Post # 1
Hi lovely bees! We’re getting married in August in Canada, and have asked my father-in-law to perform the ceremony. He is not ordained, so we will have to do the legal paperwork some other way. Usually, I’ve heard you can have an officiant watch the wedding and sign the papers for you. However, there’s one catch – My father-in-law is very Christian, and has stated that he is happy to perform the ceremony as long as we are legally married first due to religious beliefs. We are okay with this – I think!
Originally we didn’t bat an eye, thinking we could do a city hall thing the week of, but as the date grows closer, I’d really prefer to get married on my wedding day. I was thinking we had a few options:
1) Get married right before (however, a first look for me isn’t really what I’d like .. walking down the isle is a pretty big deal to me)
2) Get married with an officiant after the service (asking him to compromise on his religious beliefs, doesn’t seem fair of us to ask)
3) Wondering if anyone had any advice?? I can’t seem to think of a 3rd compromise to make it work for ALL of us
What are your thoughts?
Post # 2
I dont understand why he wants to marry someone that is already married? That makes literally no sense.
I’d say he can either get ordained, or perform the ceremony with the officiant in the background.
YOU CANT MARRY SOMEONE WHO IS ALREADY MARRIED I DONT GET THIS
Post # 3
Is there a reason he has to perform the ceremony? Can you have another officiant do it and have him read something special (a bible verse, a poem, etc.) during the ceremony?
Post # 4
I know, absolutely. Unfortunately it’s due to religious beliefs, as I am not Christian and he doesn’t feel comfortable actually marrying us, but instead performing a celebration instead.
Post # 5
That may be an option, but my fiance is uncomfortable “unasking” him. I’m hoping if we have the “Hey, we really want to ACTUALLY GET MARRIED ON OUR WEDDING DAY” conversation, it might go that way. But in terms of US saying “hey, nevermind”, we aren’t quite there yet.
Post # 6
Okay, so you could probably check if he would prefer to do a prayer at dinner, or do a reading at the ceremony.
If its important to you to actually get married on your wedding day and he is refusing to work with you, I think that might be the next best option. If he specifically said he “doesnt feel comfortable marrying you”, then he might not actually want to do the ceremony?
Post # 7
We looked into getting a friend ordained since officiants where we are getting married are expensive… Its not so easy in Canada, you need a compelling reason, paperwork and more time than you have… What we ended up doing was getting a United minister to marry us… Only one of you needs to be baptised (according to our minister)… Since you would be getting married by a priest Father-In-Law probably wouldn’t be too upset by being replaced.
Post # 8
- Wedding: October 2019 - Chateau Lake Louise
So, here’s the thing. No one is married at the end of the marriage ceremony. In fact, you aren’t LEGALLY married until the licence is filed. As such, him wanting you to be married PRIOR to the celebration would be completely out of keeping with how marriages are usually performed.
What makes the most sense, if he still doesn’t want to get ordained himself, is to have someone else join you after the ceremony in a private location to do the legally required process and to be the one to actually sign the documents at the end of the wedding.
I found a website that spells out Canadian law: http://www.law-faqs.org/alberta-faqs/family-law/marriage/
There are only two requirements in the Act for words that must be used in the ceremony when it is performed by a marriage commissioner. Each of you must say: “I do solemnly declare that I do not know of any lawful impediment why I (state name) may not be joined in matrimony to (state name)”, and each of you must say to the other: “I call upon those persons present to witness that I do take you, to be my lawful wedded wife (husband).”
So, I’d explain this to Father-In-Law and ask him to perform the ceremony, knowing the actual paperwork will be seen to directly after. If he’s still uncomforatble, you’ll have to either compromise on your wedding date, or your first look.
Post # 9
Thank you, this is really helpful! Perhaps explaining the ACTUAL logistics to him and realizing that it’s just paperwork might help. Copied and pasted this to my fiance 🙂
Post # 10
Where I live, the church doesn’t allow couples to do the church wedding until the legal wedding has been done. It’s normally between a day and a week before, though for international paperwork reasons we’ll be doing ours a couple of months before. Just so you know it’s not that weird for the legal papers to be signed before a religious wedding can be done.
For your situation, I’m not sure what to suggest. I wouldn’t want to do the legal wedding the same morning and miss out on the first look in the aisle. I wouldn’t want to ask him to marry you anyway, as as I’ve said it’s common for church weddings to have to come after legal papers have been signed. I’d probably just suck it up and do the legal wedding the day before.
Post # 11
Why don’t you do the paperwork early in the morning on the day of before you put on your wedding dress and do your hair/make up?
Post # 12
- Wedding: October 2019 - UK
In many European counties you cant get a religions ceremony before the legal paperwork is done. It is very normal to have the civil ceremony early in the morning with a hand full of people and then change and have the religious ceremony later in the day. In some south American countries its the same, the civil ceremony is in the morning and the church ceremony in the evening.