request a postponement of marriage.
If the couple is willing to consider these pastoral recommendations and work in specific areas of their lives or relationship, we are willing to walk with them in their journey to prepare for a lifetime of marriage. We will marry a couple after they successfully work through the extended preparation plan designed for them.
Does NorthRidge perform vow renewals?
Our Pastor’s are happy to officiate vow renewals. A Pastor honorarium is requested and a small fee may be required for room usage depending on number of guests and if using church decorations. Pastor’s are available for vow renewals both on and off campus.
Can a believer and an unbeliever marry?
We will postpone a booking arrangement for a wedding date until the future bride and groom are spiritually compatible. (2 Corinthians 6:14)
What if we are sexually active?
God speaks directly to this subject through His Word, calling on the benefits and blessings of self-control and obedience, rather than the denial of physical pleasure. We ask that you would commit to remaining sexually pure until your wedding day. (Hebrews 13:4)
What if we are living together?
We believe that couples should not live together prior to marriage. Often, when couples are living together as ‘husband and wife’ prior to marriage they have greater tension in their relationship than married couples, and have a higher divorce rate after marriage. God wants marriage to be a true commitment, a lifetime covenant, and not a trial run. Consider the payoff in living by God’s principles for relationships and marriage as you prepare for your future together. (1 Cor. 6:18 The Message)
How long should we be a couple before we consider marriage?
We recommend at least six months of dating.
We highly encourage couples to patiently wait prior to rushing into marriage. This is one of the most important decisions a couple will ever make. Take time to truly know each other and make the proper preparations and relational work that needs to be completed prior to saying “I Do.” Remember, you are stepping into a covenant, not just a commitment.
How long does it take to prepare for a wedding?
One year is highly recommended for adequate preparation including the need for advanced booking of outside reception halls. We advise you to come into our process as soon as you are thinking seriously of marriage or well before your desired wedding date.
Depending on many variables, six months is the shortest possible time to be able to effectively prepare for a life-long marriage.
What if one of us is divorced?
The Bible values the permanence of marriage. To protect couples in this important matter, we won’t perform a marriage involving divorced individuals unless they meet biblical exceptions.
We view the exceptions in the Bible to include:
- Sexual unfaithfulness of a spouse (Matthew 5:32, 19:9)
- A believer who has been divorced by an unbelieving spouse and has made every attempt to make restoration (I Corinthians 7:15)
- Those divorced prior to salvation whose prior marriage is irreconcilable
If divorced, how long should we wait before remarrying?
We believe that a new relationship should not be pursued until the potential of a healthy reconciliation has been exhausted and time for personal recovery has passed. We encourage at least two years to have elapsed from the time the divorce was made legally final.
This will ensure that at least there has been the opportunity for individuals to have spent time getting back to a healthy place spiritually, emotionally and mentally before pursuing a new relationship.
Is divorce recovery counseling necessary?
Yes, we encourage individuals to participate in counseling sessions or support groups that address recovery from a divorce, as well as to explore the possibility and/or wisdom of reconciliation, remarriage, and singleness. NorthRidge Church provides DivorceCare Recovery through LifeShare Ministries. For individuals looking for information regarding professional counseling, there are people we can recommend to you at www.northridgechurch.com/connecting/care_ministries.aspx or by contacting the Care office at 734.414.7777.