(Closed) Officiant Help

posted 11 years ago in Ceremony
Post # 3
1245 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2009

Is the officiant a judge? None of the judges I contacted (who each charged more than $200) would attend the rehearsal, which is why we ended up going with somebody else. Judges (and others) have day jobs that they can’t get out of. I agree, it’s totally annoying.

That being said, ask if you can sit down and walk her through the various ceremony steps beforehand if there are going to be a lot of different parts. She should definitely be willing to do that. 

Post # 4
2292 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2008

The officiant generally attends the rehearsal.  After all, part of what you need to know is how everybody else cues to the various parts of the ceremony.  And the officiant needs to know where various readings and songs will come in the flow of things. 

We also started out with a judge as the officiant – friend of my mom’s – and actually ended up going with a retired pastor instead.  The reason?  I actually coudn’t get the judge to commit any time!!  We wanted a personalized ceremony, given by somebody who would take the time to get to know something about us.  I realize that being a federal judge is a busy job, but really, I got the feeling that he agreed only as a favor to my mom and that he actually had less than no interest in us or our wedding.

Our fabulous retired pastor and his wife spent all kinds of time with us, designed a beautiful ceremony, made a point of getting to know our families at least a little (in and around the rehearsal and RD) and generally made me feel like they really cared that our service was special.  I think that if you can’t get that kind of attention from your officiant, it doesn’t matter whose friend they might be!

If you’re generally getting wonderful support from her, but she’s just not available for the rehearsal, maybe you can schedule a mini-walkthrough at some time when she is available?

Post # 6
15 posts

All the officiants we talked to charged extra to attend the rehearsal. The one we ended up going with (he’s a nondenominational minister) will not attend, but we’re going to do a run-through of the ceremony a couple weeks beforehand with just him, and so our rehearsal will mainly focus on where people should stand, their order, and timing.

Post # 7
2004 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: November 2008

The priest marrying my Fiance and I is not coming to our rehearsal either, but he has done many weddings (very standard format) so it’s us who need to rehearse, not him. There is a wedding director at the church who will be running the rehearsal. Apparently the officiant not coming to the rehearsal is not out of the ordinary in a situation like this where the officiant is well-versed in how the ceremony will be.

I guess the question to ask yourself is, money aside, do you want the officiant to attend for your benefit or for hers? Does she officiate a lot of weddings? Are you writing your own ceremony (that is so different from others’ that she would have to take time to learn it)? If your ceremony is going to be quite straightforward and your officiant has some experience in weddings, then I would not stress about her not being there. However, it may be helpful to have someone to run the rehearsal who is not you. Talk over your concerns with her and ask what she normally does when couples have special ceremony requests. 

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