Wedding Officiant

Find a wedding officiant near Raleigh, NC

Find a wedding officiant near Raleigh, NC

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Top 10 Wedding Officiants near Raleigh, NC

Q & A

Answers to commonly asked questions from the experts on Thumbtack.

What’s the best way to set up a consultation or an appointment with a wedding officiant during the COVID-19 pandemic?

The safest way to conduct a consultation during COVID-19 is virtually. Ask wedding officiants near you if they can have a phone call or a virtual appointment over video chat. If they can, make sure to ask them any questions you have about upcoming work. Discuss what precautions, if any, they have in place to ensure safety. You might consider asking if they accept digital payments or if they can complete the work remotely, without any in-person contact. 

Do wedding officiants offer remote or virtual services?

Reach out to wedding officiants in your area, and ask them if they can offer a remote or virtual ceremony. Some officiants may be willing to meet in person while maintaining 6 feet of distance, while others may prefer to conduct the entire service over the phone or a video call service such as Skype or Zoom.

Familiarize yourself with the social distancing rules in your community, city and state, and move forward only if both you and the officiant are comfortable with the arrangement. 

Are there ways to be safe if I hire a wedding officiant when social distancing?

If you decide to hire a wedding officiant when social distancing, ask if the officiant can offer remote services. Some wedding officiants are choosing to conduct services virtually and/or stand more than 6 feet away from the parties. Discuss possible arrangements with your wedding officiant, and familiarize yourself with your local community guidelines, as well as the CDC’s guidelines for social distancing. Only move forward if you and the officiant both feel comfortable.

You may want to implement extra precautions, such as using digital payments instead of exchanging cash, sanitizing all involved spaces and waving instead of shaking hands. 

Can I use digital payments to pay for a wedding officiant?

Ask your wedding officiant if they accept digital payments. Many professionals are accept payment via Venmo, PayPal, Square Cash, Apple Pay, Zelle and other online platforms. Professionals may be more willing to switch to digital payments during the COVID-19 pandemic, as this is typically considered safer than using cash or credit cards. You can see which digital payment options officiants accept by reviewing their online profiles.

How can I find out if a wedding officiant is considered an essential COVID-19 service provider?

The definition of essential services varies by location, so you will need to visit your state or city government website to learn what is considered an essential service in your area.

For more information on a national level, read CISA’s publication on critical infrastructure workers. Some, but not all, jurisdictions follow CISA’s definitions of critical infrastructure.

Does a wedding officiant need to enter my home?

This depends on the location of your wedding. Unless the ceremony is being held in your home, a wedding officiant will not need to enter your home before the ceremony. Some couples are choosing to stand outside or go to a vacant public place, so the officiant can conduct the ceremony while maintaining 6 feet of distance. Ask your wedding officiant what kinds of arrangements they offer, including virtual or remote services.

Who performs a wedding ceremony?

Anyone who is authorized by the court or a credible online source has the power to perform a wedding ceremony. Traditionally, wedding officiants were ordained members of a religious organization or civil officiants authorized by the court to legally marry two people. With the increasing customization and personalization of weddings, many couples are asking a friend or family member to become ordained and act as their wedding officiant. Wedding officiants can represent a wide range of backgrounds including Christian, Catholic, Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, nondenominational, interfaith or nonreligious. There is no legally required structure for a wedding ceremony, so couples can customize the language of the ceremony and their vows in any way they desire (though members of some religions may have specific requirements). To legally validate the marriage, the couple and the wedding officiant must sign a marriage certificate after the ceremony verifying the date and names of those involved. The wedding officiant should then submit the certificate to the court, which will in turn mail an official marriage certificate to the newly married couple.

What does it mean to officiate a wedding?

To officiate a wedding is to oversee the official union of two people in marriage. A wedding officiant is vested with the power to legitimize your union in the eyes of the court. An officiant also sets the tone for your ceremony, leading the couple through their vows and shaping the experience with the words they choose and the pace they set. An officiant may be based in a religious faith, may be an interfaith officiant, may be a secular officiant, or may be a friend or family member who has received ordination online.

You can have a traditional wedding officiated, or you can also have an officiant oversee a commitment ceremony, a vow renewal or an elopement. Once the wedding is complete, the officiant will ask you to sign the wedding certificate, and will then submit the document to the court on your behalf. This makes your marriage legal. Wedding officiants work with you no matter how simple or elaborate you would like your ceremony to be. The more involved wedding officiants are in the planning and customization of the ceremony, the more they will typically charge.

