How to Address a Reverend & Wife on a Mailing Envelope

Use the proper etiquette when addressing a reverend and his wife

Addressing envelopes for clergy and those who hold titles can be complicated, especially if you have circumstances that aren’t often dealt with. There are a few basic rules that you can follow when addressing a reverend and his wife. Use these rules as a basis if you stumble upon special cases and aren’t exactly sure of the proper protocol.

Make sure the reverend and his wife both have the same last name, and find out if the reverend’s wife has a job in which she holds a title as well, such as a doctor or a judge.

Write out the reverend’s full title, preceded by the word, “The.” For instance, write “The Reverend,” instead, of “Rev.” or simply, “Reverend.” The proper way to write a couple is to combine the names, just as you would if you were writing Mr. and Mrs. John Smith. So, the proper way to address an envelope to a reverend and his wife with the same last name is “The Reverend and Mrs. John Smith.”

Write the full spelling of just the word “reverend,” if the reverend holds two titles. For instance, if he were both a reverend and a doctor, you would write “The Reverend Dr. and Mrs. John Smith.”

Write the wife’s title if she holds the title as well. For instance, if the reverend is married to a doctor, write, “The Reverend and Dr. John Smith.” If the reverend’s wife does not have his same last name, write, “The Reverend John Smith and Ms. Jane Doe.”

Write more casual titles on the inside envelope, if included with your letter. For instance, simply write “Reverend John and Jane,” on the internal envelope for a more casual feel.

Melissa McKean is a freelance writer based in Milwaukee, Wis. McKean has an expertise in web and SEO copywriting and has worked on both B2C and B2B lead generation and e-commerce websites to improve search engine rankings and usability. McKean has a bachelor's degree in advertising from Kent State University.