I have personally married 7 couples. I know, I know. That’s like the pot calling the kettle man & wife. Whenever I tell someone that, the first question they ask is always, “Wait. What?” They think you need to be a minister who preaches every Sunday to become a wedding officiant. I’ll show you how I do it and how to make money marrying couples (if you want).
First of all, I was ordained online at Universal Life Church. It doesn’t mean you are changing your faith or joining some kind of cult. It’s free and it’s quick. You’ve probably heard it mentioned on TV shows when one character has to marry other characters at the last minute. 🙂
Some famous names you’ll recognize have been ordained at ULC. Lady Gaga, Conan O’Brien, and Stephen Colbert. See? All the cool kids are doing it.
The Universal Life Church (ULC) is the only religious and spiritual denomination in the world which opens its doors to all and welcomes all who ask to get ordained. The ULC Monastery grants ordination without regards to an individual’s religious and spiritual beliefs. Over 20 million ministers have become ordained online worldwide through ULC ordinations.
How to Marry Couples
Before you rush off to be ordained, you’ll need to investigate whether your state allows folks ordained online to marry couples.
Alabama, Connecticut, Virginia, and Tennessee generally don’t recognize the credentials of priests ordained via the Internet. The same holds true in parts of Pennsylvania, certain counties in New York, and (perhaps surprisingly) Las Vegas, according to The New York Times. (FindLaw.com)
One way to be absolutely sure is just to give a quick call to your local county clerk’s office.
Once you’re sure you’re within the law, you can decide what your fee will be and begin to let folks know that you are available.
You can share online, create a website, or advertise in a local paper.
My experience has been that friends tell friends. That’s how news of my services has traveled – word of mouth.
As you’re setting your fee remember to include your cost to travel to and from the venue. I suggest between $100 and $200 per ceremony. Trust me when I tell you that you can get royally “screwed” if you don’t have a price up front. You would be shocked at the number of people who think you should be doing what you’re doing for free. (Ummmm – I’m not a bridesmaid.)
One more thing: when it comes to getting paid, keep in mind that you’ll almost certainly be asked to be in photos before and after the ceremony. That means even more time you’ll be there – a lot more time. It’s never a quick in & out to marry someone.
Are you ordained? Do you have any experience or tips you’d want to share?