What is a wedding celebrant?

May 7, 2020 | Blog, Weddings

All your questions answered …….

A wedding celebrant is a person who creates and presents personalised wedding ceremonies.

What are the differences between a Wedding Celebrant and a Registrar?

The difference between a wedding celebrant and a registrar are the legalities.  A registrar is authorised to conduct legally binding marriages in licensed venues.  A wedding celebrant is professionally trained and has a unique passion for their job.

The relationship between the wedding celebrant and a couple is trusted, privileged and special.    Working together they create non-legally binding ceremonies celebrating your love, your relationship, your story.

what is a wedding celebrant

How will the ceremonies differ?

A wedding celebrant led ceremony is flexible, personalised and completely focused on the love and story of you as a couple.   The tailor made ceremony puts you at the heart of it.  It will reflect your vision of your day without any rules and regulations.

You will work very closely together to create a bespoke ceremony that reflects your values and beliefs with no scripts, no templated words.   Each one is unique.  A celebrant led ceremony can be held anywhere.  No license is required.

A registrar led ceremony can only be held in a Registry office or a licensed venue.   They are legally binding.  You are unlikely to meet your Registrar beforehand and are rarely permitted to stray from the statutory wording.  Furthermore no wording or music may contain any religious or spiritual references.

But will my ceremony be real?

Celebrants will tell you of course it’s real.  Isn’t your ceremony about much more than just the legal formalities?   Your ceremony is about you both making your promises to one another and exchanging rings  The ceremonial part of your day is the real bit.  Not the signing of a piece of paper.

Still unsure consider these questions?

Do you have a ceremony when you register a baby’s birth?

No.  You have a christening or baby naming ceremony at a later date.

Do you have a ceremony when you register a death?

No.  Funerals are not legal ceremonies.

Absolutely the same applies to wedding ceremonies.  The real part of the ceremony is the exchanging of promises and rings with your friends and families as witnesses.

what is a wedding celebrant

When and how do we complete the legal formalities?

It’s very straightforward.  First you have to give notice at your local registry office.  Then most couples normally on day the week before their wedding head back to the registry office to complete the legalities.  It is a very simple affair requiring yourselves and two witnesses.

When should I book my wedding celebrant?

This is an important decision and can make the difference between having a ceremony restricted by regulations or an absolutely personalised one.  It is therefore essential that you find a wedding celebrant who fits in with your vision and with whom you have a connection.  So don’t delay.

Using wedding celebrants is becoming more and more popular especially now couples are realising that there are alternatives to the fairly standard registrar ceremony.   So discussing availability and booking your wedding celebrant should be right up there with securing all your other suppliers.

Which wedding celebrant is best for me?

 This is a very personal decision.  Your wedding celebrant plays an incredibly important role in your day.  They will be the person standing alongside you and guiding you through your wedding ceremony.  It’s intimate, a little bit scary and exciting.  So you need to choose someone who you can relate to.

You should choose a wedding celebrant who specialises in the type and tone of ceremony you are dreaming of.  During the process of creating your ceremony you will be sharing personal information about your lives.  It is essential you have a connection with your  celebrant and feel comfortable with them.

Your perfect wedding celebrant must be a great communicator.  A storyteller with an eloquent voice and the ability to set the right ambience for your ceremony, whilst also helping to keep you both calm.  They should be a reassuring and friendly presence.

Not only will they be supporting and celebrating with you but they will also need to be highly organised, confident and knowledgeable.  There are lots of boxes to tick so do your research.  You will know when you have found the right person.

what is a wedding celebrant

Where do I find a wedding celebrant

Like all things nothing beats a personal recommendation.   So ask amongst your friends.

Ask your venue or a wedding planner you have already booked for their recommendations.  It is likely that they will have worked alongside different celebrants and will be able to give you an honest recommendation.  If the same name keeps cropping up the chances are you are onto a winner.

Celebrants often exhibit at wedding fairs which will give you the chance to meet a then face to face.  And lastly, from the comfort of your home, and just a google search click away head over to a well established online directory such as The Celebrant Directory and there he or she might be waiting for you.  Always read the testimonials.  They will give you a good insight.

And so to conclude don’t be put off just because a wedding celebrant may be the lesser known alternative to a registrar.   Be a trail blazer amongst your friends.  Own your ceremony.  Book a wedding celebrant and you will discover the incredibly significant and precious  role they play in your wedding journey.

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