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How Can I Perform A Wedding Ceremony

How Do We Find A Credible Organization

How to Perform a Sand Ceremony

There are a few large organizations that will ordain online. Some of the most common online ministries are American Fellowship Church, Universal Life Church, Universal Ministries and Rose Ministries. Once you find one that suits you, check with your Secretary of State’s office for legitimacy. The American Fellowship Church, for example, is legally registered with the California Secretary of State’s office as a nonprofit religious organization in good standing.

Can My Friend Officiate My Wedding In Texas

Texas law recognizes specific categories of people that are authorized to conduct a wedding ceremony. Assuming the family friend is not currently a judge or religious leader, his best bet will be to become an officer of a religious organization who is authorized by the organization to conduct a marriage ceremony.

Can You Officiate Your Own Wedding In Texas

No.A wedding officiant cannot marry themselves. When you are serving in the capacity of a wedding officiant and signing a marriage license you are swearing that the couple you are marrying is completing the marriage license in accordance with the law. Essentially, you are witnessing their act of marriage.

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How To Officiate A Wedding

Now that your friend is actually ordained to officiate your wedding, what do they actually have to do? You’ll want to take a look at your local laws again to brush up on the requirements. In most cases, your officiant simply needs to include the declaration of intent, or the “Do you take…” and “I do” vows portion of the ceremony.

Handfasting Wedding Ceremony Wording

5 Unique Wedding Ceremony Ideas

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Handfastings celebrates the coming together of two people in a formal and equal partnership. Handfastings can have many variations, but it is based on an ancient Celtic ritual in which the coupleâs hands are tied together to symbolize the binding of their two lives. It is often a part of Wiccan or Pagan ceremonies but it is also becoming popular in more mainstream ceremonies.

Know now before you go further, that since your lives have crossed in this life you have formed ties between each other.As you seek to enter this state of matrimony you should strive to make real, the ideals that give meaning to both this ceremony and the institution of marriage.

With full awareness, know that within this circle you are not only declaring your intent to be handfasted before your friends and family, but you speak that intent also to your creative higher powers.The promises made today and the ties that are bound here greatly strengthen your union they will cross the years and lives of each soulâs growth.Do you still seek to enter this ceremony?

Bride and Groom say, âYes, We Seek to Enter.â


and , these two bottles of sand represent your individual life and all that you are. Your friends, families, and children if any before today. Today we will blend this sand and you will not exist anymore.You will become one in love and married. And as the sand cannot be quite separated, so also you both cannot be well separated.

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Completing The Marriage Process

Following the ceremony, youll need to oversee a few final steps to make the marriage official. First, double check the marriage license for any errors and then sign it along with the couple and their witnesses. During this time, many officiants choose to gift the newlyweds a custom marriage certificate to remember the special day. Though not required, its a nice touch that couples always appreciate.

The last thing will be to return the marriage license to the office where it was issued . With all the paperwork completed and properly returned, the marriage will be official!

Step : Return The Marriage License

After the wedding ceremony, both copies of the marriage license must be signed by the officiant and both witnesses. One thing to note, especially for destination weddings, is to know the county you are marrying in as the officiant will need to fill that out on the marriage license.

Both copies of the marriage license must be returned to the Register of Deeds office from which it was obtained within ten days of the ceremony. You may return the marriage license in person or via mail by using the return envelope they provided – dont forget the stamp!

Typically, we will mail the marriage license for our clients the next day to ensure it arrives in time.

Photo Credit: Simply Violet Photography

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Discuss What You Should Wear

All eyes will be on the coupleand also on the officiant who will be standing with them. “Plan on discussing what youll wear so there are no surprises or complaints. Even if the couple says, ‘dress any way you want,’ you need to think about your attire in the context of the role you are playing as the wedding ceremony officiantnot just a wedding guest,” Anakotta says. While you don’t want to clash with the wedding party, you also don’t want to appear overdressed , compared to the rest of the people in the ceremony photos. For all these reasons, make sure to have a frank discussion with the couple about the dress code.

What Is A Wedding Officiant

How to Perform a Wedding Ceremony (In 4 Simple Steps!)

A wedding officiant is the leader of the wedding ceremony. They work with the couple to prepare materials for the ceremony and perform the marriage on the day-of.

According to expert Natasha Anakotta, an officiant can expect to spend “anywhere from six months to a full year before the ceremony” preparing and officiating each wedding. “This allows enough time for ordering credentials and official documents, completing minister registration, working with the couple on the ceremony creation, practicing, and working out the logistics and details,” Anakotta says.

Meet the Expert

Natasha Anakotta is the Outreach & Operations Manager at American Marriage Ministries .

The upsides of getting a loved one or family acquaintance to officiate your wedding are plentiful: It’s more intimate and personal than having a stranger officiate, it’s less expensive than hiring somebody, and it’s a very special way to include them in your big day. Read on for a complete guide to officiating, from getting ordained to writing the actual ceremony.


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Can Your Friend Or Family Member Officiate Your Wedding

Ordination requirements differ from state to state and even from county to county and city to city. Step one is to do your research and make sure your friend or family member is legally able to officiate your wedding. In some states, for example, a couple doesn’t even need an officiant, while in others, only pastors can perform a wedding.

You’ll want to do your research first to make sure you’re following local state or district rules. For example, in New York City, your officiant will have to register with the court at the city clerk’s office.

Perform The Wedding Ceremony

Our ministers perform all different types of weddings from formal and traditional ceremonies to laid-back weddings with fun themes, we’ve seen it all. Here at the ULC we always encourage creativity, and applaud unique ceremony ideas. However, as minister, you should be familiar with the basic requirements that all ceremonies must meet.

