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Weddings at Fordham

Bride and Groom with CarCongratulations on your engagement!

We are happy that you have chosen to celebrate your wedding at our landmark Fordham University Church. Since the University Church is not a parish church, wedding preparations are somewhat different from those in a traditional parish.

The Rose Hill campus is located within the boundaries of the parish of Our Lady of Mercy on Marion Avenue, where your sacramental marriage will be registered. 

Choosing to have your wedding at the University Church signifies that Fordham holds a special place in your heart. We want to help you in your plans to make your wedding as beautiful, memorable, and uncomplicated a celebration as possible.  This will require your assurance to adhere to the guidelines in the booklet. We ask that you cooperate with us so that your family and friends may happily witness your deeply personal commitment to each other.

The office of Campus Ministry at Rose Hill is the department at Fordham University that handles marriage arrangements for the University Church. For reservations and all other matters concerning marriages here, please contact us by phone at 718-817-4336, or by email at weddings@fordham.edu.

Our best wishes and prayers as you begin preparations for your Catholic marriage at the Fordham University Church, and may God bless you both at this important time in your life.

Sincerely in Christ,

Rev. Mark C. Zittle, O.Carm.
Director of Campus Ministry, University Church Ministries

Scheduling Your Catholic Wedding

In keeping with the norms of the New York Archdiocese regarding where sacramental marriages may be celebrated, the Fordham University Church is permitted, by exception, to celebrate weddings only “if one of the parties is a current student, graduate, staff or faculty member” of Fordham University (or Fordham Prep) and with the consent of the couple’s home parish(es). You must schedule your marriage with the Office of Campus Ministry. We recommend that this be done at least a year or more in advance of the proposed day.

Marriages are scheduled in the church on Saturdays and Sundays (not Fridays, due to rehearsals) around liturgical celebrations and other University events. Because of University needs, some weekend dates are not available. The following times are available:

Saturdays: 12:00, 2:00, and 4:00 PM
Sundays: 2:00 PM

Marriages may not be scheduled on major holy days, particularly on Christmas or Easter, or during Holy Week. We are also unable to schedule marriage ceremonies during certain vacation periods.

The total cost of reserving the University Church for a wedding is $1,200.

Please call 718-817-4336 or email weddings@fordham.edu to schedule a date and time for your ceremony with Campus Ministry.

Reservations

Once you have spoken to the Weddings Administration team and found a tentative date that you wish to reserve the University Church, you will then complete and attach a non-refundable deposit of $200 made payable to Campus Ministry. Mail to:

Fordham University
Office of Campus Ministry Attn: Weddings
441 E. Fordham Road
Bronx, NY 10458

The date is confirmed when the non-refundable deposit of $200, has been received by the Office of Campus Ministry, the couple has had a Wedding Reservation Meeting with Sacristan John Gownley, and the couple has signed the required documentation to reserve the church. Meeting sign up information will be provided by Fordham Weddings Administration once a date has been decided on. Once these steps are all completed a Couple's Portfolio email with all the necessary information to plan a wedding at the University Church will be sent to you.

Interview

Once couples have found a date they are interested in, they will be asked to have a wedding reservation meeting with Sacristan John Gownley to discuss the marriage preparation process. 

As of Fall 2020, all meetings are being conducted via zoom. Couples will receive further information about how to sign-up for a time from Wedding Administration once they have picked a tentative date. 

Preparation Overview

  • Book wedding date at least six months in advance with Campus Ministry at 718-817-4336 and schedule a wedding reservation meeting with Sacristan John Gownley by contacting the weddings administration team at weddings@fordham.edu.
  • The cost of reserving the University Church for a wedding will be $1,200. Mail in $200 deposit and completed reservation form to confirm date.
  • 6 Months Prior to Wedding
    • Confirm Officiant and notify our wedding interns at weddings@fordham.edu
    • Begin to collect and submit required documents
  • 4 Months Prior to Wedding
  • 2 Months Prior to Wedding
    • Mail in Sacramental documents (Baptismal, Communion, Confirmation), Permission to Marry Form, and completed Pre-Nuptial Interview (PNI)
    • Submit Final payment ($1,000) and Late Fee Check ($150)
  • Mail in all musician payments one month in advance
  • Attend rehearsal and wedding at the scheduled time

Required Marriage Documents

The Archdiocese of New York requires the following in order to have a Roman Catholic marriage at the Fordham University Church. You are responsible for obtaining the documents. Each, with the exception of the civil marriage license, must be completed and returned to the Office of Campus Ministry at least two months before the scheduled date of the ceremony. The priest or deacon who is to officiate at your wedding may help you prepare and assemble these documents. The couple must send these completed documents to the Office of Campus Ministry at least two months prior to the wedding. Having proper documentation ensures that the sacrament of marriage may be performed.

