The Chaplain's Office is currently booking Packer Memorial Church rentals for calendar year 2020 and for 2021! Certain dates may be held for possible university events which take precedence over outside reservations. The Packer Church is currently not accepting reservations for the month of July.
Please be aware that due to COVID19, no events are permitted on campus at this time, including any events in the Packer Memorial Church. There is no exact date when events will again be permitted. Please contact out office to review any perspective church reservations options.
Please read the following information carefully and then contact the office at 610-758-3877 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org to confirm if your preferred dates are available.
Office hours are Monday-Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Email and telephone reservation requests will be returned in the order in which they were received.
WHO MAY APPLY TO BE MARRIED IN PACKER MEMORIAL CHURCH
Lehigh students, alumni, faculty, and staff and their immediate family members which include children of faculty/staff/alumni, mother, father, sister, brother and grandparents.
Roman Catholic Weddings: in accordance with the Diocese of Allentown, brides and/or grooms must be graduates or current full time students of Lehigh University to be eligible for a Roman Catholic wedding. Children of faculty/staff are not eligible unless they are graduates of Lehigh. Faculty/staff who wish to marry Roman Catholic must currently be employed by Lehigh University. Further pertinent information in this regard is found in the clergy section of this information guide.
Couples Non-affiliated to Lehigh may reserve the Chapel, but must use the services of the University Chaplain, the Rev. Dr. Lloyd H. Steffen. If the Rev. Dr. Lloyd H. Steffen is not available, another officiant will be assigned or other consideration may be accepted as approved by the Rev. Dr. Lloyd H. Steffen.
The Packer Memorial Church is not available for non-religious wedding ceremonies by a judge or justice of the peace.
WHERE TO APPLY
Weddings will be reserved only through the Office of the University Chaplain using the RESERVATION REQUEST FORM or through visiting the chaplain's office at the Dialogue Center listed below at least 6 weeks prior to the desired rehearsal/wedding date. Please make sure to contact the Chaplain's office at 610-758-3877 to confirm that your requested date is available prior to submitting your reservation and payment.
APPLICATION FOR RESERVATION
- PROCESS: After confirming a date with the Chaplain's office, you please complete the RESERVATION REQUEST FORM and within that reservation for, or using this this debit or credit card payment link, you can complete your reservation payment. Your reservation date will not be secured until the reservation payment is made. A payment receipt will be sent to you when payment is made, but a separate reservation confirmation email will be sent to you from the Chaplain's office within 3-5 business days confirming all of the details you have requested in your reservation request.
- RESERVED TIME: Exact dates and times for the rehearsal and the ceremony must be stated to avoid conflicts with other scheduled events in the Church. Acceptance of a reservation guarantees a two-hour period, one hour which is understood to be the hour preceding the scheduled time of the service/ceremony. We must insist the wedding, including photogrphy, fit within your scheduled two hour (Roman Catholic Mass - two and a half) contracted rental time. Please inform your clergy person and photographer of these time restrictions. The Packer Memorial Church is open daily from 9:00am - 6:00pm during Lehigh's normal academic schedule. The Church is closed during vacation and semester breaks, and will be opened only by special arrangement with the Chaplain's Office.
- FACILITY NOTE: Packer Memorial Church is a University facility and as such the University calendar will take priority with respect to scheduling. On occasion the Chaplain's Office may hold final confirmation of requested dates until the University has announced its spring and fall events calendar. The Chaplain's Office will, however, make every effort to communicate notice of the likelihood of University events that may prevent confirmation. Occasionally, rehearsal times may be adjusted after the scheduled time. Applicants will be notified immediately should the situation arise.
- Fee Schedule
- UNIVERSITY FEES: University fees as outlined on the fee schedule must accompany the Reservation Application. These fees cover the cost to the University for supplies, application processing, and custodial services (custodial staff will be present at the rehearsal and wedding ceremony). Should the wedding service be cancelled and submitted in writing or by telephone call to the Chaplain's Office at least 2 weeks before the scheduled date half of the rental fee shall be refunded. There is a $100 fee to change the date of the reservation and the couple is responsible for notifying all parties of the change.
- CLERGY FEE: Lehigh University has set the minimum honorarium for all clergy performing weddings in Packer Memorial Church. Honorarium costs are outlined in the fee schedule but are subject to change. Efforts will be made to help couples locate alternative clergy if the University Chaplain is unavailable. The Chaplain's Office must be informed of the name, address and affiliated church of the officiante performing the wedding as requested on the reservation request form. The clergy honorarium should be paid in advance directly to the clergy at the ceremony rehearsal.
- MUSIC AND MUSICIAN FEES: Music is by the choice of the wedding party. A piano is available in the church as is the beloved Packer Memorial Church organ (restrictions apply - see below). Musicians and ensemble groups may be contracted at the will of the wedding party. Portable music devices supplied by the wedding party are permitted in the church, but please be aware that there is no piped in sound system in the church. Sound may be amplified, however, by microphones provided by the church custodial staff. Microphone placement should be coordinated with the custodial staff at the rehearsal.
- Organists must be chose from the offical organist list. Fees vary according to the musicians' time requirements and may vary. Music selections must be set in advance. When contacting organists, please make sure you have a clear understanding of teh music to be played, their fee and their attendance at the rehearsal. The organist or any musicians participation is the responsibility of the couple.
UNIVERSITY CHAPLAIN: Any couple that is affiliated with Lehigh University or not can requests to use the University Chaplain.
OUTSIDE CLERGY: Couples that are affiliated with Lehigh University may choose to select their own Clergy. Clergy persons not affiliated with Lehigh University must be licensed members of a fully recognized religious organization. Packer Memorial Church is not available for non-religious ceremonies conducted by a judge or justice of the peace.
