3 Things to Consider When Choosing a Marriage Celebrant
By Rachel Rennie
Congratulations! You’re engaged! You are in the midst of planning
your beautiful wedding when it dawns on you… who is actually going to
run the ceremony? You want someone who can embrace the unique aspects of
your wedding day and help you to create a memorable ceremony.
Ultimately, it should feel like a celebration of your partnership and
1. Is your wedding celebrant the right fit for you and your partner?
The role of the wedding planner is changing. Gone are
the days of cookie-cutter weddings, a specific type of dress, and a
list of people you must invite. Your wedding day is about you and
whoever holds your ceremony will recognise that and celebrate your
unique style! Whether it be a civil union, a marriage, or a renewal of
vows in one of the stunning wedding venues in Wellington – they’ll be
able to take it all in their stride. You should feel comfortable asking
any questions and feel like they are genuinely interested in your day
(however it may look).
Try asking around friends and families, or think of
weddings you’ve attended that you enjoyed. A personal endorsement or
experience is always the best way to find someone; however you can also
ask your wedding venue, or wedding planner for recommendations.
2. Are they available?
You’ve chosen someone you like and trust – now, are
they available? This may sound like a silly question to ask; but the
majority of weddings are held on Fridays or Saturdays. Wedding venues in
Wellington are booked out months and sometimes years in advance, so it
makes sense that a professional and sought-after marriage celebrant
books out in advance as well.
As well as being available on your date of choice,
you and your partner should always be able to meet with them beforehand.
Meet at the wedding venue if possible, and run through a rehearsal so
everyone knows how the ceremony will flow.
An initial consultation is also a great idea; this allows you to talk through any ideas, dates, or concerns you may have.
3. Are they experienced?
The boring but necessary part of your union is
ensuring all the legal obligations are met to make your marriage day
legitimate. You’ll need to apply for a marriage license from the
Department of Internal Affairs. Your marriage celebrant will send the
paperwork off once your marriage is signed on the dotted line!
Afterwards, you can apply for a copy of the marriage certificate if you
Someone with good experience will use your initial
meetings to run through all of the legal jargon as well, making sure you
are aware of what you need to do.
Experience isn’t just about the legalities though. We
are lucky to live in a time where all relationships, regardless of
cultural, sexual preference or religion, are accepted and celebrated.
Wellington itself is known in New Zealand as a city that thrives on
embracing a rich tapestry of cultural and lifestyle backgrounds. Whoever
takes your wedding ceremony should not only be open to signing the
legal documents and running a ceremony you like, but also be genuine
about celebrating the commitment of your partnership.
When planning your wedding, take some time to find a
celebrant who not only truly believes in marriage, but one who believes
in your marriage. Marriage is after all a celebration of a commitment, a
partnership and a life together; wherever that may take you.