The church address for the printing of invitations is:
St. Josaphat Church
2311 N. Southport Ave.
Chicago, Illinois 60614
St. Josaphat Church
Southport & Belden Avenues
Chicago, Illinois 60614
Most couples choose to hold a rehearsal a day or two before their wedding--even a week or more before the wedding is acceptable. The rehearsal time is set with the staff person who is arranging your wedding with you. A rehearsal takes between thirty and forty-five minutes. Please remember that we have an evening mass every Wednesday and Thursday at 6:00p.m., and other prayer services on some evenings.
In addition to the bride and groom and members of the wedding party, you may want to have your lectors present in order to learn where they will sit, when they will read, and (if they would like) to go through their reading at the rehearsal. Parents and any of your guests are always welcome at the rehearsal.
Please ask everyone who will be attending the rehearsal to be on time. Often there will be other rehearsals before or after yours or other services scheduled in the church.
It has been traditional for wedding couples to provide floral decorations for church on the day of their wedding. We encourage you to use fresh flowers with strong colors. Our church is large and ornamented; arrangements of white flowers and greenery tend to "disappear" in this large space.
Usually two large arrangements placed on either side of the altar will serve as beautiful and dignified decorations which everyone in church can see and will not interfere in any of the movements of the wedding party.
Please do not order any flowers to be placed upon the altar itself. The altar is meant to be kept very simple--with only the gifts of bread and wine, the book of prayers, and the chalice and paten on it.
Be sure to let your florist know if you are choosing to make a floral tribute to the Blessed Virgin Mary or are presenting flowers to members of your family.
Runner for the center aisle
If you wish to have a runner for the center aisle, this can be arranged through your florist. The center aisle is 65 feet long -- we suggest an additional 10 feet of runner.
If you choose to have bows or other decorations placed upon pews in the center aisle, please inform your florist that they are asked not to use tape on the wooden pews (it removes the finish). Alternatives to tape are usually available. Also, if you wish to drape ribbon along the edge of the pew, be sure the ribbon will be removed before the wedding begins. It is against fire regulations to block access to the pews in this or any other manner.
Photography & Videography
The still photographer may take pictures at any time as long as the wedding ceremony is not interrupted. The photographer is not allowed into the sanctuary of the church and should never stand between the couple and the congregation. Nor should any part of the ceremony (e.g., the procession up the aisle) be stopped by the photographer. Flash photography is acceptable. If time permits, the church is available for a maximum time of 30 minutes after the ceremony for the taking of pictures.
Please note: the photographer should never remove items from the altar or anywhere else before taking pictures. The time allowed will be shortened if there are other weddings or church services to follow. If the services start on time, there will be more than enough time for pictures. (All this is especially true for 3 pm Saturday weddings.) St. Josaphat Community Park behind the church is usually available for pictures during the appropriate seasons at no extra charge, again, subject to availability.
Video taping of the wedding is certainly permitted by a professional. We ask that the taping take place from one spot only and without a sustained high intensity lamp turning on and off. The videographer is not allowed to walk around with his or her equipment nor set up a camera in the sanctuary.
Please show these guidelines to the photographers so they are aware of the restrictions and abide by our rules. Then, tell them they too must touch base with the priest prior to the ceremony. These guidelines will help to make your ceremony more reverent, special, and prayerful. Photographers who do not follow rules will not be allowed to continue to photograph the wedding in church.
The Church fee is $950. It is a requirement that one of the parties be a registered parishioner of at least 4 months when arranging the date for the wedding. Please register with the parish before making arrangements for the wedding. Registration can be done at the parish office of online. Full payment of this fee is necessary to secure the date and time for your wedding. No wedding will be scheduled without full payment of this non-refundable fee because of the scheduling restraints of so many wedding requests. If there is any financial difficulty, a wedding ceremony can be arranged for little or no cost. An additional $25 rice fee must be paid if rice is to be thrown. This money will go to feed the hungry in our community. See the next section on wedding music for details on music fees. The church will provide altar servers for your wedding. We encourage you to make a small offering to the servers (between $10.00 and $15.00 for each server).
Rice, Washroom, etc.
You may have rice thrown after the ceremony outside the church itself. The altar servers will sweep it up afterwards but we ask that you make a $25 donation to be used to feed the poor. The only washroom available is in the front right-hand side of the church. There is no wedding room in this older church, and therefore, no place for the bride to dress. We do not supply stands, pedestals, extra candles, etc.
A FEW THOUGHTS ON CHURCH WEDDINGS
We ask that you remember that unlike a hall or a restaurant, the church is not "rented" for a wedding. As a place of worship it should be respected. It is also the symbol of the faith community before which you will be exchanging your vows. It should also be stated that the parish staff (priests, music director, altar servers, sacristans, etc.) is not employed by the couple getting married. Respect with regards to punctuality and decorum in the church is essential. Drinking of alcohol before the rehearsal or ceremony will lead to the expulsion of those drinking from the church. Failure to comply could mean the forfeiture of the privilege of marriage in St. Josaphat Church at the discretion of the priest at any point in the preparation or ceremony. The priest will deal only with the couple and not with parents or wedding coordinators to avoid any confusion or miscommunication. Yours is one of over 65 weddings celebrated at St. Josaphat this year. We expect your full cooperation. You are expected to be on time for the rehearsal and the ceremony. We will not delay the start of another ceremony in church because of a tardy start of yours. The church is open one half hour before the ceremony. All weddings have 90 minutes for the ceremony and picture taking.
Remember, it is the love shared between the couple that calls down God's presence in the Sacrament of Matrimony. You are the ministers of this beautiful sacrament. As you schedule and work on all the details, try to relax. The ceremony will be beautiful because the people in attendance are choosing to be there, drawn to the church by your love for each other. In the rush of things, take time for each other, support each other. We will do everything on our part to make your wedding a fitting and prayerful beginning to your Christian Marriage. Feel free to contact the rectory (773.327.8955) with any questions you might have.