Wedding Ceremony Options

Published March 1, 2015

Vancouver Wedding Ceremony

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In Vancouver I meet a lot of couples who don't actually know their legal options for getting married. The world hasn't done a good job educating the masses. Most people think they're stuck with someone they don't know or don't like, when really, you have some amazing options in Vancouver. Vital statistics are the ones who oversee this arm of government to ensure they're tracking who is married, when they get married and the legal details of all that. They've given TWO groups of people "power invested in them" to oversee and legally process marriages

Religious People
This is typically what you see in movies. A priest, a rabbi, a pastor usually in their place of worship. It's typically a Church or a temple or a hip pastor overseeing a wedding down at the beach. The content of the ceremony is typically religious and they tend to just do ceremonies in their facilities. Some require pre-marital counselling and some refuse to do the wedding if you're currently living together. There is usually a set amount of content and the duration on average is about 1 hour in length. You can find these people by Googling Church, Synagogue, Temple etc. and they're usually super friendly and excited to share about their religion. Cost is typically a donation to their place of worship or that you become a member of their Church or you have a family member who is connected to the Church. Vancouver Wedding Ceremony

Photo by Randal Kurt Photography

Marriage Commissioners (or some call them Justice of the Peace or JPs)
These are some fun people. They Government asks that they be 65 or older (retired) and have their driver's license. There's a bunch per city and you can find them by searching here https://www.vs.gov.bc.ca/cgi-bin/search/marriage_commissioners.cgi
The website isn't the best for getting to know them (the photos aren't that great). Ideally they'd add videos one day. They typically do a handful of ceremonies a day and don't like it when the ceremony is running late. They have a short and sweet order of service they typically do and they're good at it. They're professional, good people who love doing what they do, because the price point, you can't beat. Last time I heard it was $75 plus travel.

 

Vancouver Wedding Ceremony

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Officiants
These are a group of people who call themselves this because they're a sub-group of Religious People. They're ordained people (which gives them the power invested in them by the Province of British Columbia) who do non-religious ceremonies. They do this as a way to connect with the community, as a way to invest in people and to spread the love and ensure people have more options for getting married. There's a few websites where you can peruse your options. They've all typically made videos, have facebook pages and made micro-businesses out of doing this. Vancity Wedding Directory has a few posted here. Their prices range from $250-$1250 and have a range of experience, background, professionalism and creativity.

Creative Bonus Option
You and your partner can hire a Marriage Commissioner to do your legalization and then you can hire a friend, actor, magician, clown or anyone really do your wedding ceremony. You can be as creative or as slick as you want to be with it. You have that choice.

About the Writer

Darian Kovacs from Vancouver Officiant is a seasoned officiant in the Vancouver area. He's recruited officiants and developed resources, tools and training for officiants over the years to ensure Vancouver couples have quality people to choose from.