Will you marry us?

What its takes to have a friend of fam­ily member of­fi­ci­ate your “I do”s.

The Coast - Halifax Weddings Guide - - Essentials - BY MOR­GAN MULLIN

You and your spe­cial some­one are get­ting hitched, but you never dreamed of a three-tier wedding cake—much less some re­li­gious fig­ure bless­ing your union.

Ob­vi­ous isn’t you, and all your favourite sit­coms fea­ture a scene with loved ones pre­sid­ing over vows, mean­ing you’d adore a spe­cial some­one green-light­ing your first legally mar­ried smooch.

And while it’s a great idea, it isn’t as easy as the magic of TV makes it ap­pear.

If you re­ally want it to be your best bud’s le­gal bless­ing, they’ll need cer­ti­fi­ca­tion. And no, that in­fa­mous web­site promis­ing you can “get or- dained on­line in five min­utes or less” is not le­gal in Canada. (But re­ally, five min­utes? Do you want a wedding or a Lean Cui­sine?)

A full-fledged reg­is­tra­tion of clergy, ac­cord­ing to the Nova Sco­tia per­mit direc­tory, re­quires a res­i­dent to “be in good stand­ing in some ‘es­tab­lished re­li­gious body’” or have 25 con­sent­ing adults sign a pe­ti­tion vouch­ing for the ap­pli­cant’s re­li­gious role.

If your friend doesn’t have time to start a cult be­fore your wedding, they can sub­mit to the De­part­ment of Justice and be­come a reg­is­tered Justice of the Peace—so long as they pass the re­quired train­ing course. (Although, to make things a bit more com­pli­cated, the of­fice is cur­rently so flooded with ap­pli­ca­tions they aren’t tak­ing any new in­quires un­til fur­ther no­tice.)

An­other op­tion that’ll in­duce fewer grey hairs? An of­fi­ciant mid­dle man, like All Sea­sons Wed­dings Cer­e­monies can have “one of [their] li­censed officiants on site then later they reg­is­ter your wedding with the Gov­ern­ment”—mean­ing their pres­ence makes it of­fi­cial, but your friend still gets to run the show.

But, if your friend doesn’t plan on pre­sid­ing over fu­ture wed­dings, of­fi­ci­at­ing in any ca­pac­ity could be a lot to ask of them. An eas­ier op­tion for all? Em­ploy their great read­ing voice to share a beloved verse.


If you want your BFF to pre­side over your vows, you bet­ter get plan­ning now.

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