Choosing the right Wedding Officiant is critical to creating a unique and personalized Wedding Ceremony. For those who belong to organized religions there will be requirements dictated by your faith. This article addresses questions purely for those seeking a non-denominational/non-religious ceremony. Aside from reading testimonials, checking out their web site, or better still, having seen them officiate at a friends wedding there are still some questions you need to ask to see if the Officiant is a good ‘fit’ for you.
Here are some questions that will help you with that process:
How long have you been officiating and who are you licensed through? You can verify this information at the Government of Ontario website where they list all licensed officiants.
What happens if you have a medical emergency on the day of the wedding?
Do you require counselling prior to or after the ceremony?
Are there restrictions on the time of day, location of ceremony or theme of wedding?
What does the Officiant typically wear, and how early before the ceremony do they come?
What is their fee for the ceremony you would like? Is there a deposit? When is the balance due?
Is a rehearsal included in their fee or extra?
How long is a typical ceremony and what is the process to put together the ceremony? Do we have choices of readings, music etc.?
How many face-to-face meetings and how many emails are included in your fees?
Are there any hidden fees?
What happens if the bride is 30 minutes late, or if there is a substantial delay. Is there more cost involved?
Do you attend the rehearsal dinner or wedding dinner?
Can we write our own vows?
Can we add a ritual to the ceremony? (ie winebox love letters, sand ceremony, hand fastening)
Can we include our children in the ceremony? Our parents? Our pets?
Is photography/videography allowed during the ceremony?
Is there a contract/letter of agreement to sign that commits not only you but the officiant to your wedding date and time?
These may sound like basic or silly questions but it is important that you and your officiant ‘clic’ for your ceremony. Meet with the officiant and if the questions are answered satisfactorily… hire them. If you would like to take time to think about your decision or if you don’t feel things are quite ‘clicking’ don’t be afraid to say so. Its your wedding day, and the ceremony should reflect you and your love.
Next blog I will answer these questions. In the mean time I wish you a “Happily Ever After”