For many couples, it's not important who officiates the wedding - as long as they are married! However, for others it's a personal decision and it has to be just the right person. If you're not sure who will officiate your wedding, here are some things you should probably consider.
Religious Preference -
Most couples who are members of a particular church or religious denomination will already have chosen an officiant to oversee their wedding ceremony. However, some couples may subscribe to a particular faith without belonging to a local church. In this case, you may want to contact a local authority belonging to a church which matches your beliefs. If you do this, be sure to ask whether you must be members of the church or religious organization in order for the authority to marry you.
Non-Religious Ceremony -
In the case of a non-religious ceremony, there are many options when it comes to who will officiate your wedding. For instance, you can hire a Justice of the Peace to oversee the wedding - and most of the time you can find one who will go along with your personal ceremony requests. If this is your plan, ask a friend or family member for a recommendation. This is a great way to make sure the Justice of the Peace you choose will be the best one for your ceremony.
Friends or Family -
A new trend in weddings is for the couple to be married by a trusted friend or family member. Through the Universal Life Church, anyone can receive the needed credentials to marry a couple. However, if this is the route you choose - there are a few other things to consider.
- If your friend or family member who will officiate your wedding has received credentials online, make sure you check them out. Even if they are legally able to marry a couple, there are state laws that must be adhered to. The last thing you want is to find out that your beautiful wedding wasn't actually legal!
- You also want to make sure that your friend or family member is able to marry you and your soon-to-be husband in the proper manner. The person who will officiate your wedding has a large effect on the overall mood and setting of the ceremony. Do a few rehearsals to be sure things are just the way you want them!
By deciding who will officiate your wedding well in advance, you can check it off your list of things to do - giving yourself the freedom to worry about the other important aspects of wedding planning.