Many couples that have relationships with a place of worship and with a pastor will get married in that place of worship and probably with that pastor. Times have changed. We know that up to 70% of the population does not attend worship on a regular basis. For some individuals and couples, they do not have a “family church” or a relationship with clergy. So what options are available for couples who are wanting to get married?
The good news is that there are options! The word officiant has been around for a long time to describe those who might perform a wedding ceremony or other rite of passage. It has only been since the mid to late 80’s that Officiants has been recognized as a profession outside of a place of worship or church.
There are no standards for Officiants. Some are ordained online through a website (and as such, in most cases, are legally authorized to perform wedding ceremonies that very moment.) Some are retired men and women who have served as clergy in churches and now simply want to offer their experience and services. And yet others have officiant training, experience (and no formal seminary schooling.) Nebraska and Iowa have very similar state laws that require the person conducting there ceremony to be a judge, retired judge, magistrate, or ordained minister.
Inclusive Life offers wedding ceremonies for both those seeking a faith based or nondenominational ceremony. Our Chaplains are ready to help you create an authentic ceremony in a sanctuary, park, garden or any venue of your choosing. Our Chaplains also serve as Officiants to provide secular or nonreligious ceremonies. We serve all without exception.
Questions to ask your officiant or minister:
1. How many ceremonies have your peformed?
2. Ask to see their reviews or feedback from those whom they have married?
3. Ask to see their ordination certificate or ministers license to insure they are in good standing and authorized to perform ceremonies.
4. What happens if they become ill?
5. If you are meeting with them, will they be the ones conducting your ceremony?
6. Do they charge to meet or be available when you have questions?
7. Are you able to create a customized or personalized ceremony, or do they use their own script?
8. Will they coordinate rehearsal and staging?
9. Do the require or offer premarital coaching?
10. What is their training and experience in dealing with large groups of people?
Your wedding day will be one of the most remarkable days in your life. Take the time to find the right fit, the best connection and an officiant or minister that is willing to go the extra mile for you both to create the wedding of your dreams, and one that your guests will be talking about for a long time to come.
Inclusive Life (402) 575-7006 www.inclusivelife.org firstname.lastname@example.org
105 S. 49th Street Omaha, NE and 500 Willow Ave Council Bluffs, IA 51503