How much does it cost to officiate a wedding?

The national average cost to hire a wedding officiant is $150-$200. Wedding officiant rates are affected by the date of the ceremony, the time of day, and how far the officiant has to travel. Some officiants may charge extra for additional ceremonies like unity candles or sand ceremonies, as well as the cost of the supplies. Many wedding officiants have higher rates for larger weddings and lower rates for smaller, more intimate ceremonies. Personalizing the ceremony means a lot to some couples. Wedding officiants may have flat rates for standard ceremony templates, perhaps $100-$125, and charge more for a more customized experience, such as $150-$200. This allows the couple to collaborate with the wedding officiant as they are building a unique ceremony script. At the pre-wedding meeting, the officiant will ask whether the couple plans to write their own vows and how much input they have about the rest of the wording and flow of the ceremony. Additional planning meetings and extra communication can add up to a higher overall cost. If your venue has parking or other fees, you may need to pay on behalf of the officiant. Often wedding officiants can rent sound systems and wireless mics if you have an outdoor wedding location or venue that is not wired. These extras will also increase the overall cost.

Reviews for Raleigh wedding officiants
Ashton B.
John did a wonderful job officiating our wedding. He exceeded our expectations when it came to planning/preparing for our ceremony and helped make things very seamless. I HIGHLY recommend John as an officiant. He took the time to get to know my husband and I and was always available anytime we had questions. I couldn't have asked for a better officiant for our wedding!
Couples Coaching & Individual Guidance LLCCouples Coaching & Individual Guidance LLC
Thumbtack Customer
Ben was a great Wedding Officiant. He went above and beyond our expectations. Easy to work with and a 5 star professional.
Ben Poston WeddingsBen Poston Weddings
Ashley N.
Alex did an excellent job officiating our wedding on May 4th, 2019. He was easy to communicate with prior to the wedding and sent us drafts of our ceremony. He was responsive to our questions and helped us craft the perfect interfaith ceremony we wanted. Alex even officiated a lovely private Ketubah signing for us prior to the ceremony, which was both beautiful and informative. We received many compliments on both the ceremony and our officiant from our guests. We strongly recommend Alex to any couple looking for an officiant.
Ceremonies By AlexCeremonies By Alex
Thumbtack Customer
Alex actually performed two ceremonies for us :) One in October when we eloped together and another in December when we had our "official" wedding ceremony and reception. My husband and I are so pleased with the services he provided . Alex gave us two very different lovely ceremonies and our guests at the wedding loved his words. Look no further if you're looking for a officiant !
Ceremonies By AlexCeremonies By Alex
Tomeka C.
Ms. Barber officiated our wedding on June 29, 2019. She was very pleasant, great sense of humor and most importantly professional and done an excellent job. We highly recommend her! You will not be disappointed! Thank you!
Elegantly Done  Weddings by TheaElegantly Done Weddings by Thea
Vee K.
Awesome! Super flexible and tailored the ceremony service perfectly with our needs. COVID caused our wedding event to be rescheduled 3 times and Mr. Gantt worked with me to remain our officiant through a year and a half of postponement! Also because of the weird COVIDness we got legally married to keep our date but had the celebration later. We did the vows we had written and Mr. Gantt did a super job of adjusting his script to suit the event. Our celebration was a medium size outdoor wedding that was non-traditional, pretty informal and easy-going and it was officiated perfectly for just that but I could see him doing a more formal event too. You can tell he really enjoys what he does. It was a little difficult to get a hold of him sometimes but he always responded and I could not have asked for a better fit for our wedding officiant! Thank you!
Rev.Jackie GanttRev.Jackie Gantt
Allison P.
Sharon did such a wonderful job officiating our small intimate ceremony. We loved the ideas she gave us to put together the service and worked our ideas into it. We didn't rehearse anything and the ceremony was executed without a hitch. She arrived early and was very patient with all the excitement. It was just how we imagined our wedding would go. We are so pleased and would recommend Sharon to officiate!
This Reverend Loves WeddingsThis Reverend Loves Weddings
Georgina H.
Absolutely amazing officiant. Super flexible for the storm that was due to hit Raleigh while we were getting married, she was able to capture us as a couple PERFECTLY. Our guests were were also very impressed and believed that we had been talking and getting to know one another for weeks in advance. My now mother-in-law even said she wished her other son who was married a month before us had used this officiant for their wedding. Absolute perfection.
P&M Notary and Officiant (Bilingual)P&M Notary and Officiant (Bilingual)
Cathy C.
