Whether in our historic Chapel or in the Sanctuary, weddings are an honored celebration at Decatur First United Methodist. We believe weddings are a sacred service of worship, & all preparations are made with this consideration, including the music, photography & ceremony content. For information and/or reservations please contact Wedding Director Karen Edmunds 404-378-4541 to inquire about availability, procedures & fees. Non-members planning a Christian ceremony are welcome.


General Information

VENUE

Decatur First UMC has two lovely sites for your wedding--our historic Chapel on Sycamore Street and the Sanctuary on our main campus facing East Ponce de Leon Avenue.
Sanctuary: The columned, red brick, Georgian colonial sanctuary at 300 East Ponce de Leon Avenue, seats 1,100, has two main aisles leading to the altar area and a closed communion rail area.
Chapel: The stone Chapel at 318 Sycamore Street, with its Romanesque architecture, is located on the original 1823 land grant and dates back to 1899 with additions made in 1916 and 1922 and renovation in the 1980's. There is a center aisle with an angel window by Tiffany centered above the organ pipes. Seating accommodates 250 in the main area with the possibility of a few more seated in the East transept. There is a closed communion rail.

CLERGY

Our pastors may be contacted to schedule their services and any counseling sessions; however, guest clergy are welcome for both member and non-member weddings. The guest officiating minister will contact the Decatur First UMC Senior Minister to confirm arrangements.

MUSIC

All music should be in keeping with a sacred service. No secular texts or "pop" music should be planned. The Decatur First organist will be the only keyboard player (organ or piano). An appointment should be made with the organist at least two months prior to the ceremony to select your music. Other instruments or ensembles may be used instead of organ or piano. If soloists are needed, the Wedding Director or the musician can make suggestions. Pre-recorded music is not allowed in either the Chapel or the Sanctuary.

REHEARSAL

A one-hour rehearsal is scheduled the day/evening before the wedding.

WEDDING PLANNER

Decatur First's Wedding Coordinator will serve as the sole director of the rehearsal & ceremony. A wedding consultant or event planner is welcome to work with the wedding party in other capacities as needed.

FLOWERS

Both spaces are beautiful and photogenic without additional decoration. However, flowers, greenery & candles may be used, with great care taken not to damage any surfaces. The party reserving the space will be financially responsible for any damage incurred. No floral arrangements are to be placed on the communion table in either location. Floodlights may not be used in either location & flash photography is not permitted once the ceremony has begun. Time exposures are permitted from the balcony in each location.

MARRIAGE LICENSE

A marriage license must be presented to the presiding minister at the rehearsal or earlier. For information regarding license & blood tests, contact: DeKalb County 404-371-2746 or Fulton County 404-730-4692.

PARKING

For both locations, please park in the Commerce Drive lot. More information about general & accessible parking is available here.

BLACKOUT DATES

No wedding will be scheduled between Palm Sunday & Easter, or on Sundays. Additionally, because of the difficulties in securing adequate staffing, weddings will not be scheduled for the following days: New Year's Eve, New Year's Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, Independence Day or Labor Day.

VISITS

To visit the Chapel and/or the Sanctuary, please call the church at 404-378-4541 or stop by the main office (entrance located on N. Candler Street) between 9:30 AM & 3:00 PM. The Chapel remains locked through the week & is used by another congregation on Sundays. A key to the Chapel may be checked out from the office receptionist.


Once a wedding has been booked, the Wedding Director will mail a reservation form, including the Wedding Booklet containing all guidelines, as well as separate guideline handouts for each of your vendors. A list of recommended vendors will be included & a small location map for your convenience. Wedding bookings are not finalized until the reservation fee has been received. The Wedding Coordinator can be contacted at any time for further guidance or information.