Marriage FAQ at Gesu

For more information, contact

    Mike Heimbach, Director of Youth and Adult Formation
  • email Mike
  • 414-288-7412
  • Margi Horner, Director of Liturgy
  • email Margi
  • 414-288-6308
  • Dan Domrois, Director of Music
  • email Dan
  • 414-288-5289
  1. Who can be married at Gesu Parish?
  2. When is the church available for weddings?
  3. When is the church not available for weddings?
  4. We only want to get married at Gesu because it's a pretty church. Can we rent Gesu as a venue?
  5. Who is able to officiate at weddings at Gesu?
  6. May priests or ministers from other denominations participate in the wedding ceremony?
  7. What is the fee for weddings at the Church of the Gesu?
  8. Is a deposit required to reserve the church?
  9. How soon in advance of the wedding should a couple contact Gesu?
  10. If a couple wants to be married at Gesu Parish, how do they begin planning?
  11. Why are there so many rules about weddings at Gesu?
  12. My fiancée and I are too busy to plan our wedding liturgy. Can we have our parents work with you?
  13. Help! My parents/future in-laws are telling us how to plan our wedding liturgy.
  14. Can the bride have her own piece of music for processing in?
  15. We'd like to hire a brass or string ensemble to play at our wedding. Any thoughts on this?
  16. We'd rather have piano than organ at our wedding. Is this possible?
  17. Can the organist learn a piece of music for our wedding?
  18. Are there any pieces of music we cannot have?
  19. Can we include the text and/or notes for the songs in our program?

  1. Who can be married at Gesu Parish? (Back)

    At least one of the parties seeking to marry must be Roman Catholic and a part of the Gesu Parish or Marquette University community. Weddings of other denominations or faiths are not permitted. The church cannot be “rented” for a wedding.

    - Parishioners. Persons should be registered and active at Gesu six months before a wedding date is set.

    - Currently enrolled full-time students of Marquette University.

    - Alumni of Marquette University.

  2. When is the church available for weddings? (Back)

    Saturdays at 11:00am and 2:00pm.

  3. When is the church not available for weddings? (Back)

    - Days other than Saturday

    - During Lent (from Ash Wednesday through Easter Sunday)

    - During Advent

    - Any other time that the church has been scheduled

    - Any other time that the parish staff deems it necessary for no weddings to be scheduled

  4. We only want to get married at Gesu because it's a pretty church. Can we rent Gesu as a venue? (Back)

    No. There is no time at which the Church of the Gesu stops being a house of God. It is never “just a venue.”

  5. Who is able to officiate at weddings at Gesu? (Back)

    Our Gesu priests are willing to preside at weddings when they are available. It is the responsibility of the bride and groom to locate a priest or deacon to preside at their wedding.

  6. May priests or ministers from other denominations participate in the wedding ceremony? (Back)

    Weddings at Gesu Parish are celebrated according to the worship books of the Roman Catholic Church: the Sacramentary, the Lectionary and The Rite of Marriage. Ministers of other denominations may assist during the ceremony. This requires consultation with your presiding priest or deacon.

  7. What is the fee for weddings at the Church of the Gesu? (Back)

    There are two fee schedules at Gesu, one for parishioners and another for non-parishioners. The parishioner rate for a wedding is set in order to honor the commitment of participating, contributing members to the parish community. Normally speaking, the parishioner rate applies to those who have been registered and actively participating members for at least six months prior to scheduling.

    The fee helps defray the cost of the services of marriage preparation, the clergy, the musician, the liturgy assistant, the sacristan, as well as the cost of utilities such as heat, air-conditioning and electricity.

  8. Is a deposit required to reserve the church? (Back)

    A one hundred dollar deposit is required to reserve your wedding date. This deposit must be paid within two weeks of receiving your confirmation letter from the wedding scheduler. This deposit is non-refundable.

  9. How soon in advance of the wedding should a couple contact Gesu? (Back)

    Gesu is a very popular place for weddings. Many, many young people have come to know and love Gesu from their time at Marquette University. Thus, it is not rare to find Gesu being booked for a wedding a year to a year and half ahead of time - summer afternoon weddings especially tend to fill quickly. To check available dates, click here.

