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Chapel Use Policies

Evelyn ChapelOfficiants

Weddings may be performed by clergy who are ordained and in good standing within his or her denomination. Visiting clergy must provide their own vestments and any other liturgically related items (i.e., chalice and paten for communion). Be sure to contact your clergyperson soon, as there are meetings which most clergy require beginning months before your wedding. The University Chaplain does not preside at weddings for couples unaffiliated with the University, but can preside at weddings for affiliated couples, if their schedule allows. 


The couple must meet all the requirements of the State of Illinois and supply the officiant with the Marriage License. It is the officiant's responsibility to make sure that all appropriate information is completed and sent to the County Clerk's office.


University events have priority over the scheduling of ceremonies and rehearsals; however, once confirmed, a wedding will not be "bumped" because of a university event.  Given our academic calendar, there will be blackout dates each year for Orientation, Homecoming, and Commencement.  

No more than three ceremonies will be scheduled on any given weekend at Evelyn Chapel, and not more than two in one day. Each couple is only allowed three hours of chapel space to complete their ceremony, pictures, and whatever else is needed. The given three hours that will be reserved for each ceremony may be scheduled for one of the following blocks of time. If our calendar allows, additional time may be booked at a prorated fee. Additional time must be booked in advance to avoid conflicts with other scheduled events; use of the Chapel outside of scheduled times will result in additional fees.


10:00a.m. to 1:00p.m.

2:00p.m. to 5:00p.m.

6:00p.m. to 9:00p.m.

Sundays and weekdays:

by request, as schedule allows

Chapel staff finds that starting a ceremony no later than one and half hours into the time slot provides adequate time for guest dismissal, final pictures, and clean up prior to the end of the scheduled three hours.

One hour will be reserved for the rehearsal. Rehearsals take place between the hours of 5:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. Officiants should be present at the rehearsal. The provided IWU Ceremony Coordinator will be present at the rehearsal to help facilitate and answer any questions that arise.

Officiant Fee

Most couples provide their own ordained minister as officiant for ceremonies, and pay that person directly. The University Chaplain is available, when her schedule allows, to preside at weddings for IWU-affiliated couples. This fee is $250 and includes pre-marital counseling, planning, rehearsal, and service, and is due two weeks before the wedding.  This fee is paid directly to the University Chaplain.

Cancellation Fee

In the event that you cancel your wedding reservation for any reason, you will be refunded your Chapel fee, minus a $200 cancellation fee, up to six weeks before the scheduled ceremony.

Confirmations and Changes

Once the application has been processed and approved, you will be emailed a letter of confirmation. Should there be any changes in the information you have provided, please notify the Conference Services Office. Once your wedding is scheduled and confirmed, changes will be considered, but cannot be guaranteed.

Building Decorum

The location of the pews may not be changed. The set up of the Chancel (i.e., altar area) may be changed, with exceptions. Unless requested otherwise, the Chancel contains the altar, lectern, and piano. The space is relatively small so we ask all parties to plan accordingly.

Adhesive tape and tacks may not be used to hang pew markers or ribbons. Please inform your florist. No markings of any kind are allowed on the Chancel area.  Items suspended in any way from the balcony must be approved in advance. Please reach out to us at if you have any questions regarding decorations!

Evelyn ChapelHelpful information

  • The Chapel seats approximately 215 people.
  • The Chapel includes 14 rows of pews and chairs in the balcony.
  • The length of the aisle is approximately 45 feet by 3.5 feet.
  • The Chapel can provide kneelers.
  • Two small and two large flower stands are available.
  • There is a room downstairs in which the party may wait or dress.
  • The Chapel is handicapped accessible.
  • The Chapel has air conditioning.
  • There is one bathroom in the lower level and one bathroom in the upper level.
  • Drugs and alcohol are prohibited throughout the Chapel building and on all outdoor property of Illinois Wesleyan University.
  • Rice, bird seed, confetti, etc. may not be thrown in, or in front of, the Chapel.
  • Real flower petals are not allowed to be thrown down the aisle. If artificial petals are thrown, the wedding party is responsible for collecting these before they depart the Chapel.
  • Enclosed candles may be used in the Sanctuary (no open flames)
  • There is an organ and a piano in the Chapel; use will be arranged with our University Organist.  Though outside musicians are welcome, pre-recorded and electronically amplified music is not allowed in the Chapel.
  • The Chapel is not wired for sound; the Sanctuary was built acoustically to not require a sound system.


Photos in the Sanctuary should be completed thirty minutes before the ceremony begins.  However, pictures may be taken outside and in other areas of Evelyn Chapel during this time.  Any flash photography or videography during the wedding ceremony is only permitted with consent from the Officiant.

Under no circumstance are photographers, wedding party, or guests allowed on the catwalk underneath the cross. This is a safety hazard and is prohibited.

Please note that Illinois Wesleyan University does not allow the use of drones on our campus.


Ceremony day parking is complimentary to you and your guests. Upon availability, the University parking facility behind the Chapel and behind the Welcome Center may be used.

Additional Information

Evelyn Chapel is not responsible for items that are lost, stolen, left behind, or broken. To insure safety of your personal items, you may request to lock property in the Ceremony Coordinator's office. Please keep in mind that this is a college campus and the Chapel is open from 8:00 am to 11:00pm every day during the academic year.