JM

What to expect from
your celebrant

29/10/17

When I’m asked what I do, naturally I say ‘I’m a wedding celebrant’ and no lie, 80% of the time people ponder for a little while and then ask: “So what do you actually do?”

I can say very quickly what a celebrant doesn’t do: turn up to a wedding and read a generic ceremony script for 20 minutes, pronounce you husband & wife and that’s it.

A celebrant spends a fair amount of preparation time in lead up to your wedding as well as before and during the ceremony. So I thought it would be handy to jot down what your celebrant should do and how to make the most out of your celebrant. All of the below will equal you having an awesome wedding ceremony:

  • Provide advice and help to complete your Notice of Intended Marriage form (NOIM)
  • Sight your original ID docs to make sure you’re you
  • Witness the legal documents
  • Listen and take onboard your wedding ideas
  • Create a wedding ceremony structure with meaningful elements
  • Get to know you in a short amount of time
  • Ask fun questions about you as a couple
  • Have as many meetings or phone chats as we need, accompanied with coffee/wine/beer makes it all the more fun
  • Learn about your families and friends involved in your wedding
  • Provide ceremony script samples created just for you
  • Help you write your own personalised vows
  • Suggest ways to involve key people in the ceremony
  • Collaborate with you on getting your ceremony just right
  • Recommend other awesome wedding vendors
  • Help with a back-up plan if you’re having an outdoor wedding
  • Organise a rehearsal so that everyone is relaxed and super ready
  • Arrive early to your ceremony location, meet and greet anyone who is involved (photographer, any musicians, wedding planner, readers etc), set up my PA system, arrange the legal documents securely on the signing table, practice the ceremony and just ensure everything is in place
  • Keep the Groom company up front and if need be, keep him comfortable, calm and collected
  • Cue for the music to begin, faded out and repeat
  • Ensure everyone can hear clearly
  • Deliver your ceremony. For me I like to make it light-hearted, relaxed and engaging for everyone there
  • Be quick to improvise during the ceremony if something pops up, for example: bride &/or groom needs a tissue, funny comments from the guests if they are asked something, or maybe a sudden turn in the weather if outdoors
  • Make sure all legal documents are accurate and ready for your signature and your witnesses’ signatures.
  • Give a you huge congratulations hug & kiss
  • Securely package up all of the legal docs & marriage registration papers and send it off to Registry of BDMs.

And if you’re not quite sure what to find out from your celebrant, here’s some questions that you might consider asking them:

  • Do you have an agreement that I can review before we go ahead?
  • How would you describe your ceremony style?
  • What time will you be arriving on the day?
  • What will do during set up?
  • Would you incorporate some jokes or keep to no jokes?
  • Will our guests get the chance to speak up if they have any objections?
  • How can we involve our most important people?
  • Can we involve our children or pet/s?
  • Can we incorporate a poem, reading or music lyrics?
  • Can you help write our vows?
  • Can you include some of our stories into the script?
  • Please tell us that you don’t speak gushingly??
  • Will you be reading from a note pad, iPad, kindle or no notes?
  • What will you be wearing?
  • Do you drink champagne? YES!!
  • Can we drink during the ceremony? Depends on the venue but I really like that idea 🙂
  • Can our photographer move freely around to get different shots?
  • Can we make it short & sweet?

I could talk weddings for hours and I’ve realised that majority of people are very happy to rattle on with me. It’s always a feel-good conversation starter. I guess it’s because a wedding is all about celebrating love, coming together and having a great party!  What could better than that!

Just get in touch & I would love to talk weddings with you 🙂

Jacqueline

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