ROMAN CATHOLIC: Any Roman Catholic Service or Service that involves a Roman Catholic - it is required that at least the bride or the groom MUST be an Alum, a current student, or a present employee of Lehigh University. There are no exceptions to this rule. Additionally, the bride and groom must inform the Coordinator of the Newman Center, Office of the Catholic Campus Ministry, 417 Carlton Avenue, Bethlehem, PA 18015 610-867-9382 - Mr. Ron Koach, who has been assigned by the Diocese of Allentown to serve the Lehigh University community. All Roman Catholics who wish to marry on campus are reminded that in roder to have their marriage recognized and approved by the Catholic Church they must comply with the Marriage Preparation Policy which is in effect in the Diocese of Allentown. This policy applies to all Catholics, even if they live in another diocese or wish to invite a priest other than the Catholic Chaplain to witness their marriage. The most immediate terms of this policy requires that the couple contat the Catholic Chaplain at least six months prior to the proposed wedding date. Failure to comply with the terms and fees of the Marriage Preparation Policy will jeopardize Catholic Church recognition and approval of your wedding.
The custodian has the complete Packer Memorial Church Schedule incuding all Rehearsals and Weddings. This will ensure that the Church is open and the custodial staff is avaiable during the rehearsal and wedding times requested. Our scheduling attempts to ensure adequated time for the custodial staff to prepare before, between and after events. Please adhere to your scheduled times for this reason. If you do believe you will need additional time for your ceremony, additional time can be purchased.
Most local florists are familiar with the inside of the Church. Customarily they furnish the white runner (100ft). Only free standing candles are permitted. All floral arrangements should be made directly with the florist. Advise your florist that delivery should be made at the rear of the Church in the sacristy. Flowers left for any length of time in the foyer are not guaranteed their security since the Church is open to the general public.
It is suggested that pictures not be taken during the ceremony itself. This matter should be discussed with the officiated clergy person who has the final decision. Outdoor photography is permitted at the Alumni Memorial Building Patio or at the water fountain in front of Packard Lab. Please be advised that the Presiden'ts driveway (located next to the Alumi Building walkway) is not to be obstructed by parking and he house and adjoining grounds are not available for your photos.
The pedestrian walkway between Packer Church and Packard Lab may ONLY be used by limosines to drop off and pick up the bridal party at Packer Church prior to and after the wedding.Limosine drivers must be mindful of the pedestian nature of this area and proceed slowly, with caution. With the closure of Packer Avenue, the required procedure for vehicles is to proceed South up Broadhead Avenue to a left onto Memorial Drive West, left onto the brick walkway - University Drive to Packer Memorial Church. Drop off, turn around and proceed back up the brick walkway - University Drive. Bear Right toward Memorial Drive West, but then turn left and continue onto University Drive back out unto Broadway Avenue. THIS link will also be very helpful. NO vehicles are permitted to park on campus under any circumstances as the campus is a pedestrian only campus. Only authorized vehicles are permitted on campus. Any vehicle parked for longer than drop off/pick up time will be fined or towed at the owner's expense. Metered spaces are available in metered spots or garage spots around the area as per the diagram.
IMPORTANT SPECIAL NOTES
- The Chaplain's Office is not responsible for personal or wedding tiems left in the Church during the contracted rehearsal and wedding times. This includes wedding candles, flowes, pew bows, fans, etc. All items to be kept or returned to a florist or rental company must be removed from the Church at the end of your contracted time.
- There are 20 rows of pews on each side, 8 rows of chairs with 8 chairs in each row in fron of the pews. These chairs cannot be removed - they are a permanent part of the Church. Pew bows can be attached with pipe cleaners, wrapped wire or ribbon, but NO TAPE or glue of any kind may be used.
- Dressing rooms for the bride are NOT AVAILABLE in the Church. It is suggest you arrive prepared for the ceremony. There is a single water closet located behind the altar in the church, but it is not conducive to Bride preparation. There is a room for the groomsmen to wait behind the chancel area toward the front of the church. These areas can be reviewed with you at your rehearsal time, or arrangements can be made to view the area in advance.
- Toilet facilites are available for guest access in Packard Lab - located directly across the walkway from the church.
- We ask that you do not request to have your pets as part of your ceremony. Guest who require documented service animals will be accommodated according to their needs.
- Rice, birdseed, confetti, flower petals or anything thrown is not permitted inside or outside of the Church, nor is a baloon release. However, bubbles, butterflies, and other items that do not require additional clean up are encouraged. An additional $50 clean up fee will be billed for additional custodial services as needed for non-compliance. We appreciate your cooperation.
- All candle holders used in the Church must have plastic beneath them, includeing candles that are considered "dripless". Candles that are free-standing in the aisle or attached to the pew in any way are not permitted. Guest are not permitted to light and hodl candles during the ceremony. Six candles are provided on the high altar and two candles on the portable altar for your wedding ceremony. All other candles must be provided by you or the florist, i.e., unity candles, tapers, etc.
- Alcohol of any kind (including champagne) is not permitted inside or on the grounds of the Church. We ask that your wedding party and guest do not consume alcohol on Church property during your contracted time.
- For invitation puposes, the correct name of the Church is Packer Memorial Church. The mailing address should read: Packer Memorial Church, 18 University Drive, Lehigh, University, Bethlehem, PA 18015. However, this address does occasionally give some GPS or phones a hard time. This link may be helpful.
- Summer Weddings: Please be advised that the church is not air conditioned. There are standing fans located in the church.
Links to important documents (also within the body of the information above)