  10. If a couple wants to be married at Gesu Parish, how do they begin planning? (Back)

    Follow the steps found here.

  11. Why are there so many rules about weddings at Gesu? (Back)

    Regulations have been put place to protect the sanctity of the building and to maintain a level of organization with the many people who visit Gesu each year. The Gesu Parish Staff has a collective experience of what will work within our worship space and what will not. Although the guidelines may seem overwhelming and restricting, in the long run, they will assure you a wedding ceremony that will be breathtaking and unforgettable. It is the responsibility of the bride and groom to communicate all policies to those who will be involved in the wedding ceremony, including florists and photographers. All weddings at Gesu Parish must adhere to the established policies as outlined here: Wedding Information and Policies.

  12. My fiancée and I are too busy to plan our wedding liturgy. Can we have our parents work with you? (Back)

    The wedding liturgy has many choices for Scripture readings, prayers and music. These decisions should be made by you, to make the liturgy spiritually meaningful and personal to you. This liturgy is the start of your married life together. We feel strongly that you need to make time for planning it. While your families may have many good suggestions, our policy is to work directly with you, the bride and groom.

  13. Help! My parents/future in-laws are telling us how to plan our wedding liturgy. (Back)

    Decisions about your wedding liturgy should be made by you, to make it spiritually meaningful and personal to you. This liturgy is the start of your married life together. While your families may have suggestions or traditions, our policy is to work directly with you, the bride and groom.

  14. Can the bride have her own piece of music for processing in? (Back)

    In a word, no. The bride and groom are equal participants in the sacrament of marriage. A separate song for the bride would be contrary to this equality. The lectors, presider, attendants, groom and bride enter as a single procession, because we are forming one worshipping community. This is similar to the beginning of Sunday Mass, when everyone processes with the same song.

  15. We'd like to hire a brass or string ensemble to play at our wedding. Any thoughts on this? (Back)

    While there are many fine ensembles, hiring one for the church may not have quite the desired effect. A more effective alternative for instance, might be to hire a string ensemble to play during the dinner hour at the reception.

    The prelude time before the wedding is a great time for a brass or string ensemble to play, however, in our observation, most guests arrive at the church ten minutes or less before the wedding. Many use that time to greet relatives and friends they haven't seen “since the last wedding,” and the couples themselves are usually so absorbed with preparations and “in the moment” right before the wedding that the prelude generally passes right by them. An ensemble would be nice for the processional, and this is probably the time they'd be most noticed, although everyone's attention will be focused on the procession down the aisle. They could play something short during the Presentation of the Gifts, which lasts approximately two minutes. The recessional is usually accompanied by a bit of applause, and once the wedding party is down the aisle, guests typically leave the building. There is no receiving line at the church, so it empties quickly, usually in under five minutes. Organ and cantor will lead the assembly in singing the rest of the music.

  16. We'd rather have piano than organ at our wedding. Is this possible? (Back)

    A small amount of piano music might be possible. Depending on your music selections, the Music Director may permit some of the instrumental pieces to be played on the piano. You would need to provide your own pianist for this. Be forewarned, the piano will not fill the room with the same majesty as the pipe organ. The organ plays at every wedding, either alone or in ensemble with other instruments and singers in the choir loft, and is the appropriate instrument to support assembly singing.

  17. Can the organist learn a piece of music for our wedding? (Back)

    This depends on the piece of music. Gesu's organist might consent to learn a classical piece they want to add their repertoire of organ literature. The Music Director will work with the couple and the organist to determine feasability and whether an additional fee for the organist's time would apply. Ultimately, the organist's decision is final.

  18. Are there any pieces of music we cannot have? (Back)

    We will not use Wagner's Bridal March and Mendelssohn's Wedding March (A Midsummer Night's Dream). A few other pieces have been declined. Please contact our Music Director with any questions.

  19. Can we include the text and/or notes for the songs in our program? (Back)

    Because of copyright law, we do not allow printed music in wedding programs. Please reference the hymnal numbers for people to go to. The hymnal index is available here, starting on page 72.