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Question 124

Why do we have to have a civil wedding before a Church wedding.       

 

Answer to Question 124

 

This has to do with an old English law which only recognizes marriages performed in the Church of England. The Church of England is the official religion of England and all other churches are allowed to practice their religion only as a courtesy. Today there may be religious freedom, but the law still remains and so a civil marriage is performed first and this is the only marriage British law recognizes. In Cyprus we also advice people who come to Cyprus for their wedding to first have a civil marriage for this same reason. As Cyprus was once a British colony and is still part of the British Commonwealth, this law is still valid and the Orthodox Church marriage is not officially recognized by the English authorities.