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May16

What Should Couples Look For In A Wedding Officiant?

What should couples look for when choosing between wedding officiants? Let’s review the importance of availability and licensing, as well as the significance of the wedding officiant to the couple. Finally, we will end with a few questions you can ask potential wedding officiants before you hire their services.

Availability/Licensing To Work In The Province

Your first consideration should be the availability of your potential wedding officiant. They will need to be there for any pre-wedding planning as well as on the wedding day. They have to be professional and trustworthy. In addition, they have to be licensed in the province where you will marry. Every province handles wedding officiants differently, and the process to become one can range from being as simple as filling out a form to something far more complex. So, if nothing else, ensure that your potential officiant will be trustworthy enough to get properly licensed in your area and is available in the days around your wedding.

Significance to Couple

There is an incredible range to which people choose for their wedding officiant. The individual will typically have a great deal of significance and meaning to the couple and will stand for something important. Some choose someone who is so passionate about being a wedding officiant it is their full-time role. Some choose a respected civic leader. A popular option is someone in the church belonging to the faith of one or both individuals getting married. Another choice is a favourite mentor, teacher, and even relative (though immediate family are rarely in the position of officiating the wedding.) Still other people decide on a shared friend. It is not uncommon for the friend who first connected the couple to be the person who officiates the wedding. In the end, it all comes down to the significance. Understand that how important choosing the officiant is may be more important to one person than the other. If both individuals getting married want specific people to officiate, then a deal will have to be reached.

Creating a Questionnaire

When reviewing a potential wedding officiant, you can get a sense for what they will be like by how they answer the following questions:

  • What is your biggest challenge when officiating a wedding?
  • Have you ever turned down a request to officiate a wedding and why?
  • What do you think the main duty of an officiant is?
  • What is the most moving wedding you have celebrated?
  • Can you give us the ceremony we want?

Making sure your officiant is on message with the direction and style of your wedding is crucial, especially if you are going outside your friend network or family to find someone. Asking them the questions above and talking through what your process will be like will give you a better idea if the officiant is right for you.


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