Post # 32
I’m so sorry to hear you are going through this. My Fiance is not religious and I was raised both religious and non (long story LOL) …anyway, it was really important to both of us NOT to have a religious ceremony.
My advice is 1. Look for another officiant who definitely has no problem with a non-religious ceremony. We found ours on theknot.com list of officiants. I think your closest area is Detroit Metro, right? Here is the link:
Did you contact all 9 of those people to see if one is available for your date??
Or, even better, I just found this: do a search on weddingwire.com for officiants in the Detroit Metro area : this search returned 50 possibilities!!! —
Start contacting them, set up meetings,etc. Once you find a new one…politely “fire” the other one. Just calmly and politely say you are very sorry about the misunderstanding but it’s really a better choice for you and your Fiance to have a non-denominational service.
I hope it works out, let us know what happens. Best of Luck!
Post # 33
I agree with Future Mrs. Martin- do not apologize for not being religious!
My fiance and I are running into the same problem. Neither of us are religious (certain members of our families are though) and have run into a few problems when talking about the ceremony. We have avoided this somewhat by having the ceremony outside (avoids some of the, “What do you mean you aren’t getting married inside a church?” comments )but are still kinda stuck on the officiant issue.
I agree that if he isn’t comfortable omitting god from the ceremony then he shouldn’t do it but he really should not have agreed to in the first place.
I second love2lol’s comment. Try more people! Also, a lot of officiants will travel (some for free up to a certain amount of miles then a small fee for over that amount) I would search for any officiant within a 2 hour drive. Good luck!
Post # 34
- Wedding: March 2011 - The Viceroy
@ lilyfaith I thought a friend could marry you in IL as long as they were ordained? Do you know if the laws changed? Here’s a thread that discusses it http://boards.weddingbee.com/topic/online-ordination
I don’t know what the laws are in MI, but there are a lot of good ideas here, good luck!
Post # 35
@Genesee – when I looked up the law a few months ago, it said that the ordained individual had to have a congregation that met a certain number of times per year/month, whatever – not sure if that’s changed? I looked into it because we do want a completely secular ceremony, and I had hoped that’d be an option.
Perhaps there is a loophole with some of the online sites? Such as they have actual churches, but ordain people for money?
Post # 36
- Wedding: March 2011 - The Viceroy
@lilyfaith My Fiance was ordained my Universal Life Church and it looks like they’re legal to perform marriages in IL http://www.themonastery.org/tools/wedding_laws/index.php?wide=usa&narrow=illinois.
Post # 37
Okay. had to post this update: We found a new officiant! Yay! So I “polietly fired” the other guy but just a sample of these e-mails….
before we said we had someone else….
“I’m wondering if your comment about keeping the day “non-religious” applies to the ceremony as well. As an ordained Christian minister, the terms of my credentials and my personal faith prevent me from ‘secularizing’ the ceremony“
“I need to make this one point clear: isn’t that I am uncomfortable performing a secular wedding. The term, ‘secular wedding’ has no definition that I can account for. Marriage is God’s idea. The account of Adam and Eve, and the account of Jesus at the wedding feast in Cana is evidence of that. God should be the very first guest on the invitation list.”
What?! He was the one that used the term secular! And huh?
Post # 38
- Wedding: July 2010 - The Tower Club
So, if I’m reading this correctly, he’s not uncomfortable performing a secular wedding, he just won’t do it. ??
Well, I’m glad everything worked out!
Post # 39
I am glad you found a new officiant!
Post # 40
Glad you found someone you’re comfortable with.
I’m not sure how his two statements are inconsistent though. You two have different ideas of what a wedding is so good thing you looked elsewhere.
Post # 41
I think the best thing to do is take a DEEP BREATH! And think about the facts.
1. Is it possible that you made a mistake in hiring him? Obviously you many not have know that a Christian minister would be unable to do a secular service, but from my point of vier (nonreligious) I would have suspected such.
2. You have WEDDING BEES helping you! I bet you can find someone to do it quick! I found my secular officiant on Craigslist.
Post # 42
@future_mrs_kirsch: Honestly, you have absolutely no right being mad or upset with this guy at all. Zero. He is a minister and his first obligation is to God, no matter what he thinks is a secular ceremony. It baffles me you even asked and more so baffles me you are even slightly upset at his attitude.
I am glad you found a new minister. MT is really lax about the marriage laws. It even says “The solemnization of the marriage is not invalidated by the fact that the person solemnizing the marriage was not legally qualified to solemnize it, if either party to the marriage believed him to be so qualified.” So,,,,basically as long as the Fiance and I “believe” my cousin is able to marry us then it is A-OK. He still got ordained online, but he didn’t need to. 🙂
Post # 43
It seems like there was just a misunderstanding on both parts with the first officiant. He probably thought you wanted to keep it non-denominational (to accommodate a diversity of beliefs) but still with Christian overtones, because that’s typically what people want when they contact ministers. You however thought you had made it clear that you were looking for a secular ceremony. I don’t think either one of you was intentionally misleading each other, it was just an unfortunate miscommunication.
I’m glad you found someone else who better fits your needs. However I wouldn’t spend any more time being upset about the other guy, it really doesn’t seem like he was doing anything to try to trip you up.
Post # 44
@serasvictoria-I am not upset with him. I’m just confused. First he said he would perform a “non-religious” wedding. Then he said he couldn’t because of his beliefs. Then he said he wasn’t uncomfortable doing it. I just thought it was strange. I would never WANT anyone to perform a ceremony they were uncomfortable with! I was upset initially because i wasn’t sure if I could find someone else.
Also just in general- it’s not like I sought out a Christian minister and wanted him to perform a secular ceremony. My aunt (who he also told he would perform a secular ceremony for us) knows him and he is ordained. This is not his FT job.
Post # 45
i think greenleaf is right – he probably thought “non-religous” meant “non-denominational” and you meant “non-religous” as “secular”
simple misunderstanding it seems like – and it also seems liek his reasoning for not doing a secular marriage is exactly what i described. his defininition of marriage as an officiant is religious, therefore he can not swear and sign paperwork that doesnt involve those things because he would be lying.
and just FYI – just because its not your “full time job” doesnt make you any less of a minister. my father is technically not a full time minister, hes both a cop AND a minister, but that is because he cant support himself on what the churhc pays, so he preaches on sundays, and works patrol full time. doesnt discount his ordination any less, it just means the amount of hours you work the job.
Post # 46
I am glad you found someone willing to perform your ceremony!