So you've been asked by friends to officiate at their wedding. You're entrusted with a great honor and responsibility. You may be a little nervous about the whole prospect. Perhaps you have questions such as, "How much does it cost to become an ordained minister?" or "How do I perform a wedding?" You're in the right place to get these and other answers. Keep reading to learn about getting ordained, solemnizing marriages, and more.
Become an Ordained Minister Online
Before you can perform a wedding, you'll need to get ordained. Fortunately, you don't have to attend eight years of seminary to become an ordained minister free online. The Universal Life Church welcomes all people regardless of their race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, and other identities. In support of that belief, the ULC offers ordination to those aged 18 and older.
Becoming an ordained minister is free through the ULC. Your no-cost ordination starts by completing the ordination request form:
- Enter your full legal name.
- Fill in your email address, city, and state.
- Choose a password, then type it in again to confirm.
After you submit your information, you should check your email. You'll receive a message from the ULC confirming your ordination status. Be sure to keep this email for your records. You also now have an account on the ULC website, which allows you to access your minister profile and purchase items from the Ministry Supply Store.
Review Local Wedding Laws
Before you jump into officiating weddings, you should learn about state wedding laws. After all, these regulations differ by jurisdiction. Some specify waiting periods, while others do not. Deadlines for submitting completed marriage licenses also vary — and as an officiant, you're responsible for filling out each license and returning it to the issuing office.
Depending on where the couple is tying the knot, you may have to register as a minister with the local authorities. Just in case, it's helpful to have an official copy of your ordination credentials. Most ministers benefit from the Classic Wedding Kit, which includes your ordination certificate plus a wallet-sized card and a wedding handbook for officiants. Some areas also require a letter of good standing, which you can also order through the Ministry Supply Store.
Learn How To Perform Weddings
In the ULC's Minister Training Center, you can learn some important essentials about weddings. Whether you're officiating a religious or non-religious ceremony, it will follow a basic script. Reviewing ceremony script examples can help you learn about weddings' order and structure.
You'll probably collaborate with the couple to create a custom script or modify an existing one. If you're stuck for ideas, try the wedding script generator. While you're at it, you should make sure that their script meets your jurisdiction's legal requirements. In most cases, that means having both a Declaration of Intent and Pronouncement. Both the ceremony script examples and the script generator automatically include such language, but review your final script just to be certain.
Prepare for the Big Day
So now you've learned how to become an ordained minister online. With free ordination, access to training, and easy-to-find information on wedding laws, you have many resources to help you get started. Just as scheduling and time management is important for the couple, it's also essential for you as an officiant. Stay in frequent contact with the couple to make sure you're all on the same page.
When you become ordained minister online free certificate, you don't have to stop with your friends' wedding. You can perform more ceremonies and even become a professional officiant. Many ULC ministers choose ordination as a fun and rewarding way to help their communities.