  • An updated original Baptismal Certificate for both the bride and groom. This certificate must be secured no more than six months prior to the wedding and can be obtained by calling or writing the parish of your baptism. It must be stamped with the seal of the parish and dated within six months of the wedding. If you are a baptized non-Catholic and a certificate can be obtained, please do so.
  • Catholics must obtain updated First Communion and Confirmation data from the parish where sacraments were celebrated. This documentation must show the date of reception of these sacramants, be stamped with the seal of the parish and be dated within six months of the wedding.
  • A letter from either the bride or groom's pastor giving permission for the wedding to take place at the Fordham University Church. A "Permission to Marry" form is included in Couple's Portfolio email.
  • A civil marriage license, which should be brought to the rehearsal. The marriage license must be obtained from the State of New York within 60 days prior to the marriage.
  • A Pre-Nuptial Interview (PNI) form completed by the priest or deacon officiating at the marriage or by your parish priest. We will send this form to the officiating priest or deacon. This form must be returned to the Office of Campus Ministry when completed--no later than two months before the date of the marriage.
  • A certificate, or its copy, stating that you both have attended an approved marriage preparation program (Pre-Cana). Participation in such a program is required, and information concerning program availability within the Archdiocese of New York can be obtained directly from the Archdiocese of New York or by calling 212-371-1000.
  • If there has been a previous marriage, a death certificate or a "Declaration of Nullity" must be obtained.
  • If either the bride or groom is under 21 years of age, a letter from a pastor, parent or other relative stating that you are "free to marry" must be obtained.

Officiating Deacon or Priest

Each marriage is unique. Some marriages may require additional attention by the engaged couple and whoever is preparing both parties to celebrate this sacrament. We strongly recommend that you contact your pastor or the priest or deacon who is to officiate at your wedding, as soon as possible to discuss with him your plans for marriage. It is the sole responsibility of this priest or deacon to assist you in gathering the required documents and to assume other responsibilities as well. The officiant is responsible for all components of marriage preparation and is expected to be present for both the rehearsal and wedding. The Office of Campus Ministry will send an Officiant Portfolio via email to the presider, outlining the requirements.

Responsibilities of an Officiant Include:

  • Completing a dispensation form, in the case of a planned marriage of mixed religion, included in Officiant Portfolio email. Please notify our office in advance if any of these conditions apply. If you require additional information regarding annulments, the necessary dispensations from:

    Marriage Tribunal
    Archdiocese of New York
    1011 First Avenue
    New York, NY 10002
    Phone: 212-371-1000
  • Obtaining civil registration to conduct a wedding in the City of New York. This is extremely important. The easiest way to register is through the Chancery Office, which can be reached at the same address or phone number as the Marriage Tribunal. If the officiant has previously conducted a wedding in the City of New York, he should already be registered.
  • Assisting you both in planning the marriage liturgy, using the booklet Together for Life (Champlin), which is supplied by the Office of Campus Ministry.
  • Assisting you in completing the Pre-Nuptial Interview form, which Campus Ministry will provide for the priest or deacon.
  • Obtaining delegation from the pastor of Our Lady of Mercy, which is Fordham University's parish. A template of an email to the Pastor of Our Lady of Mercy is included in the officiant's portfolio. The pastor will contact the officiant directly to grant delegation. Then, your officiant must forward a copy of email granting delegation to weddings@fordham.edu.
  • Attending the wedding rehearsal. While Fordham's marriage minister will conduct the rehearsal, the presence of the officiant helps to ensure a trouble-free ceremony at the actual wedding.
  • Completing and signing the civil marriage license on the day of the wedding. The completed license will be mailed to the City Clerk's Office by the Office of Campus Ministry after making copies for our files. The Office of Campus Ministry will also register the marriage at Our Lady of Mercy parish and send the couple a marriage certificate. All documents will be filed at Our Lady of Mercy. If the information is needed in the future, please contact Our Lady of Mercy directly.