My husband and I loved working with both Rebecca and Emily. Rebecca had another event booked the day of our wedding; so she wrote the script but it was Emily who attended our rehearsal and day of the wedding. Both of these ladies were professional and on their game. Sending over several samples for us to get a feel of what we did and didn’t like to create a ceremony that was perfect for us. They also had us complete a questionnaire separately and held the responses until the day of which made it all the more special to hear during the ceremony knowing it came from both of us. Emily was a great officiant. She has the most amazing demeanor and you could just tell how invested she was in our day. I had no idea what to expect working with wedding Officiants, but both Rebecca and Emily blew us out of the water. Highly recommend them for your special day.
Oak City CeremoniesOak City Ceremonies
Claudia H.
Alex was awesome! I hired Alex for my sisters wedding. Not only are his fees exceptionally reasonable, but his services were right on point. He officiated the wedding just as he was asked. He was patient with us, extremely kind, very professional, and more than flexible. He was punctual and very accomodating given a last minute change that he was asked to make. He made everyone feel very comfortable and at ease. His choice of words were just absolutely beautiful and soothing to the nervous parents and couple. I totally recommend Alex! You will be extremely satisfied and happy he is who you chose to officiate your ceremony. My sister and her husband (and I) give him two thumbs up!
Ceremonies By AlexCeremonies By Alex
Amanda T.
Rev. Todd officiated our wedding in Raleigh, NC a week ago. Everything about the ceremony was so amazing!! Todd delivered an absolutely beautiful, traditional wedding ceremony and something we will remember the rest of our lives! He was so helpful, responsive, punctual and professional. If we had any questions, he was so quick to give us an answer! Thank you so much again Todd for truly making our day so special! It was perfect in every way.
Rev. Dr. Todd SuttonRev. Dr. Todd Sutton
Thumbtack Customer
Ben was the officiant for our wedding ceremony. He was very responsive as soon I contacted him. He was very nice, flexible, and always kept in mind what my husband and I wanted. He has a great voice for projecting in a ceremony. Ben put everyone at ease with his sense of humor and kindness. I would recommend Ben to anyone!
Ben Poston WeddingsBen Poston Weddings
Swapna K.
Rev. Jackie happily obliged to drive all the way to Raleigh from Wilmington to officiate my then fiance and me. On the wedding day, he was very amicable and walked us through all the steps carefully to make sure we both were comfortable. He also guided us on getting the marriage certificate. Rev. Jackie was a delight to work with!
Rev.Jackie GanttRev.Jackie Gantt
Emily M.
My new husband and I could not have asked for a better Wedding Officiant experience. Ben worked with us to craft a perfectly personalized ceremony which is all we could have asked for. Our marriage license was submitted promptly 2 days after our ceremony. Thank you so much for a wonderful experience, Ben! Best, Emily
Ben Poston WeddingsBen Poston Weddings
Rashad A.
Amazing experience. Dr. Williams is a consummate professional and amazing spiritual being, he made our wedding one that will be memorable for not only our lifetime but all of those who were fortunate to witness the event. To all who use this service, if you want the best to officiate your ceremony, you need look no further... Dr. Williams is the very best.
Dr. Hubert WilliamsDr. Hubert Williams
Patricia G.
Mr. Scott was a wonderful choice for the wedding I planned, which was small and intimate. He arrived early and did an outstanding job of officiating my wedding. I honestly don't think I could have made a better choice. He was kind, humorous and helped to make my day beautiful. Everything was exactly how I wanted it to be. I'd recommend Mr. John Henry Scott to any bride to be. His wonderful personality and warm smile is a bonus to his kindness and professionalism. Thank you Mr. Scott. The Jacksons
Rev.Jackie GanttRev.Jackie Gantt
Penny P.
My new husband and I were extremely satisfied with Pastor Chris as our wedding officiant. He went above and beyond to give us a beautiful, meaningful, and Godly ceremony. We loved how he included the history of our relationship, along with reinforcing the elements of commitment. The entire experience with Pastor Chris was outstanding, from our initial meeting through the signing of our marriage certificate. He took care of every detail, allowing us a lovely, stress-free wedding. Additionally, we were impressed that Pastor Chris traveled two hours in bad weather, and still arrived early for our wedding ceremony! He is definitely someone you can count on to add to the joy of your special day!!!
Pastor Chris ThompsonPastor Chris Thompson
Kay M.
Alex was awesome!! He officiated our wedding ceremony in a rainstorm (flooded streets and all) in the middle of a garden with absolutely no problem! He made our day so very special despite the weather conditions and location. Our ceremony was beautiful! I would recommend Alex any day for ANY occasion! We are definitely hiring him for our anniversary celebration next! Alex, you are the best!!! Thank you so much for your time and commitment to our joyous day!!
