With Pastor Bjorn Dixon Officiating
To the bride and groom, congratulations on your engagement! This is an overview of the steps in preparing and planning for your big day.
Your Preparation – The first thing you’ll want to do is schedule your first meeting with Bjorn. The process you’ll be starting with that appointment looks like this:
- 1st meeting with Bjorn: Getting to Know Each Other and Initial Wedding Details
- Take the FOCCUS Premarriage Inventory – you will each receive this via email.
- 2nd meeting with Bjorn: FOCCUS Inventory Results and Update Wedding Details
- 3rd meeting with Bjorn: Finish FOCCUS Inventory Results and Finalize Wedding Details
- Complete premarital education – recommended but not required – and receive your Educator’s Statement from Bjorn to take to your county government center. (See “About Premarital Education” for more information.)
- Apply for your marriage license at the government center. For Sherburne County: 13880 Business Center Dr NW, Elk River, MN 55330. Recorder’s office: 763.765.4420. www.co.sherburne.mn.us/recorder/vital/marriage.php – for further information.
Your marriage license is valid for 6 months. Please make sure you obtain your license from the government center at least 2 weeks before your wedding. The bride and groom must both be present and show valid photo identification (e.g., driver’s license). It is a good idea to pay for at least one additional copy of your marriage license as you may need it for updating documents with a name change, etc.
About Premarital Education
The standard cost of your marriage license is $115. However, if you complete 12 hours of premarital education, you qualify for the reduced rate of $40 – a savings of $75. Financial incentive aside, it is definitely worthwhile to invest the 12 hours of time in preparing for your marriage together. The three meetings with Bjorn are worth 2 hours per meeting, plus you can count the time spent taking the online inventory. To complete the remaining hours you may:
- attend a premarital workshop – I can point you in the direction of local options
- read or listen to a book about marriage and spend time in discussion – The 5 Love Languages (by Gary Chapman), The Marriage Book (by Nicky and Sila Lee), 31 Creative Ways to Love and Encourage Him/Her (by Jefferson and Alyssa Bethke), or another book approved by Bjorn
- grow in your spiritual life together – attend a worship service, read some Scripture, and/or pray together
- meet with a married couple whom you respect – ask them questions about what makes for a healthy and vibrant marriage
My Preparation – includes at least 10 hours of time for the following:
- 1st meeting: Getting To Know Each Other and Initial Wedding Details
- 2nd meeting: FOCCUS Premarriage Inventory and Final Wedding Details
- 3rd meeting: Finish FOCCUS Premarriage Inventory and Finalize Wedding Details
- Preparation of the ceremony and message
Honorarium – the suggested honorarium is $200 and is typically given at the rehearsal the day before the wedding. If the rehearsal/wedding is significantly far away from Elk River, please consider covering travel expenses (at your discretion).
More Than a Wedding – Whether you’re part of the WHY Church or we’re just getting to know each other, please know that this is about more than a wedding for me. This is a chance for us to make a lasting connection and to celebrate what God is doing in your life – on your wedding day and beyond. I look forward to our time together and will be praying for you. Again, congratulations!
Yours in Christ,
Bjorn Dixon, Pastor
Click here to email Bjorn // office at the Y: 763.230.2814