The decision on who will preside over your ceremony is a big one! It's nice to know your choices before going in. Keep in mind, there is no wrong choice as long as you're happy and married <3
There are four types of officiants who can legally perform your ceremony:
Couples that come from a religious background often ask their religious leader to preside over their ceremony at their place of worship. All Ministers, Pastors, Priests, Rabbi and Imam can perform wedding ceremonies as part of their services to the church, mosque or temple. Usually, there is no charge for their services but as a member, most of the congregation donates to the religious entity already. Religious leaders may require pre-marital counseling, have certain restrictions regarding the worship space and ceremony and usually do not allow couples to create their own script.
Judges and Justice of the Peace perform wedding ceremonies at the County Courthouse. Most often, couples who elope will use this option since there is little to no planning involved. The script is a simple ceremony provided by the courthouse and is performed only at their location. There isn't much flexibility but it is a great option for those getting married abroad or just want a quick wedding.
3. Asking a Friend/Family Member
In recent years, it has become more popular to ask a close friend or family member to perform the ceremony. It is a nice honor to bestow upon someone you love and may be very meaningful but also puts alot of pressure on them! They may be just as emotionally charged about it as you, so make sure it's someone who can handle it. Also, make sure they do their research beforehand to go through proper channels since requirements are different in each state, know the ins and outs of the marriage license and are comfortable with public speaking!
Professional officiants allow the flexibility to make the ceremony a reflection of you. Ceremonies range from religious, to non-denominational, to interfaith, to non-religious. We travel to you instead of requiring you to come to us, opening up more even possibilities! We can craft a script that includes multiple faiths, specific readings or passages, the story of your love, and so much more. And if you're not sure what you want, we have many past ideas and examples we can share with you. We know how to change wording on the fly (if necessary). We can direct and organize the rehearsal so everyone knows the timeline, the best way to stand for the pictures, the tempo of the walk, the timing, etc. We have experience collaborating with other wedding vendors for a smooth process and may be able to recommend some to you that we consider to be of excellence. We are a grounded, calming presence on your wedding day to remind you to not lock your knees, take a deep breath and smile. We can help you from our personal experiences and of course, are very familiar and comfortable with the whole process.