On your wedding day you look forward to so much, but the biggest thing you look forward to is the " I Do." The one to make that official is the officiant! Here are some helpful pointers and things to think about when it come to the man or woman in charge of your ceremony. First things first, there are four types of officiants:
1) RELIGIOUS-- someone who is ordained by a religious denomination
2) CIVIL-- a civil officer of the court such as a justice of the peace
3) PROFESSIONAL-- pretty self explanatory, they officiate weddings for a living and are not necessarily tied to any particular religion
4) FRIEND OR FAMILY-- The final type of officiant that can be used. If you are using a friend or family member, make sure they follow all the steps required by your local city and state in order to make the wedding legal.
The following are 10 questions to ask when looking for your perfect officiant:
1. Will you hold a religious (spiritual) or secular (non-religious) ceremony?
2. Have you budgeted for a wedding officiant? Some officiate weddings free of charge if they have a close connection to the bride or groom and their families, while others will charge for their services.
3. What are your expectations of the officiant?
4. Will you follow a traditional order of service according to your faith or create your own service?
5. Will your wedding venue play a role in an officiants availability?
6. Will you be required to attend premarital counseling?
7. What happens if the officiant cancels at the last minute?
8. Is experience an important factor in selecting a wedding officiant?
9. Will the officiant perform your ceremony if you are not married in his/her church?
10. Will your wedding day affect the availability of certain officiants?
The officiant is a huge part of your big day and they need to be someone you are comfortable with and who is comfortable with you. Take your time and meet with many officiants until you find the right one for you and your partner.