You are newly engaged, and how exciting is that!! Wait, but now you have to hire a bunch of vendors to turn all those dreams into a reality. What a task, especially when it may be your first time! Chances are you have had some experience with purchasing flowers, you can tell which venue suits you based on your style, you know you cannot compromise on photography and as far as the food and cake…well, you know what you like to eat! Couples often secure all the above mentioned and more before someone asks them the magic question, “So who is going to perform your ceremony?” Oh that’s right, the officiant! Although we are the ONLY vendor you actually need to have a legal ceremony, we are usually last on the list simply because you may not know what we do and what is important to look for when selecting one.
Once you begin to look, you will find that you have many options of people who can legally unite you and your true love. Options may include your church clergy member, your Uncle Bill who is a retired minister, your friend who got ordained online recently and googled some great wedding verbiage, the amateur officiant who has a few under their belt with a bargain rate of a $100 service because it’s just something they “really love to do in their spare time” and then you have the professional wedding officiant. Can all these people perform a legal marriage ceremony? Depending on your state requirements, potentially yes. Are all these people qualified to create and execute a flawless ceremony that will set the tone for your entire celebration? Absolutely not!
The fact is, there is more to officiating a wedding than standing up and reading out of a book for twenty minutes. When this is someone’s profession, they are going to be as dedicated as you are from beginning to end, and they know their reputation rides on their reliability. We frequently get last minute calls when the amateur or the person juggling too many responsibilities has to cancel. Unfortunately, the well-meaning friend who was enthusiastic in the beginning often begins to get cold feet as the date draws near, and they realize what a huge responsibility it is. Texas Wedding Ministers only hires professional officiants and has a no cancellation guarantee, so you will never have to worry about this.
A professional in the wedding industry will be important when it comes time to collaborate with the other vendors you have hired for your wedding. Many of our responsibilities overlap, so you want someone who can professionally and efficiently work as a team to create a smooth ceremony. This requires that the officiant has the knowledge and experience to understand all the components, so they know when it is helpful to step in but also how not to step on others. This is not something that you can research online and learn. It takes training and experience.
Training and experience will also provide the skills necessary to not only predict and prevent unforeseen issues, but also maintain composure and control of the ceremony if challenges do arise. With all the planning and preparation, there are many uncontrollable variables such as weather, external noise, overbearing family and guests (trust me on this one), technical difficulties and other distractions. A professional officiant will not be thrown off by these events but will remain poise and possibly even work it into the ceremony, charmingly reminding everyone that life is a spontaneous adventure! Bottom line, you will be the center of attention and you need to trust your officiant so that you, at no time, feel awkward during one of the most special moments of your life.
This is, in fact, YOUR special moment! In addition to having someone with the expertise to guide you, you also want to know that your vision for your ceremony will be heard and incorporated. That could mean an outdoor venue rather than a church, or interfaith or multicultural ceremony that honors both of your backgrounds, etc. As meaningful as it can be to have a family member, friend or longtime church official conduct your ceremony, we often hear that due to your close relationship, what they envision may not always match what you are wanting. Also, clergy members may be bound to a certain doctrine or customs that do not resonate with you. This can lead to uncomfortable conversations, hurt feelings or going along with a ceremony that does not authentically represent you. An insightful, professional officiant that you hire will get to know you well enough to create that personalized touch and will not get offended by your suggestions or wishes.
Reverend Esparza was fantastic! We actually had complications with our first officiant (a family member) a few weeks before the wedding… He was so friendly and walked us through the wedding ceremony process… He helped us plan out everything we wanted in our ceremony and he was always available for questions. He is a great speaker and was great with my family and guests. We are so grateful for how memorable our ceremony turned out!
Researching before committing is never a bad idea! The officiant is the master of ceremonies and can make or break one of the most important days of your life. When comparing officiants, price plays a big role but make sure you know what you are getting for the price. Ask yourself: Do the officiants I am looking into hiring:
- Have a backup plan if they cannot perform my ceremony and what is that backup plan?
- Is the officiant insured? Is my ceremony covered if they are no-show or the officiant is late forcing me to incur late fees with other vendors?
- Has the officiant been properly trained and have the experience and professionalism my ceremony deserves?
- If I can’t contact the officiant does the officiant have a concierge service or office I can call?
- Is their pricing within the national average? Why would any officiant charge less than most of the other officiants I have spoken to?
- Does the officiant have reviews, videos and other resources that display their work?
If choosing Texas Wedding Ministers you can be assured all these important elements are covered, alleviating you of stress so you may enjoy and focus on what the day is truly about “Marrying the one you LOVE!”
Reverend Rene Esparza
TX Wedding Minsters Concierge Service