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HOW TO SELECT AN OFFICIANT FOR YOUR WEDDING DAY

By: Dayna Reid : May, 8th 2012 - Published in Wedding Day Magazine


It is important to choose an Officiant (also known as “Minister” or the “person who marries you”) who best matches your personalities and intention for your wedding day. The words spoken at your ceremony should reflect what the two of you believe and feel, as well as be as formal or informal as you desire. Here are some tips on what to consider when selecting an Officiant.


What is the Officiant’s experience? 
The government does not issue licenses to ministers, so an Officiant’s experience with weddings is important. Does the Officiant have references you can contact? 

What is the spiritual or religious perspective of the Officiant?
Many ministers subscribe to the doctrines of a particular faith. Can they work with you to create a ceremony that is true to your beliefs?

How accommodating is the Officiant? 
If you want a non-traditional song played during the ceremony, will the Officiant allow it? Are you free to add your own vows or other special, romantic touches? Do you want a little humor in the ceremony? 

Will the Officiant run the rehearsal? 
An experienced Officiant at your wedding rehearsal can be very helpful. If the Officiant is unable or unwilling to attend the rehearsal, will other arrangements be made for someone to lead your wedding party through the steps? 

What will the Officiant wear?
Some Officiants wear suits (a black suit is desirable as it blends in with any color scheme), some wear robes, and others wear a wide variety of garments from jeans and tennis shoes to butterfly wings (yes, someone actually showed up to perform a ceremony wearing butterfly wings)! 

What ceremony choices does the Officiant offer?
Many officiants have only one ceremony they offer. Be sure you get to review their ceremony and ensure that it expresses what you want communicated at your wedding. Ask if they have any spontaneous words they will add. Some Officiants will have a few simple choices (with the option of adding some of your own ideas) so that you can create the ceremony that is the most meaningful to you. Others will design an elaborate, customized wedding just for you.

Is the Officiant focused on serving you?
Many people feel that they have to meet a minister’s (also known as “Officiant”) standards, and in some religious traditions this is entirely valid. But remember, the original meaning of the word “minister” is “servant.” Is the minister serving your needs on your big day? Are you comfortable in their presence, or do you feel like you have to withhold things to prevent his or her disapproval? Find an Officiant who is eager to serve you, and your wedding day will be a beautiful one for everyone.

(Excerpt from the wedding book, “Sacred Ceremony: Create and Officiate Personalized Wedding Ceremonies”)


Each county has a County Clerk.  You will want to visit your local Clerk's office to apply for your marriage license.  Below is some helpful information for the process.


After you select your officiant you will need to obtain your marriage license within 60 days of your wedding.  Below you will find some helpful information.


FEES

Indiana residents:  $18
Residents of other states  $60
Each copy of the Certified Marriage License 
(required for name change at BMV, SSN, etc) is an extra $2.00.  
Most counties will require cash payments.

REQUIRED DOCUMENTS

You will both need to bring a current, valid drivers license or state issued ID card
Birth Certificate
Passport
Should you be divorced you will need to bring your divorce decree also
You will also be asked to provide your social security number (card not necessary)


LICENSE VALIDITY

You will receive the license the same day you apply; it expires 60 days after being issued. The license is valid only for marriages performed within Indiana.  You will need to bring this with you for your officiant to sign once our ceremony is completed.

WHERE TO APPLY

You will both need to be present at your county Clerk's office to apply.  Every county has different hours of operation so you will want to check with them on hours of operation.


AGE REQUIREMENTS
You must be at least 18 years of age or 17 with consenting guardians.

COUNTY CLERK OFFICES

Below is a link for the county clerks in Indiana.  Choose your county and proceed.  There are several counties that offer online applications that you can start and finish in person at the clerks office.

http://www.in.gov/judiciary/2794.htm


We want to make this a very easy process for you.  Just give us a call at    260-435-9260   


 or send us an email anewchapterweddings@gmail.com   


With your wedding date, time and location and we will check for availability for you. A $100 non-refundable retainer is required to secure your date and time.  The retainer is applied to your package.