Question re: church "donation" amount for wedding


#1

Does anyone know the usual range in amounts that is donated to the Priest/Church when one's daughter gets married in a ceremony there (not a Mass)? The Priest didn't tell them a set amount, so I'm guessing it's up to them or the parents, but we don't want to donate less than others usually give. The budget is being spread real thin as it is right now!
Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks.


#2

The parish secretary would know what's common for that particular parish.


#3

My husband and I asked our parish about that when we got married and they refused to tell us even a common range of donation levels. They wanted us to come up with what we thought would be an appropriate amount on our own. They didn't want us to be influenced by what others give.
I think we ended up giving $100 to the church and $100 to the priest. You could try googling for what the normal amount is.


#4

We gave $100 to the priest.


#5

I’ve often heard of people here giving $100. I think my son-in-law gave $200 to our officiant, but SIL is extremely generous. Fr. also did extensive and excellent marriage prep, in addition to officiating, and is a good friend.


#6

How bout this....

Ask around to several banquet halls of similar size what it is to rent out the hall for several hours and a/c or heat it, decorate it, and bring 200 (or whatever number you've invited ) people in that you know. (in addition to having a rehearsal there) See how much that costs...

Then weigh out the importance of having the wedding in the church...probably should triple that number, don't you think?

Over the top? Maybe... but when looking at the $ put into things that have no meaning (centerpieces, flowers, dinner), while nice to have, its interesting where our value gets placed with money spent.


#7

Rereading your original post, it shouldn’t matter if the ceremony is a mass or not. You can’t get married without the priest officiating in either case.


#8

[quote="agapewolf, post:6, topic:209920"]
Over the top? Maybe... but when looking at the $ put into things that have no meaning (centerpieces, flowers, dinner), while nice to have, its interesting where our value gets placed with money spent.

[/quote]

I think the OP was asking about the stipend for the priest, not the fee for the church.

In my experience the fee for the church is a set amount and they're not reluctant to tell you what it is.


#9

I think it depends on the parish, and especially on the part of the country. We paid $2000 for the use of the church (included the organist and the cantor - we used our own choir, but the donation was the same). We also gave our priest and deacon each a $100 gift card. Most of the churches around us charge between $800 and $2500 for a wedding. The church is cleaned before and after each wedding, plus consultations with both the music director and the staff member in charge of setting up for weddings. A custodian also is there for each wedding, about 2 hours before, for flower deliveries, and stays throughout the wedding, as well as a technician to run the sound a light board for the church.

I do know that at this particular church (it's a Cathedral) if a parishioner could not afford the fees, the coordinator would work with the couple to make the necessary arrangements for the wedding.


#10

Read the first sentence…they seemed to be asking about both.


#11

[quote="IgnatiusDaughtr, post:9, topic:209920"]
Most of the churches around us charge between $800 and $2500 for a wedding.

[/quote]

WOW! :eek: At my parish it is free! They just asked for a donation to offset the cost of air conditioning, cleaning, etc. I guess my husband and I got lucky. Our entire wedding budget was $10,000 - we couldn't afford to pay $2,500 just to use the church. We did pay about $300 for ceremony musicians and $80 for a marriage prep retreat, but that was it.


#12

[quote="Charlotte1776, post:11, topic:209920"]
WOW! :eek: At my parish it is free! They just asked for a donation to offset the cost of air conditioning, cleaning, etc. I guess my husband and I got lucky. Our entire wedding budget was $10,000 - we couldn't afford to pay $2,500 just to use the church. We did pay about $300 for ceremony musicians and $80 for a marriage prep retreat, but that was it.

[/quote]

I'm right with ya. I have never heard of any parish charging to use the church for a wedding until I become a member here.


#13

Haven't been married but I have heard that around $1000-1200 is standard fair that the parish charges for use of the facilities.
A "tip" for the priest would be good. I would suggest between $150-300 depending on your financial situation. Also inviting him to the dinner afterward and maybe a small personal gift. But call up the parish secretary, and find out what the norm there is.


#14

When a church has a standard donation fee, normally it’s $500 to $1000 for active parishioners and $1500 - $2500 for non-parishioners. Regarding donation to the priest, I’ve usually heard $100 - $250.


#15

With regard to use of the Church…our daughters were each married at our Cathedral, which charges $1200 (I actually don’t know what our parish charges, if anything, as that has never come up.)

