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The Episcopal Church of St Mary-in-the-Highlands
1 Chestnut Street
Corner of Routes 9D and 301 Cold Spring, New York 10516
(845) 265-2539

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StMarys

A beautiful historic stone church nestled in the Hudson Valley at the center of Cold Spring, New York. Within walking distance of Metro North and spectacular views of the Hudson River, Storm King Mountain, and West Point.

Ceremony Planning

The canons of the Church require that the priest performing the ceremony meet every couple for marriage counseling. The length of time required and number of sessions for the counseling will depend on how well acquainted the priest is with you.

As for the service itself there are two options: The Marriage Office or a Nuptial Mass. Most often it is the Marriage Office which is selected. It is a service of prayer, scripture reading, vows, and a blessing. This usually takes about 35 minutes. A Nuptial Mass is the Marriage Office plus Mass - this can take about an hour and fifteen minutes. Before you plan on a Nuptial Mass you must speak with the Rector. Many non-Episcopalians have religious scruples about receiving Holy Communion in other churches. We will not celebrate a Nuptial Mass at St Mary's unless both bride and groom, all members of the wedding party, and most of the guests will receive Holy Communion.

The service should be kept simple. There is far more beauty and dignity in a Wedding which has a sense of "noble simplicity". All too often, Brides-to-be can focus so much on how they do everything to the peril of what they are doing. This event is an Holy Sacrament done in front of God. If any of us lose sight of that we would all do better considering having the wedding somewhere else! This union is a wedding of Bride, Groom, and Christ.

Clergy from other denominations and other Episcopal clergy are always welcome to assist at the wedding. The Rector will be the principal celebrant, but visiting clergy are more than welcome to vest and take certain parts of the ceremony. Be sure to inform the Rector well ahead of time if you plan to have visiting clergy.

We have firm guidelines concerning music that is appropriate for Church Weddings. Music that is considered "popular" may be beautiful and may speak to you of the relationship you feel with each other, but such music is more appropriate for the reception than to the wedding ceremony. Please do not make any decisions about the music for the Wedding until you have discussed it with the Rector and the Organist.

Three Hymns are sung for the Wedding Office; Four for a Nuptial Mass. Please select hymns you are certain your guests will know and sing. The Rector will help you select the hymns and make copies of those selected for you.

Printing the program is your responsibility. The Rector and Organist must proof-read the final draft before the finished product is printed. If they are prepared commercially, the folded bulletins must be delivered to the Church at the rehearsal.

No weddings are permitted on Good Friday or Holy Saturday in the Episcopal Church. As these are moveable Holy Days, be sure to consult the Rector before setting the date.