What Brings Me To I DO Wedding Officiant Training?

I DO Wedding Officiant Officiant


What Brings Me to “I DO–Wedding Officiant Training”?

When I began leading wedding ceremonies 28 years ago, I had the benefit of training during ministerial school. Still I made mistakes as all humans do! I can’t imagine what it’s like to start out and be given a few basic elements of a ceremony without any guidance or help. Trial and error is sometimes the only way we can learn, but why be embarrassed or fail when you could succeed?

I think you’re brave to be willing to go it alone!

But you don’t have to!

Everyone deserves to have a great experience at a wedding ceremony. The couple, their wedding party, their guests. And YOU.

I’ve served over 500 couples. I know that being part of two people’s initiation into married life is a truly rewarding pleasure AND an honor. You can experience this kind of satisfaction too. Being around so much positive excitement is almost addictive!

I’ve done big weddings, small weddings, weddings on the beach, in a river, on hills and at the foot of waterfalls. I’ve met some of the most wonderful people, their families and friends. Officiating is the kind of profession where I’ve been able to use my creative talents, and work with people to bring out the best qualities of their relationship. Officiating is very rewarding work, and as I learned to value the talent I have for officiating, it’s been financially rewarding as well.

How the Internet Has Changed Almost Everything

The internet is the most revolutionary communication and commerce tool we’ve seen in our lifetime. It provides us with so many options that our head can spin. I click “Trash” more than I want to but I had to make it okay that there’s just some things I’m going to miss out on. Causes I can’t contribute to. Princes in Norway I won’t get my surprise inheritance from.

No Longer Exclusive

One of the areas that’s been changed by the internet is the easy access to the once exclusive and respected role of the ordained minister. For an average of $35, anyone can apply for ordination by filling out some forms, and pay the required fee. Then poof. Sane or insane, sincere or superficial, any person can be legally authorized to perform wedding and funeral services.

After years of complaining how internet-ordained ministers challenged my landscape of possibilities, I realized these folks were not going to go away. My being professionally trained and officially ordained by a real, live, look-in-my-eyes congregation didn’t seem to amount to much. In fact, some people trusted me less because let’s face it, the word “minister’ conjures up a host of expectations, accurate or not. It’s also true that religion has sometimes caused more problems than it’s solved. Some folks understandably don’t want to be bothered with it.

Warm-hearted OfficiantIs there A New Definition for Ordination?

I was left with some important questions. Is there a new meaning to ordination other than being someone who can legally sign the license? Ordination traditionally meant being called by a higher power into serving a greater purpose. Now it felt like being an officiant was on par with any other product a vendor provided. Yep, just bring those vows in boys and set ‘em right there on that altar, and we’ll get to them later…

Another question was a very practical one. How could I make a decent living if so many opportunities were getting shipped overseas, oh wait, I mean, being done by untrained, unvetted people?

No More Regulations Please

I didn’t want the government to institute a new regulation that took away the online service’s right to ordain someone. (I was tempted, don’t get me wrong.) Instead I looked around for other options and asked myself, “What ELSE can I do that’s helpful, meaningful and financially rewarding?”

The solution wasn’t to become a dog trainer, learn to code, or go back to college for a teaching degree. My answer came in one short statement that popped into my head after meditation: Develop what you know.

A quick question for that still, small voice – What does THAT mean? Could I have more information please?

We did not gossip

The details came along in a surprising way. I often talk with other wedding professionals – venue coordinators, photographers, wedding planners, a DJ here and there. “How’s your wedding season going?” we’d ask each other. “Are you noticing any new trends?”

I’ve also talked with guests about other ceremonies they’ve attended. “Was the officiant a professional?” If not, I’d ask, “How did they do?”

Both people and professionals told me how nice it was if the officiants already had a relationship with their couple. He or she brought a level of connection to the ceremony.

A Majority Said the Same Thing

But I CONSISTENTLY heard the complaint that on the whole (not all), the officiant had either a weak wedding address or they had none at all. And she or he knew diddly squat about running a ceremony. Their delivery was awkward, and they generally had very little original, inspirational content. Sometimes they were inappropriate.

So this is why I started I DO Wedding Officiant Training. To help everyone involved in the ceremony have the best chance possible of being proud and pleased by the ceremony’s by the time it’s over.

This, the first program put into form as I DO Brilliance, has plenty of great technical and content materials for your use. In addition to having the option of one-on-one coaching, materials, checklists, blueprints, cheat sheets, and templates each includes directions that can help any officiant take their basic understanding up a notch as many notches as they’re interested in.

If you have questions, and are a member please post them in the private Facebook page, I Do Wedding Officiant Training Group.