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Orlando Wedding ordained officiants – 12 Important Questions to Consider

the rings on the ceremony
  1. Is the wedding officiant ordained through seminary training or through an online course? If having an ‘ ordained wedding minister ‘ is important, then you should verify the officiants’ ordination. It is very easy and common for people to buy their ordination on the internet for about $58.00. If you were to visit one of these ‘online ordination sites’ you will see that these sites promote ‘ordination’ as a business license to do weddings! OUCH! That’s a big difference from those who were called by God, spent 3 years in seminary, underwent strict psychological, ethical, and theological screening and got ecclesiastical endorsement and ordination. Ordination is a ‘Calling from God’. It is a ‘sacred office’ and responsibility-it was never meant to be bought on the internet as a business license!! I believe that God looks unfavorably upon ‘online ordination’ for it cheapens both the office and the role. It also cheats the wedding couple who think that they are paying for an ordained minister but don’t really get one.Be very aware that several states have stopped acknowledging ‘online ordination’. Tennessee is the most recent. The Florida Statutes 741.07 state: That all ordained ministers authorized to solemnize marriages are to be ‘in communion with some church’. Florida and many other states are realizing that the ‘internet’ is not fulfilling the requirements of a valid Church-therefore the ordination is invalid. The institutional Churches (Methodist, Presbyterians, Episcopal, Catholic, etc.) are joining forces and petitioning to the states stop acknowledging the counterfeit ordinations.How do can you tell if the wedding officiant has an internet ordination? The officiants probably will not openly admit it, so ask them about their church ministry. Do they use their ordination in other ways to serve others (or just to do weddings)? What churches have they served? What denomination? If they aren’t serving a mainline church in some capacity as a minister, counselor, visitor, etc then they probably got their ordination from the internet. All of thewedding ministers with A Beautiful Ceremony are fully ordained in mainline institutional churches (Methodist, Nazarene, and Adventist); Teresa is a notary and certainly enjoys doing faith based ceremonies but she makes it clear that she’s a notary.
  2. Why does thewedding officiant do weddings? Are weddings an extension of their ministry or as a means to make money? Listen to see if you feel like you’re just another $$ to them or if you’re somebody special. All of the A Beautiful Ceremony ministers work full time as chaplains within large hospital systems. For us, doing weddings is a means of serving people and a way to fill our energy bank from the emotional drain of hospital chaplaincy. The balance of hospital chaplaincy and happy weddings compliment each other.
  3. What kind of ‘back-up’ do they have if there’s an emergency and they can’t make your ceremony? Do they have last minute back up? Things happen unexpectedly. Wedding officiants should have a good emergency backup plan. A Beautiful Ceremony has a staff of five officiants and rarely are more than two busy at any given time. We also have a list of 15 pastors, chaplains and trusted officiants that we can call at the last moment.
  4. What do the other vendors say about the wedding officiant? Wedding professionals know a lot about each other. The DJs, photographers, and wedding coordinators know what officiants have a reputation for being late, who offers a better stage presence, who forgets names, who speaks too long, etc. Feel free to ask your vendors for recommendations.
    A Beautiful Ceremony is the most recommended team of officiants in all of Orlando. We have built our reputation on dependability, stage presence, customer service and flexibility at competitive price.
  5. What time will the wedding officiant show up before the ceremony? Arriving at least 30 minutes before ceremony time is a standard protocol. Some officiants do not fulfill their promise to arrive within the given time frame. You don’t want the stress of wondering if your officiant will be on time. At A Beautiful Ceremony we are so confident that we’ll be there 30 minutes early that we will pay you double the ceremony fee if we ever compromise the ceremony schedule.
  6. What kind of training does the wedding officiant have? The best officiants follow the protocol dictated by the Association of Bridal Consultants. There’s a definite procedure and etiquette involved in weddings. If the officiant doesn’t know proper ceremony flow and line up of attendants then it can easly disrupt the timing with the DJ, photographer and even caterer! The ceremony protocol helps all the professionals work together by following the same designed game plan. All of the A Beautiful Ceremony staff members are trained according to the Association of Bridal Consultants protocol. We are experts in conducting organized rehearsals and wedding ceremonies.
  7. Is the officiant a member of any professional wedding organizations? There are two very important organizations for wedding professionals. One group is the Wedding Professionals of Central Florida (WPCF). They will not allow any wedding professional to be members of the organization if he/she has a history of poor business practices. WPCF is like the BBB of the wedding industry. The membership in the Orlando Wedding Group is by invitation only. The invitation is only offered to those who have an impeccable reputation. A Beautiful Ceremony was voted ‘Member of the Year’ by WPCF. A Beautiful Ceremony is also a member of Orlando Wedding Group, the Orlando Wedding Professionals, and the Advisory Board for Certified Wedding Professionals.
  8. Does the wedding officiant offer a free consultation? Will they take the time to meet with you? How will you know if they’ll be a good fit for what you want? Hire an officiant you feel comfortable being around. Your wedding day is stressful enough without questioning the ability of the officiant to perform. A Beautiful Ceremony staff offers a free consultation as well as phone interviews if you are not able to meet face-to-face. Phone consultations are especially helpful to review your ceremony options and flow of the ceremony.
  9. What does the wedding officiant offer regarding the ceremony content and planning? Are they able to accommodate your needs for inter-faith traditions, Catholic touches, blended families, allowing you to write your own vows, etc? Do they offer a wide variety of options? Are they flexible enough to give you a unique and personal wedding? At A Beautiful Ceremony, we have the original ‘Ceremony Planning Kit’ that is complete for every possible option! It offers a variety of ceremonies, readings, vows, acts of celebration, etc. By picking what you like the ceremony becomes uniquely your own. Have you seen the ‘Blessing of the Hands’ or ‘The Wine and Love Letter Box’ options Guests love them! (This must be a great kit as it has been plagiarized by at least three local officiants-imitation is the highest form of flattery: ) After you pick your ceremony options we will be glad to review the ceremony order with you.
  10. Does the wedding officiant have a great ‘stage presence’? Average communicators are many. Great communicators are a rarity. We have all been to wedding ceremonies that were mundane, boring, and unoriginal and given without passion. Some officiants are not natural at speaking in public and come across nervous, unorganized, and frazzled. Some just read the ceremony out of their book. It that what you want to see when you look at your wedding pictures and video? The ceremony can’t be repeated. Your officiant is the guardian of the ceremony should be confident, secure, and poised and make the words come alive. At A Beautiful Ceremony we train for perfect stage presence! We study ourselves on video and audio and strive to be the very best in delivery. We know our ceremony material by heart and delivery it with warmth and good eye contact. We believe that it’s not just ‘what’ you say but ‘how’ you say it that makes a difference. We have the highest standards in training and stage presence.
  11. Will the officiant respect your individual religious/spiritual and cultural beliefs? Weddings often bring together people of all different backgrounds, ethnicities, and socio-economic levels. It is paramount that your wedding officiant be able to cater to your needs and know what not to say do as to emboss anybody. Your individual religious and cultural preferences are most important. At A Beautiful Ceremony all of the staff are trained chaplains and are accustomed to working with people from different faiths, cultures and traditions. We respect people’s personal beliefs without trying to impose ours upon them.
  12. What guarantee do they offer? The officiants’ contract or promises are of little value if they don’t have a guarantee to back it up. A Beautiful Ceremony is the only officiants’ group that offers a guarantee. With A Beautiful Ceremony if we do anything to compromise the wedding ceremony we will not only refund the fee but we will double it!

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