In order for a marriage to be legally binding, the wedding ceremony itself must include two key elements. The first is the Declaration of Intent this is most commonly recognized as the “Do you take… I do” exchange. The second is the Pronouncement, where you will pronounce the couple officially married. While most weddings will involve additional elements, these segments constitute the bare minimum for a legal ceremony. Make sure you cover them!

Planning the wedding ceremony itself is generally left up to the couple, though you may be asked to provide input or advice. If you are officiating a wedding ceremony for close friends or family, your personal knowledge of the couple will likely mean more involvement in the planning stages. Either way, it is important to communicate with the couple to figure out what type of ceremony they want and which elements they’d like included.

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Lay Out The Order Of Ceremony

Its helpful to have a Wedding Planning Sheet for yourself and a copy to hand out to the couple, so they get a clear understanding of their options.

You can get my Wedding Planning Sheet here if you want.

Simply walk them through each element and have them select what they want or dont want. See an example with more details in the next section.

Step : Find Your Witnesses

Can the Mother of the Bride (or Groom) Perform a Ceremony ...

In order to have a legal North Carolina wedding ceremony, you must have an ordained officiant and two legal witnesses present. Your two witnesses must be 18 years of age or older and will need to sign the marriage license as well.

If you are eloping and there are no friends or family members present, you can ask your wedding planner and photographer to be your witnesses!

Photo Credit: Bren Photography

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Who Can Officiate A New Hampshire Wedding

Here is the list of persons who can officiate a wedding in New Hampshire.

  • A Justice of the Peace commissioned in New Hampshire
  • Ministers in New Hampshire .
  • Ministers living outside New Hampshire can still officiate a marriage in New Hampshire with a license and fee.
  • An individual living outside New Hampshire can also officiate a marriage in New Hampshire if they are authorized to perform marriages in their state of residence with a license and fee.
  • A temporary special marriage license can also be obtained by any individual for a fee.

More details here on who can officiate marriages in New Hampshire.

We hope this helps answer any questions on obtaining a NH marriage license and who can officiate a marriage in New Hampshire. If youre also looking for a New Hampshire wedding venue head here or here!

Pastor Wedding Ceremony Script

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As a pastor performing a wedding ceremony you will include all the traditional and religious elements of your church. The biblical readings and music will reflect the religious nature of the ceremony as well as the commitment by the couple surrounding their marriage. A pastor or church leader will often take the opportunity to meet with the couple ahead of time so that the words in the ceremony are ones they choose together.


I welcome you all and Iâm thankful that you are here to witness and celebrate the love of Paul and Melisa.


We prayâ¦Father in heaven, we give you thanks for binding these two persons in love. We pray that you uphold their love. Make their love practical and give them hearts of patience and forgiveness. Today, we hand this marriage over to you.

Who gives this bride to be Wedâ¦Will you have this woman as your legal wife? To love and cherish, protect and keep? In good and bad, until death takes you?


With the power vested in me by the state of Georgia, I pronounce you man and wife.

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Join The Officiant Association

If youre serious about building a sustainable career as a professional wedding officiant, then joining the International Association of Professional Wedding Officiants may be the single smartest decision you can make. The IAPWO offers educational content, networking opportunities, and member discounts for many products and services your business needs, as well as producing an annual wedding officiant conference. We are proud to be an official partner of the IAPWO, and offers discounted advertising packages and upgraded directory placement to IAPWO members. For more information about IAPWO benefits or to become a member, visit IAPWO.ORG.

Dont Forget To Sign The Marriage License

Write and Officiate the Perfect Wedding Ceremony (Like a Pro)

Immediately after the ceremony, get the bride and groom and two witnesses away from the crowd to sign the marriage license.

The wedding photographer will probably also want to be present to take pictures. Make sure you wait for them.

After signing the license, remind them to make sure they give it to someone they trust or put it somewhere safe immediately before doing anything else.

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Vows And Rings Exchange

The couple exchange vows, rings and promise to remain committed to each other. Prior to the wedding, the couple should rehearse their vows with the officiant, separately. This allows them to be comfortable with speaking them outloud, without hearing their partners lines for the first time.

  • The couple exchange vows that they have prepared.
  • The officiant facilitates the exchange of vows with a simple announcement such as, As you place this ring on your partners finger
  • Rings are presented and exchanged.

The marriage is declared official!

  • The officiant declares that the couple is married, I now pronounce you
  • The officiant introduces the newlyweds, It is my honor to introduce
  • The officiant tells the newlyweds to kiss!

When Its Legal To Have A Friend Officiate Your Wedding And When Its Not

This article courtesy of Avvo NakedLaw blog

By the power vested in me, I now pronounce you

Have you ever wondered what that means, what the power is, and who exactly has done the vesting?

These arent just pretty words, but legal ones. Only certain people are legally recognized to perform a wedding ceremony and make a marriage legal. And to make it trickier, requirements change from state to state and even from county to county. Read on to learn the basics about how to make sure your I do is legal.

Judges, ministers and more

For nonreligious ceremonies, justices of the peace, court clerks and active and retired judges may officiate the marriage. Certain states, like South Carolina and Maine, also accept notaries public as officiants.

For religious ceremonies, members of the clergy like priests, ministers or rabbis, et cetera, may officiate a marriage. They may need to register with the county in which the wedding will take place, especially if its out of state. Shamans, medicine men and other leaders may be able to perform religious marriages in Native American communities.

Contrary to popular belief, boat captains are not able to perform a legal wedding ceremony just by virtue of being a captain. They must be given the authority in some other way.

Ordained by the Internet

If you want a friend or relative to officiate your wedding but they are not already a member of the clergy or an accepted public official, never fear. There are options.

Double-checking your I do

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