Marriage Celebrant, Paul Meagher from – All Ceremonies – Guest Post –

Getting Married …… you will need a Celebrant or Minister?

But how should you go about selecting the person most likely to give you the perfect ceremony?

This celebrant/minister is the most conspicuous service-provider for your very special life-event, and you’ll want that event to be presented in a way that is memorable for all the ‘right reasons’.

Therefore your choice of celebrant is one of the most significant decisions that you will make with regard to your wedding, for it is the celebrant who starts you out on your journey through life as a married couple.

It is therefore important to choose your celebrant carefully, and, within reason, you should not make your decision based upon cost alone.

“The bitterness of poor quality lingers long after the sweetness of cheaper prices is forgotten”

It can be daunting. There are so many options out there male, female, young, old, spiritual, religious, cheap, expensive and not to mention shapes & sizes.

Thankfully, using a checklist you can speed the process up considerably. But from my over 23 years’ experience, I believe there is only one essential criteria in choosing your celebrant/minister and it’s pretty simple – you must ‘click’ with your Celebrant as a person. If you don’t get on with them or you don’t think your family and friends will – don’t book them!

Remember it’s your wedding – so play by your rules.

Things to think about and ask are:

Personality: Does the celebrant inspire confidence that your ceremony will be professionally prepared and presented in accordance with your wishes, Does the celebrant listen to you and respond to your needs, Can you write your own vows? Will your celebrant support you in this? Will you know what your celebrant intends to say at your ceremony? Will your celebrant encourage you to have an input into your ceremony?
Do you feel that you will be welcome to contact your celebrant about any issues regarding your ceremony and not be considered a nuisance or a bother?

Knowledge & Experience: Is the product and service the celebrant is offering in tune with what you want? Has the celebrant a wide range of experience upon which to call? Does your celebrant have lots of great ideas and does he/she give you the impression that your marriage is as important to him/her as it is to yourselves? Can the celebrant make suggestions as to elements to be included in your ceremony? If you change your mind about the content (or style) of your ceremony is your celebrant sufficiently innovative and flexible to adapt as well? Is the celebrant an experienced public speaker with clear a speaking voice? Will all your guests be able to hear the ceremony? Will the celebrant provide a PA system if necessary? Does your celebrant have testimonials from previous clients that you could have a look at and photos of recent weddings that he/she has conducted? Is the celebrant a ‘hobbyist’ celebrant or a full time, professional celebrant? Does this matter to you?

Professionalism: A Civil Marriage Celebrant has certain obligations under the Marriage Act 1961 – are these explained to you at your first meeting. In what ways will your ceremony be personalised? Will the celebrant attend an on-site rehearsal in the week/days leading up to your wedding? What will the celebrant wear on the day? What happens if there is an inordinate delay in agreed start time for the ceremony? Is the fee that the celebrant has quoted, the total charge or are there (hidden) extra charges that might be levied later – such as if you decide to include an extra ritual? Does the celebrant have a copyright license? Does the celebrant hold Public Liability and Professional Indemnity Insurance? Is the celebrant a member of at least one professional celebrants’ association? Does the celebrant offer an obligation-free initial meeting to allow you to ascertain if he/she is the right person for you?

As for me I’m a Celebrant who considers himself to be easy going, relaxed, loves a laugh and open to new ideas and be truly committed to
giving each couple a personalised wedding in the style they want.

It’s not me marrying you; it’s about you marrying each other in front of your family and friends as witnesses.

I want to tell YOUR unique story. It doesn’t have to be grand, it just needs to be yours.