She'll have you on your way to that rehearsal dinner in no time.

By Patricia Shannon
Mother of Groom with Bridesmaids
Credit: Dave Mathias/The Denver Post via Getty Images

Disclaimer: Not all churches have wedding coordinators. If you're getting married in a church that has weddings fairly often, if not every weekend, chances are they'll have a church wedding coordinator. Here's a timeline of church wedding coordinator responsibilities—from helping you schedule your wedding to sending you down the aisle on your big day.

1 Year to 6 Months Prior

The wedding coordinator might be the first person you contact after getting engaged (aside from Mama, of course). She oftentimes helps book the church, helps schedule the priest or pastor, and gives the couple a tour of the church if desired. Even if you've been going to the same church for the past 25 years, you'll want the wedding tour. She'll show you where the bride room is and where your soon-to-be-husband and the groomsmen will gather before the ceremony. She'll also help you figure out a timeline for the wedding day, schedule your rehearsal, and help you put together all the elements of your ceremony including readings, music, and procession order. Additionally, she'll know what décor elements the church already has (candelabras, candles, aisle runners, flower stands, etc.) and help you figure out what kind of rentals and floral arrangements you'll need and how many. You'll want to give your coordinator's name and contact information to your photographer, videographer, florist, and all other day-of vendors. It's likely your church will have certain guidelines for photography and videography during the ceremony. Your coordinator will relay any pertinent information to them.

The Rehearsal

As any experienced bride will tell you, you don't want to find yourself without a rehearsal coordinator—whether it's your church wedding coordinator, a wedding planner, a relative, or friend. She'll carry out your wishes for the ceremony from the processional order to tutoring ushers on how to greet guests and where to seat them. She'll make sure you and your husband-to-be have your marriage license ready to go for the next day as well as answer any last minute questions you might have. Most importantly, she'll make sure you're out the door and on your way to a night of merriment at your rehearsal dinner as soon as possible—with strict timeline for the next day's church festivities.

Your Wedding Day

While you're primping with your girls the morning of your wedding, she'll already be halfway through her church wedding coordinator checklist. She'll open the church for the florist, photographer, videographer, and any other vendor that will need to set up prior to the ceremony. Once you get to the church, the church wedding coordinator duties continue with ensuring your bride room is stocked with plenty of water and tissues. She'll see that the groom, groomsmen, and all other parties are in place. She'll even run interference just in case your fiancé tries to steal a peek before you walk down the aisle. Once it's time for the ceremony to begin, she'll cue the music, the officiant, and everyone involved in the processional. She'll be there to help if any last minute issues arise. Hopefully, everything will go smoothly and once she sends you down the aisle her hard work will be complete.

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Additional Things to Remeber

  • Many times, the church wedding coordinator is a volunteer so be courteous of her time and grateful for her help. Brief your wedding party beforehand and ask them to be on their best behavior.
  • Introduce your wedding planner to the key players before the rehearsal starts. MOB might already be well acquainted, but this is most likely a first meeting for the groom's family and the bridal party. You'll want everyone to know who to look to for any and all ceremony-related questions.
  • Definitely include your church wedding coordinator in your list of post-wedding thank you notes—particularly if your large Southern bridal party was a bit on the rowdy side.