Why, when and how I officiate

Why I officiate ceremonies of unions.

My main inspiration for becoming an ordained minister via the Universal Life Church in the 1980s (before they even had a website) was to officiate weddings. I had witnessed a lovely almost improvisational wedding at a Rainbow Gathering in 1980s that was officiated by a PULC minister (and friend) who told me that it was easy to acquire a mail-in ordination from the Church, whose philosophy is basically that anybody who feels called to minister is automatically ordained by God to do so.

My first marriage in 1993 was officiated by a Unitarian minister who graciously tailored my ceremony as per my requests for $100. In that moment, I decided that this was a calling that suited my theatrical and hosting skills perfectly: To help celebrate the coming together of people from alternative communities with understanding and energy befitting their special moment.

Fortunately, my(former) spouse and myself embraced a philosophy of “Merry meet, merry part and merry meet again,” and remain good friends to this day.

When and where

The first legal wedding I officiated was between a high school friend and her partner at a nude beach. Both partners were opera singers who sang their vows.

I have married people in parks, in nightclubs at campgrounds and in their homes since that time and will continue to bring people together to the best of my ability through personal (non-binding) and legal unions.

I have officiated a diverse assortment of  rituals:  a three way partnership ceremony between leathermen, a collaring, a combination wedding and collaring .

How I do them

If you are considering a ceremony of any type, I will happily consider helping orchestrate it for you. This means that I can essentially read from/memorize a script that you have written, or I can write an outline for you to follow.

In either event, you can make this process easier and more personally tailored to your needs, by answering  the following  questions:

Who are you/ your partner(s):

How and when did you meet?:

What is the dynamic/important aspects of your relationship/ commitment

What actions/objects/ circumstances symbolize the strength of your relationship to each other?

What religious/ spiritual traditions would you like to incorporate into your ceremony?

What are your specific commitments (vows) to each other? Would  you like to recite these independently as part of your ceremony or would you like to recite them with guidance from your officiant?

Who are the people/friends/family close to you who you would like to participate in your ceremony? What roles would you like them to play.

Do you intend to write your own ceremony, or would you like to have your ceremony written for you, based on the answers to these questions.

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