Is your officiant sitting down at dinner service at your reception?

posted 2 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 2
Member
1377 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2015

1234sophia:  I think it’s courtesy to provide every vendor with a meal. Kind of strange that he’s requested a plus one. 

Our officiant has a seat at our dinner, along with his wife and two kids. He’s a family friend, and his daughter is one of my BMs. 

Post # 3
Member
145 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: April 2013

In Ireland at Catholic weddings, it’s fairly common for the priest to be invited for the meal. (No plus one issues there, obviously)

In your situation, I wouldn’t invite him.

Post # 4
Member
3630 posts
Sugar bee

Nope. They left right after the service. The only vendors provided with meals were those staying the entire length of the reception, like the photographer and band members, who ate on-site, during a 20 minute break.

Unless he is of the same closeness level as the other 40 guests, like long term family friend, uncle, etc. he shouldn’t be attending your 40-person, intimate dinner. Tell him you need to wait and see if there are any cancellations or no-shows, for you to accomodate him.

 

Post # 5
Member
1441 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

We invited ours along with his wife. His wife did not attend, but he did. I think it’s the right thing to do.

Post # 6
Member
2657 posts
Sugar bee

Generally, it’s courtesy to provide a vendor with a meal if they request it.  But, I have never heard of an officiant requesting one (with the exception of officiants who were family members/friends and were already on the guest list).  Our ceremony was super short too and the officiant told us that she’d be leaving before dinner was served.  However, she was also local so she wasn’t spending extra time traveling to do our ceremony.  If your officiant is traveling outside of his normal radius, he may be requesting the meal due to time spent traveling.  Even so, he should have made that known ahead of time in the contract.

If you absolutely can’t find the space for him, maybe ask if you could reimburse him for meal expenses elsewhere.

Post # 7
Member
900 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2015

Yes, my officiant and his wife will be seated at the tables with the rest of our guests, but that’s mainly because the two of them are close friends of my family (and the wedding is taking place 6 hours from where they live).  

I do think it’s strange that your officiant requested a +1.  If he wants to stick around for the reception, he should be comfortable doing so solo.  Otherwise it seems like he wants a meal but doesn’t want to sit with people he doesn’t know, so he’s forcing somebody you definitely don’t know on your intimate wedding!

Post # 8
Member
7654 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: July 2012

1234sophia:  Yes. We provided a meal to our officiant.

Post # 9
Member
2565 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

We had a secular officiant.  She left right after the ceremony.

Post # 10
Member
312 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: November 2015

Depends, is your wedding and reception at the same venue? If so, it would be right to include him and his guest there. I could see the plus one, who wants to be alone at a wedding where you don’t know anyone?

If your reception  isn’t at the same venue, its up to you. If you cannot do it in the budget, nor want him them, especially if he cannot remember your name, i dont think you need to have him there. 

Post # 11
Member
3812 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

1234sophia:  I was under the impression that officiants (and spouses) are always invited to the reception, but apparently that’s not true across the board. 

I invited our officiant and his wife, but we didn’t pay him (he was a judge, not allowed to accept payment), and he was an acquaintence of both families.

If you can work it, I would extend the invite. Are you sure he’ll even accept?

Post # 13
Member
135 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: June 2015

The only vendors who are getting meals are the two djs and three photographer. 

Post # 14
Member
1399 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: November 2013

We invited the minister who was marrying us to the reception.  We got to know him over the months leading to the wedding and really liked him, but we invited him from the get-go, from the first day we met with him.  I think it’s the right thing to do.  A request for a plus one, however, is a little strange.  I think I would just order him a vendor meal, if I was in your shoes.  Especially since it doesn’t seem like you’re that close with him.

Post # 15
Member
273 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 2025

1234sophia:  I’m inviting my officiant and his wife. I know them personally, and both of them are on my GL anyway. But in your case, I would kindly let him know that the reception is incredibly small – I’m sure he’ll understand. 

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