HAVING A MARRIAGE COMMISSIONER AS YOUR OFFICIANT!
Many vendors will form part of your wedding planning. However, the only legal requirements are to have an officiant, two parties (who will say required declarations out loud), one witness for each, and a marriage license.
Many couples will be married in a church. However, if you choose to have a marriage commissioner I want to share my experience. I was appointed as a Manitoba Marriage Commissioner in 1993 and I have officiated at more than 1800 ceremonies – wedding, commitment, and vow renewal.
I think there are two important aspects to choosing a marriage commissioner — it’s your relationship and confidence with her/him and the words that are spoken to you at your ceremony.
Relationship and Confidence:
Here are a few things to keep in mind when choosing your marriage commissionaire as an officiant.
- Someone who responds quickly to your emails/texts/phone calls so you never are left wondering.
- An officiant who listens to your thoughts and ideas for your ceremony
- A person who has an eye for detail and will be an extra set of eyes at your ceremony. (I’ve pinned boutonnières, straightened necklaces, sewed on buttons, repaired rips on clothing, dug an extension cord into the dirt so it wasn’t in wedding pictures)
- Someone who speaks clearly (I have many years of Toastmasters) and can speak loudly (if the microphone quits working)
- A person who is all-inclusive — incorporating unique cultural elements or same-sex couples.
- Lastly, somebody who will fulfill your dream of being married in a certain location or at a certain time of the day. (I have officiated at the airport at five in the morning as well as at midnight at a wedding social)
When your wedding is over, your marriage commissioner will still be there to answer any questions you might have.
I knew early in my marriage commissioner career that each couple likes different wording and ideas, and it’s important for couples to have choices.
- some want a short and sweet ceremony
- others may want to include their love story because not every guest knows it
- maybe you want to include a prayer or scripture reading because their parents or grandparents would feel comforted by hearing those words?
- some couples like to write a very personal vow and some want to say something traditional
- some ceremonies can include a unity ceremony idea, possibly handfasting or blessing of the hands
There are many more ideas that could be included and you should play a big part in choosing what is said to you.
I’d love to be part of your ceremony planning! For more information on weddings in Winnipeg visit this post.
Colleen is often asked why she became a marriage commissioner. Her answer since 1993 has never changed — it’s the excitement she has when she meets new people, it’s being able to use her Toastmaster skills and it’s giving couples many ceremony options.
Colleen grew up in small-town Riverton and she knows the importance of relationships — with everyone. She is the one who will take the extra step to bring her experiences to your ceremony planning. She is always professional, very organized, and will be prompt to answer your questions.
Words written by couples:
“Colleen felt like a family member guiding us”
“Felt like we were seeing an old friend”
“Colleen is genuine and has a positive aura
“Colleen made us feel comfortable and relaxed through our entire experience”
“You will want Colleen to be a part of your beautiful day.”
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