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Serving London, Stratford, Oxford, Lambton and Middlesex Counties --Ontario, Canada
And Other Rites of Passage
Frequently Asked Questions
1. DO WE NEED TO BE MEMBERS OF THE UNITARIAN CHURCH OR OF ANY CHURCH FOR YOUR OFFICIANTS TO MARRY US?
No. Unitarians in Canada have a long history of providing services to many other people, those who belong to other churches and those who do not.
2. MAY WE SPEAK WITH AN OFFICIANT BEFORE WE RESERVE?
Yes. Please feel free to call or e-mail us with your questions.
3. HOW LONG DOES A TYPICAL WEDDING CEREMONY LAST?
Most ceremonies take 15-20 minutes but they might be longer if you choose to add music, readings or other small rituals (handfasting, water or sand ceremony, for example). Ask us for suggestions.
4. CAN WE BE MARRIED WHEREVER WE CHOOSE?
Generally yes. Our chaplains are licensed to perform weddings in Ontario and have done so in public parks, in backyards and on the water. Check with your officiant at your first meeting if you have an unusual site in mind.
5. CAN AN OFFICIANT PERFORM OUR CEREMONY ON ANY DAY OF THE WEEK?
Yes. The only restrictions are the personal schedules of our individual chaplains. If one officiant is not available on a given date, another may be able to step in.
6. MY FIANCE AND I HAVE BEEN MARRIED BEFORE. IS THIS A PROBLEM?
No. As long as you both have proof of your widowed or divorced status (a legal divorce document or a death certificate) you are free to marry again and we will be happy to help you craft a ceremony that suits your situation. Check with City Hall when you apply for your wedding license if you have been divorced outside Canada. Special rules may apply.
7. CAN MY CHILDREN PARTICIPATE IN THE CEREMONY?
Yes. They can accompany you down the aisle, act as witnesses if they are old enough or offer readings or music. We can suggest many ways to include your children in the ceremony, regardless of their age.
8. MAY WE WRITE OUR OWN VOWS? MAY WE HAVE FRIENDS OR FAMILY MEMBERS DO READINGS, BLESSINGS, ETC? MAY OUR PETS BE PART OF THE CEREMONY?
Yes. We recognize that each couple is unique and has their own concerns, requests and wishes. Our chaplains are happy to work with you to write a ceremony that makes you happy and expresses your individuality.
9. WILL WE NEED A REHEARSAL AND HOW MUCH DOES IT COST?
If you are planning a more formal wedding with bridesmaids, groomsmen, etc. a rehearsal is recommended. Often, the attendants are more nervous than the bride and groom – they want to understand their role and they don’t want to let you down! Cost of a rehearsal is an additional $50.