Q Are you really qualified to perform weddings? Is this legal?
A Yes and yes. I’m legally qualified to marry people as an Ordained Clergy Person of the Church of Spiritual Humanism.
Q Wait a minute…clergy? I thought you were an atheist.
A Spiritual Humanists believe in the natural, not the supernatural. But rituals and celebrations are important to human beings. Spiritual Humanism blends rituals and traditions with a foundation of scientific inquiry.
Q So you’re one of those online ministers?
A Yes! For more information on how and why I became a minister of the ULC, and later a Spiritual Humanist Ordained Clergy Person, a First Church of Atheism Minister, and a Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster Minister (yeah, that’s right), visit my About page.
Q Then maybe I should just ask a friend or family member to get ordained and marry us instead.
A Great idea! If you know someone who’s willing and able to perform your wedding, they, too, can be ordained. I do offer a custom ceremony design service to couples who are planning on having a friend or family member marry them. Please contact me if this option interests you.
Q How long have you been doing this?
A I’ve been marrying couples since 2002.
Q Do you perform gay/lesbian weddings?
A Gladly! I hope that our nation will continue to evolve and this question will become obsolete.
Q What do you wear to our ceremony?
A Usually I wear a black or grey suit to weddings. It's professional, gender-neutral, and keeps me out of your spotlight. But if you'd like me to wear my Hogwarts robes or Vulcan ears, I'd be happy to oblige.
Q I have this kind of weird idea for our wedding…are you willing to do something a little different?
A Absolutely. I’ve had some interesting requests. Currently, the couple who had me call out one of their guests and roast him on the spot (right after their vows!) still holds the record for most bravely weird. (Then again, there was the Star Trek-themed wedding where the bride promised to “Cling on” to her husband in their vows…) I love it when couples mix it up and create something that’s entirely their own, and I REALLY love it when folks ask me to throw in their favorite geek/nerd/fandom references.
Q Why won’t you perform a special ceremony from a culture that’s not related to me or you?
A As a Nice White Lady™ who’s learning to do better on planet earth, I’m actively rejecting cultural appropriation these days. Here’s some CA 101 info if you’d like to learn more.
Q Is there anything you don’t/won't do?
A Please visit my ceremonies page for more information. Marrying folks is my real, live day job (although I wear other hats, too). I take it seriously and hold myself to a high standard. My ceremonies page includes my long list of yeses and a short list of nos.
Q We’re having a California wedding, but we’re planning it from out of town. Can you still marry us?
A I’m delighted to work with out-of-town clients via Skype/email/phone in lieu of a personal meeting. Let me know how I may best help you.
Q Do you provide the marriage license?
A Nope; I just marry folks. Please inquire with your local County Clerk to obtain your marriage license.
Q Do you attend our rehearsal?
A Although I do not attend your rehearsal (trust me, I’d be the least necessary person there), I do arrive one hour early on your wedding day. That’s plenty of time to do a mic check if necessary, chat with your photographer and planner, and make sure you and your partner are feeling happy and fine.
Q Can I see a video of you performing a wedding ceremony?
A To be honest, I feel pretty weird about using the intimate moments of my past couples as marketing materials. Sorry about that.
Q I wouldn’t exactly call myself an atheist. Will you still marry us?
A Although I do work with some couples who are self-proclaimed Atheists with a capital “A,” I also work with couples who describe themselves as “spiritual, but not really religious,” as well as couples of faith who feel that their religious beliefs are best left out of their wedding celebration. You don’t have to make any statement of non-faith to work with me.
Q How much do you charge?
A Please visit my rates page for more information. Our initial consultation is free; if you decide to hire me, I take a non-refundable deposit of $100 to hold your date.
Q We're getting married next year. How early should we book with you?
A Although I do often have last-minute spots available, some dates will book a year, or even years in advance. Please contact me early if you’d like me to hold your date.
Q Do you provide/perform any other ceremonies besides weddings?
A Yes! It's been my honor to officiate at nonreligious baby welcoming ceremonies and funeral services. Please reach out if you are seeking a nonreligious celebrant to help honor a loved one's life.
Q Aren’t you afraid that you’re going to hell?