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Stanford Memorial Church Open Visiting Hours begin September 19, 2022. More info HERE.
The Church continues to be open for scheduled religious observances, weddings, memorials, concerts, and events.
For more information, please see our listing of events.

Banner image featuring a macro shot of a bride underneath her veil, via Freepik Licensed through Student Affairs.

Wedding FAQs

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Current COVID Guidelines

Q: What are the current COVID guidelines for guests?

A: Vaccination and negative COVID test verification is not required for entry. 

     Face masks are not required, but strongly recommended.

     Individuals should not attend events if they are feeling ill or symptomatic.

Calendar/Waiting List

Q: How long is the waiting list?

A: We don’t have a waiting list.  It’s first come, first served and dates are subject to availability.

Q: When does the new calendar open up?  How far in advance can you book a wedding date?

A: In January 2022, we opened up the calendar for 2023.  In January 2023, we will open up the calendar for 2024, etc. There is a 3 month minimum preparation time required for non-Catholic weddings. There is a 6 month minimum preparation time required for Catholic weddings.

Items at the Church

Q: Is there a table we can use for reception and guest book-signing?

A: Yes. There is a rectangular table in the vestibule of the Church that is available for use. The Church does not provide a tablecloth or table decorations, but couples are welcome to bring their own.

Q: Are flower arrangements and decorations allowed in the Church?

A: Yes.  However, the church is a very large and very busy space, so less is more.  We do not allow cloth runners and we do not allow anything, such as flower petals, etc. to be tossed on the floor. Flower arrangements are restricted to the Chancel area of the Church. They are not allowed in the Church vestibule due to space constraints. Arrangements may be placed on the Chancel, on the marble banisters, and on the high altar. Pew decorations are also permitted. All flowers must be removed from the church after your ceremony.

Q: How can we secure pew decorations to the ends of the pews?

A: You may use materials including clips, rubber bands, and twist-ties to secure pew decorations. Tape, glue and/or other adhesive materials are not allowed because they may damage the wood.

Q: When can our florist arrive to start decorating the Church?

A: The florist can arrive one hour before your ceremony time to set up any decorations, no earlier. They should come to the Round Room to unload.

Q: Does the Church provide candles for the chancel alcoves and the unity candle?

A: Yes. Memorial Church provides the alcove candles, as well as the unity candle and two side candles for the unity candle. Alternatively, you are welcome to bring your own unity candle and side candles.

Directions

Q: Where can I find driving directions to Memorial Church?

A: Driving directions to the Church are located on our website: Memorial Church Directions.  A interactive map of the University campus can be found at http://campus-map.stanford.edu

Guests

Q: Where can guests park for the wedding ceremony?

A: Guests can park in the Oval at the top of Palm Drive in either the permit or metered parking spots on the weekends. Alternatively, if guests are familiar with the campus, they can park along Santa Teresa Street or in the parking lot behind Tresidder Union. Permit and metered parking is free on the weekends. Please note that finding parking and walking to/from the Church may take some time.

Q: Can guests take photos during the ceremony?

A: No. Only professional wedding photography is allowed during the ceremony.

Music

Q: May we have a friend/family member perform a musical piece at our ceremony?

A: All questions regarding music during a wedding ceremony in Memorial Church must be directed to the University organist, Robert Huw Morgan. He can be reached at 650.725.0530 or by email (rhmorgan@stanford.edu).

Vendor List

Q: Do you have a list of preferred/recommended vendors?

A: No. We do not keep a list of vendors or reception sites.  However, most of the local photographers and florists have done many weddings here.

Rehearsal

Q: What should we bring to the rehearsal?

A: You need to bring your marriage license, programs (if applicable) and candles for unity candle.

Q: How long is the rehearsal?

A: The rehearsal will last for one (1) hour. You must show up on time as no extra time will be allotted for the rehearsal if you are late.

Q: What do we do at the rehearsal?

A: We will run through the entire ceremony and the processional. You will also receive instructions on parking for the wedding party and information on the bride and groom’s respective rooms. The rehearsal is also the time to clarify any last details with the Wedding Coordinator and Clergy regarding the ceremony.

Q: I’ve attended the wedding orientation with the Wedding Coordinator and finished my counseling, now what?

A: Look at the wedding preparation checklist and timeline in your wedding information packet. For non-Catholic wedding couples, the next step is to select and confirm your Stanford clergy once you receive the Stanford Wedding Clergy Directory from the Wedding Coordinator. For Catholic wedding couples, please continue completing the canonical preparation with the Director of Canonical Wedding Preparation for the Catholic Community at Stanford and meet with your clergy once they are assigned to you. 

Main Quad

Q: Can we have a receiving line?

A: No

Q: Can we throw anything outside?

A: No. Nothing is to be thrown – flower petals, rice, birdseed, glitter, confetti, etc.

Q: How about bubbles?

A: No.

Q: While we’re taking pictures, can we have a table set with refreshments for our guests?

A: No.

Timing on the Day of Wedding

Q: How long do we have the church reserved?

A: Each wedding reservation is two hours and thirty minutes. E.g., if you have a 10 AM wedding, your reservation will be from 9 AM - 11:30 AM.  By 11:30 AM, you must be out of the church and not be in front of the church taking pictures after that time.  You can still take pictures on the sides of Quad, but are asked to be sensitive to the next wedding and not obstruct their time/space.

Q: When will we be finished with the ceremony?

A: If it is a non-Catholic ceremony, you will be finished at approximately 30 minutes after the hour.  If it is a Catholic non-mass ceremony, then it will be closer to 35 minutes after the hour.  If it is a Catholic mass ceremony, it will be closer to 45 minutes.  The timing in the Catholic ceremonies is more fluid – you should discuss this with your priest.

If you don’t see your question on this list, please contact the Memorial Church Wedding Coordinator.