The use of flowers and other symbols is intended to add to the festivity of the wedding celebration. In a Cathedral building, such as the Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart, flowers are permitted as part of the wedding environment, as long as they do not distract from the focus of the wedding (the exchange of consent) and do not cause danger of falling, and/or damage to the building or furnishings. Church furnishings and liturgical decorations may not be changed or moved.
The following policies are in place to ensure the appropriate placement and use of flowers, candles, and other symbols. By signing a contract with the Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart for one's wedding, the couple gives their written acknowledgement and consent to these policies and will be held accountable to following them.
- Flowers may be used in the designated areas (see diagram attachment) except during Advent and Lent. Flowers may be placed on the pedestals in the back of the sanctuary; on the floor in front of the candelabra if used, or one on the floor on either side of the front steps of the sanctuary. These are the only places in the sanctuary that flowers may be placed.
- Flowers/greenery and/or bows may be placed on the first pew only, on either side of the center aisle using only special floral hangers. The use of tape, staples, glue, etc. on the pews or any other furnishing is not permitted.
- Artificial flowers, including silk or plastic, are not permitted.
- It is customary to leave the flowers in the church for weekend Masses. If you choose to donate your flowers, you may request a letter for tax purposes. You may share your flowers (and expense) with others being married on the same day. To arrange this, consult the parish secretary.
- Flowers for the Blessed Virgin Mary may be presented after the exchange of vows and rings by BOTH Bride and Groom together.
UNITY CANDLE/OTHER SYMBOLS: Remember, the focus of your marriage ceremony is your consent and the exchange of vows and rings. Other symbols may possibly be used, as long as the focus is maintained on the consent & are not opposed to Catholic belief and teaching.
- Unity candles are not part of Catholic ritual. However, if the unity candle and/or candelabra are used, the parish owned unity candle stand must be used and the couple must provide their own marriage candle itself and floral decorations for the stand.
- No aisle stanchions, lanterns, or candles of any sort and no white aisle runners are permitted.
- Couples may observe the Hispanic tradition of the lazo with the arras (coins) and the Catholic bible/rosary. However, only the unity candle or lazo may be used; not both. The use of these symbols occur after the exchange of rings or after flowers to Mary. With the lazo tradition, those who present the arras, bible/rosary and lazo are seated in the assembly prior to the wedding and will be called up when it is time to present the symbols; they do not process in with the liturgical procession.