- 9 years ago
I need some advice to see how you think you might handle the following situation. Almost a year ago, the church where we had booked our wedding canceled on us. We were left having to find another option, and because other things had been booked, we decided to keep our date and move the ceremony to our reception location. We assumed that we would find someone to perform our ceremony there.
After a couple of failed options, we asked a coworker/friend of mine to perform the ceremony. She offered and said that she had married other people previously so I took her up on it. I never checked on her credentials, because I assumed that she wouldn’t be offering it if wasn’t legal. We began planning the ceremony with her and our wedding is now one month and one day away.
Last week, when my fiance went to the County Clerk’s office to pick up the marriage license, we found out that we would need to provide proof of ordination (i.e. the certificate from online) to "solemnize" our marriage. When I mentioned this to our friend, she said that she actually had not been ordained previously, simply licensed. It turned out that the wedding she had officiated before was in another state with obviously different marriage laws. Since we’re a month away, I asked if she would be willing to get ordained online now, and continue to perform the ceremony. Today, she told me that she would not feel comfortable doing that. Apparently, she’s in the process of getting ordained in another church and doesn’t want to jeopardize that.
So now our wedding is in a month and technically, we don’t have a way to make it legal yet. I’m trying to find options that don’t involve going to the court house on a different day. My sister offered to get ordained online and perform a ceremony for us, but she doesn’t want to do the actual one in front of everyone. She suggested we just get married beforehand and then have the original friend do the ceremony we do for the guests. I’m just torn because I feel like if we get married beforehand, is our ceremony still our "real wedding"? Do we tell our families? Parents and siblings? Friends? Do we keep it a secret? On one hand, I want our parents and siblings to be there, on the other hand, I want as few people as possible to know that this is even taking place, because I want them to believe that the ceremony is geniune and really our wedding.
If you’ve gotten married before your ceremony, what did you tell people? What would you do in this situation? Go with the two ceremonies? Go back to the drawing board and look for another officiant?!