Congratulations...on your decision to enter into the holy covenant of marriage! If Hope Community Church is your church home and you'd like to get married here, read on for more on our premarriage process.
This is an exciting time in your lives and we are happy for you. It is also an important time to talk about expectations. We take our responsibility as a church very seriously in regards to who we will marry. We care about your individual souls as well as your united soul.
There are two main factors that lead to our decision regarding who we can enthusiastically marry: a couple's preparedness for marriage and a demonstrated connectedness to the Hope community of faith.
Hope offers a premarriage process that is required for those who seek to be married at Hope or by a Hope Pastor. You'll need to begin this process at least 6-9 months before your desired wedding date for Hope to make a decision to marry you and provide the emotional and spiritual space you'll need to prepare for marriage.
The Premarriage Process
1. At least 6-9 months before your desired wedding date, complete the Marriage Application Questionnaire (PDF). Each of you must complete a questionnaire and then return it to: Hope Community Church Office, 302 Tristan Drive, Shawano, WI 54166. We will contact you within two weeks of receiving them.
2. Take the PREPARE inventory (online or by appointment). This inventory measures your strength and growth areas as a couple. You'll walk through the results with a pastor or church leader (3-5 sessions). Fee: $35/couple.
3. Meet with your marrying Pastor to plan your wedding ceremony (1-2 sessions).
For more information, please read Planning Your Wedding.
If you have any questions regarding the premarriage process, please call us at 715-524-2320.
The Hope Community Church Pastors and community of faith care about your spiritual, emotional, and physical well-being. We desire to model and speak truth and grace into the important area of human sexuality. Sexuality is a remarkable God-given gift. Our desire is to help you make lifestyle decisions that honor God and protect you from the pain and damage that can result when sexual activity takes place before marriage. We also believe there is forgiveness and tremendous healing that can touch our wounded past. This area of our lives is so significant we are committed to offering teaching and guidance that will help you enter a relationship prepared for a lifetime of loving, healthy and God-honoring sexual expression.
We ask all couples beginning the premarriage preparation process to abstain from sexual activity until after the wedding ceremony. We believe sexual activity outside the bonds of marriage is sin. It is our desire to see your future marriage have the strongest foundation possible and we believe a chosen period of abstinence can provide a time for re-establishing healthy personal boundaries. This helps restore our hearts and minds to God’s good purposes for the gift of sexuality and prepare us for a lifetime of sexual fidelity.
Statement on Marriage and Sexual Purity
Hope Community Church believes that marriage is sacred and represents the relationship between Christ and the believer (Ephesians 5:22-33). Therefore, marriage can exist only within the bonds of moral commitment and be sustained in an environment of purity and holiness. The heterosexual union expresses the plan of God for marriage and expresses the nature of God.
Commitment to Separate Living
We ask that all couples in our premarriage process make a commitment to refrain from sexual activity until they are married. In addition, we strongly encourage couples who are living together to seriously consider separate living arrangements until they are married. This is because practically it should make it easier to keep the commitment to abstain sexually until they are married, even though it may be financially beneficial or emotionally appealing not to do so.