Below are answers to some questions you may have about Ceremonies by Design, Reverend Joan and/or preparing for your wedding day. Of course you can always ask questions directly using any of the contact methods listed on my contact page.
- What is included in our wedding service?
- How do we get our marriage license?
- Can you provide a non-religious ceremony?
- Can we include our children?
- Can we include cultural rituals?
- Can we write our own vows?
- Do you come to the rehearsal / reception dinner?
- Do you have back-ups in the event of an emergency?
- Do you require or provide pre-marital counseling?
When you partner with me, Reverend Joan, you get all of this:
- You get as many meetings and as much correspondence as it takes to compose your wedding ceremony. Tasteful. Meaningful. Personal. Just the way you want it.
- You get a full rehearsal of your wedding ceremony (separate fee). But, if you choose to, you may forego a rehearsal. Instead, we can do a quick walk-through just before the ceremony.
- I arrive early to make sure everything is ready. I check that flowers are where they should be, ceremony props are ready, sound system is ready and musical cues are coordinated. I get everyone lined up for the processional and make sure the timing is seamless. And I make sure that your wedding ceremony is performed smoothly and tastefully. Just the way you’ve dreamed.
- I make sure everything is legal and proper. I take care of filing your Marriage License with the appropriate county office.
- You get a Marriage Certificate – suitable for framing if you wish.
- And you get a keepsake copy of your wedding ceremony. After all, we do collaborate together to design a uniquely profound ceremony to honor and celebrate your marriage. I want you to have a copy. Something to cherish for the rest of your lives together.
The state of Wisconsin requires that the bride and groom apply for the marriage license in person so that is something I cannot do for you. In the event of extenuating circumstances (such as one partner being in the military), the County Clerk would make a determination if they can issue your license with only one of you present. They try to accommodate where they can.
- You must apply for your license with the County Clerk’s office in the county you live. If you do not live in Wisconsin, you must apply for your license with the County Clerk in the county your marriage will be taking place.
- You cannot apply for the license more than 30 days prior to the marriage but no less than 6 days as there is a 5-day waiting period after you apply before you can pick up the license. Again, in the event of extenuating circumstances, most County Clerks will waive the waiting period.
- You will need to tell them the date and location of the ceremony. They will want the county as well as the city/village/township. For example, if your ceremony is out in the country and not part of a city or village, you will need the township name. Your venue should be able to provide that information for you.
- You can do a search for the County Clerk “marriage license” for your county.
Certainly. A secular ceremony will provide a unique, yet non-religious feel to your ceremony.
Absolutely! Children are a delightful addition to a wedding ceremony. I can create a component that would honor the family you are creating. One way to do that is when the bride and groom profess their “vows to the children.” A Unity Ceremony is another wonderful way to involve children.
You certainly can. I have conducted many ceremonies in which we integrated customs from different cultures. It provides a heartfelt way to honor your families and your heritage.
Yes you can. If you want me to provide samples to help you get started, I am happy to do that. You can keep them secret from each other, too. I would simply keep them out of our working ceremony draft when we are revising and editing. I would have them printed on card stock for you to read from so you don’t have to worry about memorizing anything.
I do not. I feel that is your time with your families and friends. If you are wanting a dinner prayer, I always suggest that you have the groom’s dad do that. When you think about it, he’s the one guy who doesn’t really get much attention on your wedding day! I am always happy to provide some sample prayers that you might like to use.
Yes. I have several resources who could step in if there is an unforeseen emergency.
I do not require pre-marital counseling, but will provide that if you wish to have it. I charge $40/hour and the sessions are held at my office.