As a young bride or groom is working to plan a wedding, the one thing they can’t do without is a wedding officiant. When most people think of a wedding officiant, they usually think of the minister, priest, or rabbi at their local church or synagogue who attended higher education, such as seminary school, to become ordained. However, these days attending seminary school is no longer needed and neither is any kind of belief system; anyone and everyone can become an ordained minister within minutes and at no cost at all.
I found out about this when a friend told me she had become a minister in order to perform the marriage of her friends. I must admit, it intrigued me. As someone who had grown up living right next door to a church, a Sunday school teacher, and choir member, I found it hard to believe that this was possible. When I was 18, my father graduated from seminary school to become a minister, so I was sure it just couldn’t be that easy. But, I was wrong.
I searched online and found the Universal Life Church Monastery and was surprised at what I saw. Not only can you become ordained within minutes and at no cost, but there is no requirement of religious beliefs. The Universal Life Monastery believes that people should have the right and freedom to follow their beliefs in any way they so choose, and therefore anyone should be able to perform services for friends and family. I was amazed and intrigued, so yes, I became an ordained minister.
I never really gave it much thought after I became ordained and never even used it, until 2 friends of mine were looking at having a wedding and couldn’t find a minister they could afford who would come out and do a ranch wedding on horseback. Well, they were telling me this, when all of the sudden it hit me. I told them I was an ordained minister (which of course they thought was quite funny) and that I could marry them. They were thrilled, as they wanted to do this ranch wedding and didn’t really want it to be religious. So, I sat down and created a wedding ceremony to completely fit their personality and it worked out wonderfully.
Now this year, I myself got married. I am older, and so is my husband, and frankly we didn’t want some big wedding. As we both said…been there, done that! So, with that in mind, I did a local search on Craigslist, and sure enough, I was able to find someone advertising that they could perform a wedding anywhere we wanted. I got in touch with this lady, and just as I had suspected, she had been ordained just like I had. She performed our ceremony in the park where we met, and it was just the quick and simple service we wanted.
Over the years, I have thought about advertising myself as a wedding officiant, and I just might do it one of these days. With the economy the way it is, it is always something I can use to make a little side money. Because no matter what the economy is doing, people will always be getting married. For someone who loves to be around weddings, becoming an ordained minister through the Universal Life Monastery is free and easy, and just may open up a new path for you.
Sources: Universal Life Church Monastery
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