Planning Your Rehearsal and Wedding Day

Liturgy 

Planning Catholic Wedding Liturgy
Planning your wedding ceremony is an important part of celebrating your sacramental marriage. 4 months prior to your wedding, please contact Kathryn Anderson Kuo at kanderson26@fordham.edu to begin completing the Wedding Liturgy Planner. Using this document, Kathryn Anderson Kuo will assist you in organizing the structure of the ceremony, from the Processional to Recessional. This includes, selecting scripture readings, writing prayers of the faithful, assigning gift-bearers, and organizing other details that will make your ceremony more personal. The ceremony is also a wonderful opportunity for guests to participate in the wedding as Ushers, Lectors, Gift-bearers, and Eucharistic Ministers. Completing the Wedding Liturgy Planner ensures that the Campus Ministers who will assist you on the day of your wedding will have all of the information they need to make your day go smoothly.
Rehearsal 

Couples should come prepared and on time for the marriage rehearsal, bringing along the readers, gift-bearers, ushers, and anyone else involved in the marriage ceremony. The organist and musicians do not attend wedding rehearsals. The marriage license obtained from the state of New York (obtained within 60 days of the wedding) must also be brought to the rehearsal. You may bring the programs and other items for the ceremony as well, and we will lock them in the safe overnight. Rehearsals are usually scheduled on the Thursday or Friday before the wedding date at 5 PM, 6 PM, or 7 PM. You may make arrangements for the rehearsal time when you book your wedding or soon thereafter. The time is booked in the order received.

A trained student marriage minister will conduct the rehearsal for your wedding party and direct all proceedings on your wedding day. Please respect the authority of the University Church staff and follow these directions. It is best if all members of your wedding party and the officiant performing your marriage attend so that all will be comfortable with their respective roles. Make sure to bring your civil marriage license with you to the rehearsal.


Decorations

Floral Displays
Floral arrangements and other appointments must work around the furnishings of the University Church. Church furnishings and liturgical decorations are not to be moved. All arrangements for your marriage ceremony must be set a one-half hour before your ceremony. Such arrangements might include bouquets of flowers, bows for center aisle benches, or a "unity candle" on the altar (all provided by you). Torches are not allowed. Runners are not allowed. The University Church is a designated New York City landmark, and as such, we must take special precautions.

Photography and Video 

Professional photographers should be as inconspicuous as possible throughout the ceremony. Videotaping that requires additional lighting or wiring is not permitted. In most cases, the ordinary light of the church should suffice. Photographers using extra lighting will be asked to remove the equipment. Photographers are not allowed in the sanctuary behind the altar, or on the steps or choir loft. No photographers, professional or amateur, will be permitted to interrupt or delay any part of the ceremony, nor will they be allowed to delay preparations for a subsequent ceremony.

No drones are allowed on campus and/or inside the church under any circumstances.


Directions to the Church 

A map with detailed directions on how to reach Fordham’s Rose Hill campus and the University Church will be included in the Couple's Portfolio email sent from the Office of Campus Ministry. If you would like, you will need to make copies for your guests. We are not able to make copies.

GPS Address and Parking
The Fordham University Church is not a parish. We do not have a dedicated parking lot adjacent to our church.
For both the rehearsal and wedding itself, the security guards at Fordham’s main entrance (off Southern Boulevard, opposite the New York Botanical Garden, GPS address: 2691 Southern Boulevard, Bronx, NY 10458) will have the bride and groom’s names and will inform your wedding party and guests of the parking arrangements. There is no additional cost for guests to park on campus. Guest parking will be determined that day. The bride’s limousine will park in front of Martyrs’ Court so that she may walk up the main pathway to the front of the church.

Should your guests need to park in the main parking garage near the Southern Boulevard entrance, assistance will be provided for persons with mobility issues. Please ask the security guard to call a car to transport any physically challenged guest. Every effort will be made to ensure guest parking for your wedding at University Church is as convenient as possible.

Before you hire any buses for your guests, you must speak with Public Safety and Security to ensure the buses can be accommodated (718-817-2222).

Music

Please click the link here for more information regarding music for your wedding at Fordham. 

FAQ

Please click the link found here to see FAQs regarding marriages in Fordham's University Church.