Really, he isn’t just our officiant he is my uncle first. My Uncle Michael has been officiating weddings for more than 20 years. When I was a little girl he preformed my aunt’s wedding in Golden Gate Park.
My Uncle Michael is ordained through The Universal Life Church. For those of you who are unfamiliar with The Universal Life Church, it is an on-line ministry where anybody is free to become ordained “without intolerance or antiquated dogma”. When my uncle first became ordained it was through the mail. But now you can become ordained through their website. Basically, it give the person that is ordained through their church the ability to perform ceremonies such as weddings and baptisms while practicing their own beliefs, whatever they might be. In California, the rules about who can preform a wedding are pretty lenient. In some counties you can even get a permit just for the day so you can perform a wedding without becoming ordained. I appreciate living in a state where the person marrying us can be someone important to us outside of religion.
Will and I were both raised in Catholic homes but neither of us practices at this point in our lives. Getting married in the Catholic church, taking marriage classes through the church and promising to go to church more often would seem disingenuine and hypocritical to both of us. That being said, hiring a random officiant off the street seems impersonal and lacks the feeling of family we are hoping for on our wedding day.
I am excited that our wedding will be filled with people we love and appreciate and that are excited for us to start our lives together. My Uncle Mike knows how to find the balance between a lighthearted ceremony and the seriousness of the commitment Will and I are making to each other. Best of all, he knows us both personally so the ceremony will not be a cookie cutter speech with our names thrown in. It will take into account the things that are important to us and be representative of the ideas we have about our relationship and our future together.