Ceremonies By AlexCeremonies By Alex
Thumbtack Customer
We can't thank Alex enough for officiating our daughter's wedding at Caffe Luna in Raleigh, NC. He was truly an integral part of a wonderful celebration. His thoughtfulness and attention to detail impressed all those who attended. The way he captured both the bride and groom - you would have thought he knew them for years. Our daughter and son-in-law enjoyed the process and found him very easy to work with. Our family and friends would highly recommend Alex for your special day.
Ceremonies By AlexCeremonies By Alex
Jamie B.
Mr. Poston has been understanding and prompt of every question my Fiancee and I have had. Mr. Poston offers a great and thourough service for a great price. Mr. Poston has been very patient and kind through the Covid-19 crisis, which has been helpful in these uncertain, frustrating, and worrisome times. I definitely recommend his services as a wedding officiant. I consider my fiancee and I very lucky to have been able to book Mr. Poston.
Ben Poston WeddingsBen Poston Weddings
Thumbtack Customer
Ben went above and beyond what we expected. He organized and led the rehearsal. We really like that he gave us the opportunity to either make our ceremony exactly how we wanted and/or he provided selections and suggestions in a concise put together document. Of course we wanted to pick out everything ourselves, but in the end when time had run out and we had not done our part, Ben's program was already done, well liked and recieved but more imortantly, it was wonderfully written with 3 different options depending on how secular/non secular we wanted to be. On our wedding day Ben was super helpful, and we felt him a friend because we had seen and talked to him numerous times throughout our 6 month planning process. When we first met with him, he explained that he got into officiating because his daughter wanted him to officiate her wedding and he further explained how emotionally rewarding this position was, so he decided to make it a career. We think Ben made a great choice to change careers because his service is truly something special! Thanks Ben!
Ben Poston WeddingsBen Poston Weddings
Sharon S.
If you are looking for someone to officiate your wedding, look no further. Dr. Hubert will provide you with 5 star service. He truly cares about providing each of his couples with high quality service. He takes the time to learn the love story, not just the names. He asks you what you want included in the ceremony, and will customize the service into a one of a kind memorable event. My family hasn't stopped talking about how wonderful Dr. Hubert's ceremony was. Please do yourself a favor and start a conversation with Dr. Hubert. You will not be disappointed.
Dr. Hubert WilliamsDr. Hubert Williams
Thumbtack Customer
Ben was truly the perfect fit for our wedding. He worked with the groom an I as we made together a script that was perfect for our theme and what we envisioned. He kept us on our toes making sure we were organized and didn't forget the things we needed to officially become a married couple. If I could do it all over again, I would definitely pick Ben again. He is worth the recommendation and I'm truly grateful to him for how smooth he kept things and less frightening he made things.
Ben Poston WeddingsBen Poston Weddings
Mariano L.
Ben was amazing to work with and we cannot say enough about his service during our ceremony at the Umstead Hotel & Spa in Cary. We had a couple of unusual requests for Ben, with our service being interfaith, and Ben was quick to provide ideas we hadn't even thought of; along with a wide array of options for making the ceremony personal to us. We also do not live in the Raleigh area, but Ben was quick to accommodate by FaceTiming with us in order get to know us and put together our ceremony. Ben was extremely responsive, professional, and pleasant to work with. I would without a doubt recommend using Ben if you are in need of an officiant for your wedding!
Ben Poston WeddingsBen Poston Weddings
Nicole R.
Ben has been an amazing man to work with from the very start. We met about a little less than a year from the big ceremony date. Ben was extremely accommodating when I contacted him about marrying my husband earlier than the planned date to make sure my husbands sick father would be able to be part of our wedding day. We planned our script and invited immediate family. He met us at the Raleigh Rose Garden and we had a very small, quaint 1st wedding. As the 2nd ceremony came closer, we planned out another script for the big day. He helped plan out the script and blessings for the day. He made sure to add in a special reading for my husbands father that has passed. Ben came to our rehearsal the day before our big ceremony. Having Ben there to practice with really helped calm my nerves. On the day of, Ben did an amazing job, dressed professionally and spoke with ease and care. He helped make our wedding day the most beautiful day of our lives. I highly recommend Ben as he is not just a great officiant but he is a wonderful person.
Ben Poston WeddingsBen Poston Weddings
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