Wedding, Elopement, Commitment ,
Renewal of Vows Ceremonies...
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​​​​Marry At The Courthouse?
​Romantic?  Dream Come True?

  • ​​Call me a romantic, but I don't think sitting in the hallway with lawyers and people awaiting sentencing is everyone's idea of a dream wedding.

  • ​The cost may be cheap, if you go during normal business hours, but you may also end up having to come back another day if the judge cannot see you.

  • ​If you decide to make a private appointment for after-hours, or on a weekend, then you could end up spending more than you had planned on spending.

Ron Grillo, Minister 5/12/17

To Rehearse Or Not To Rehearse, That Is The Question:

  • ​     There are obviously differing views on this issue, but I am of the opinion that, even where there are small weddings, a bride, groom and two (2) witnesses, I always do a quick run-through with them, for example: where to stand, when to hand off the bouquet, how to place the ring on your bride's and groom's finger. Simple reminders of, when placing the ring on, put it on as far as it comfortably goes.

  • ​      When it comes to more complicated weddings, not everyone has a wedding coordinator to work with. You can't leave everything up to the Officiant to  make sure that things are in place, people are lined up correctly, people know who is being escorted for the Processional and where they will sit; and who is being escorted out during the Recessional.  If you are placing a runner down, will the two (2) people know whether to start rolling the runner from the front to the back, or from the back to the front?

  • ​     If you have people doing either a reading or singing a song, if they can't make it the day of the rehearsal, that is not a problem... on the day of the wedding, what I will do is find out who the persons are, first of all, then review with them what they are reading or singing and confirm that I have the right information so that when I make an announcement, I won't introduce the wrong person, reading or song. I will also review with them where they will be standing for their portion of the ceremony.

  • ​     Rehearsals, again, are important because, just as Murphy's Law states, if something can go wrong, it will. And, do you really want to take the chance that something could go wrong on your wedding day? I don't think so.  Now, nothing is 100%, you can't say, "If I have a rehearsal, then nothing will go wrong."  The idea is, to cut down on the possibility of something going wrong.

  • ​     Now, for my clients, I have set up rehearsals for the day of the wedding, for those times where it is just not possible to have a separate day of rehearsal. What I do, is:  I arrive 1-1/2 to 2 hours before the start of the wedding and conduct a rehearsal.  If a bride prefers, I will meet with her in private, so that the groom will not see her prior to the ceremony.

  • ​     Now, the last items when it comes to a rehearsal: make sure that the person who is officiating your wedding will also be conducting your ceremony and not someone else. I feel that, when a bride and groom come to me to perform their wedding ceremony, they should feel confident knowing that I will be with them every step of the way.
Ron Grillo, Minister 5/8/17

​Looking For Just The Right Wedding Minister?
Here are some helpful tips and questions to help you choose the "Right Wedding Minister."

·         Once you have found a Minister whether online or through a friend, call them. Ask some questions (you can see below for some suggestions of what to ask), and then set up an in-person meeting at a mutually convenient place and time.
·         If you felt comfortable speaking with the Minister over the phone, and have agreed to meet with them, the meeting will allow you to determine if you are comfortable with their demeanor, their speaking voice, if they seem attentive to what you want for your wedding day.
·         Be as specific as you can with the type of ceremony that you want, for example, denominational or non-denominational Christian wedding, Spiritual wedding, Civil wedding, Interfaith.  If you are not sure as to exactly what you want, ask for their ideas and suggestions.
·         Ask them if you can add elements to the wedding ceremony, for example, writing your own vows, reading poems or scripture, adding a song, Unity Candle, Rose Ceremony, etc. An experienced Minister will have many options that you may pick and choose from.

·         Ask them if they will require you to attend premarital counseling.
·         With regard to rehearsals, I believe every wedding requires a rehearsal, regardless of the length of the ceremony… this helps to calm couples because it shows them exactly what to expect and there will not be any awkward moments due to the unknown. Some Ministers will attend rehearsals, others not… they don’t believe they are necessary.  You need to ask specifically their viewpoint on rehearsals.  Also you need to ask, with regard to the rehearsal, will the Minister personally be in attendance, or, if they can book another wedding, will they send someone else to the rehearsal.
·         Ask the Minister what time they will arrive on the day of your wedding. In my opinion, for most weddings, the Minister should arrive, at a minimum, one hour prior to the start of the ceremony.
·         Ask the Minister, on the day of the wedding, before the ceremony, what will they be doing, for example, meeting with other vendors, meeting with people in your ceremony who may be doing a reading, singing a song, etc.
·         Don’t be afraid to ask the Minister about their training and background, for example what seminary they attended; by whom were they ordained; how many weddings have they performed? This is very important, because not all online-ordained ministers are recognized by state and/or county to perform a wedding ceremony, for example, Connecticut, Virginia, Nevada, and certain counties in New York. 
·         Ask about pricing:  The cost of your ceremony, specifically what that includes.  Does it cost extra for attendance at a rehearsal, is there charge for travel, is a down payment required, when is the total cost due and owing.
·         Get it in writing.  To avoid any confusion, ask for a contract from the Minister, which will outline:  The deposit due, the times of arrival, what services will be provided, and any other issues that were discussed.

​Ron Grillo, Minister   5/8/17