We did hold our younger daughter’s reception at our new, beautiful parish hall, and used the parish chef (yes, we have one) for the dinner, which was delightful. So, we surely contributed to the parish coffers! :wink: The charge for a parishioner to rent the hall, when using their chef, was very reasonable, but I don’t recall the exact figure.


#16

[quote="agapewolf, post:6, topic:209920"]
How bout this....

Ask around to several banquet halls of similar size what it is to rent out the hall for several hours and a/c or heat it, decorate it, and bring 200 (or whatever number you've invited ) people in that you know. (in addition to having a rehearsal there) See how much that costs...

Then weigh out the importance of having the wedding in the church...probably should triple that number, don't you think?

Over the top? Maybe... but when looking at the $ put into things that have no meaning (centerpieces, flowers, dinner), while nice to have, its interesting where our value gets placed with money spent.

[/quote]

What are you saying? That a parish donation/fee should be triple the amount it would cost to hold a reception somewhere? Many thousands of dollars, perhaps? :eek:

I beg to differ about the "things that have no meaning." Please recall that Jesus performed his first miracle at the wedding feast of Cana. It is gracious and hospitable to treat one's guests to dinner or whatever is the local custom while celebrating after the sacrament.


#17

[quote="dixieagle, post:16, topic:209920"]
What are you saying? That a parish donation/fee should be triple the amount it would cost to hold a reception somewhere? Many thousands of dollars, perhaps? :eek:

I beg to differ about the "things that have no meaning." Please recall that Jesus performed his first miracle at the wedding feast of Cana. It is gracious and hospitable to treat one's guests to dinner or whatever is the local custom while celebrating after the sacrament.

[/quote]

No, I'm saying the cost to hold a CEREMONY somewhere. It's about where we put our value--- and Americans especially place value in things with money.

A dinner is not necessary for the sacrament to take place. You need a man, a woman, a priest/deacon, 2 witnesses. The dinner has no meaning in terms of a sacrament. A dinner is a celebration after the fact.


#18

[quote="agapewolf, post:17, topic:209920"]
No, I'm saying the cost to hold a CEREMONY somewhere. It's about where we put our value--- and Americans especially place value in things with money.

A dinner is not necessary for the sacrament to take place. You need a man, a woman, a priest/deacon, 2 witnesses. The dinner has no meaning in terms of a sacrament. A dinner is a celebration after the fact.

[/quote]

Your original post, then, was unclear, as you referenced things (centerpieces, flowers, dinner) that suggested the reception, not the wedding ceremony itself. (Clearly, we've all known couples who have their priorities all wrong ("MY special day.)

Of course the dinner is a celebration after the fact and not strictly necessary - I think we all understand that.


#19

[quote="dixieagle, post:18, topic:209920"]
Your original post, then, was unclear, as you referenced things (centerpieces, flowers, dinner) that suggested the reception, not the wedding ceremony itself. (Clearly, we've all known couples who have their priorities all wrong ("MY special day.)

Of course the dinner is a celebration after the fact and not strictly necessary - I think we all understand that.

[/quote]

Not really--- it was 2 different points in one. The first paragraph was pretty simple. Then I added an additional point about where people put money.

I don't understand why people have such an issue with paying so much money for renting a church building to take over with their own family and friends for a few hours, but don't have issues with spending it for a reception.


#20

[quote="agapewolf, post:19, topic:209920"]
Not really--- it was 2 different points in one. The first paragraph was pretty simple. Then I added an additional point about where people put money.

I don't understand why people have such an issue with paying so much money for renting a church building to take over with their own family and friends for a few hours, but don't have issues with spending it for a reception.

[/quote]

I do...

While I think it's acceptable to charge a fee that reflects power usage, any additional parish staff, etc., a church is NOT a reception hall; it is a place of worship where a sacrament is being conferred. This is different from simply "renting a building". Particularly if the bride/couple/family (at least one of these) are registered parishioners who regularly donate to the parish, I feel the fee, if any (and many parishes don't charge one) should be nominal. I don't think that the wedding of a contributing parishioner should be viewed as a money-making opportunity, beyond actual costs (and the customary donation to the officiant.)

Now, if the bride/couple/family is not a registered and contributing parishioner, that is another story entirely; for example, I had no problem with the fairly steep fees our Cathedral charged, as we are not parishioners there, but love it nonetheless. There is also an historic old church here that is so beautiful many out-of-parish brides wish to be married there; no problem with a fee for that, either.


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