Destination Wedding Ordained Minister

November 12, 2020

Destination Wedding Ordained Minister

Hey readers! Brittany here! Since officiating my first wedding at Big Sur, California, I’ve been getting quite a few questions on why I became ordained and it’s simple… wedding planning runs deep to my core and I am the happiest when I work with fearless experience seeking couples. Becoming ordained was the easiest decision I’ve ever made! ⁣It meant I could immerse myself even more into my couple’s love story. Not only could I plan their perfect day, I could witness such an intimate moment front and center as their Ordained Minister.

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Becoming Ordained Through Universal Life Church

Here are some of the frequently asked question I’ve received after I became an Ordained Minister.

Was it easy to become an Ordained Minister? Let me answer it like this… it is what you put into it. Universal Life Church has a TON of resources for your journey. You could go one route and just enter your information to become Ordained Instantly OR you could go through their Officiant Training Center and learn the ins and outs to officiating a wedding. I personally enjoyed reading about becoming ordained and the duties that come along with such a serious job.

How do I know if my certificate will work in my state? Before you can preform a ceremony, you need to call your county clerks office and make sure your certificate is legal in the county the couple received the marriage license.

What makes a wedding legal? According to the Universal Life Church, “a legal marriage ceremony has only two required elements. The first is the Declaration of Intent, otherwise known as the “Do you take…” and “I do” exchange. The second is the Pronouncement, where the minister pronounces the couple as officially married. As long the ceremony includes those basic elements, it will be considered legally binding.”

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Destination Wedding Ordained Minister Sample Script

As I mentioned above, there are only two key pieces to legalize a wedding… the Declaration of Intent and the Pronouncement. Besides these two things, you can make the wedding script your own! But for those of you who need a template to go off of ( just like me!) here is a link to some great  templates from the Universal Life Church. As an extra bonus, I’ve included a REAL script written for Brian and Jessica’s destination Big Sur elopement wedding! 

Welcome Statement

*The bride’s parent walk the bride down the aisle to meet the groom and Minister at the altar. 

Minister: We meet here today to witness a sacred ceremony – the union of Brian and Jessica. We come together to celebrate the love and devotion shared by these two children of God that stand before us.

Family Blessing

Minister: Who gives this Bride today?

Father + Mother of the bride: We do.


Wedding Sermon

*The wedding sermon is the part in the ceremony where you can truly customize what you have to say. Take some time to get to know the couple and make it extra special. I personally do not like when the sermon is very general. It feels a bit disconnected. Tie things together and add in some personal touches about the couple. 

On this day, we’ve come together not to mark the start of a relationship, but to recognize the unbreakable bond that already exists. Today is a celebration of love, commitment, and of two people who are in it forever. Jessica and Brian, you have been together for a little over 12 years…that’s almost half of your lifetime and you have supported each other since day one. 

This year has really put into perspective what is most important to us. Today isn’t about the perfect venue, signature cocktails or entertaining a sea of guests. Today is about your union, and your love story. This is the foundation of your forever and the beginning of a whole new chapter that you’ll be taking on together. When you leave today hand in hand, connected as Husband and Wife one thing that you can always rest assured is that you’ll always have each other. 

Brian, Jessica describes you as her biggest cheerleader! Front and center always supporting and loving on her. 

Jessica, Brian shared that you have an unwavering sense of loyalty and that you’ll always stand by his side no matter what comes your way!

It’s important to remember that love is an indescribable feeling but love is also a choice. It’s a choice that we make when times are difficult and when times are exciting and full of adventure! You see… selflessness is one of the greatest attributes of love. And it is ESSENTIAL to every great love story.

This year has taught us that life can throw the craziest of scenarios at us but one thing to always remember is this exact moment. As you hold hands smiling at one another I want you to harness this feeling and why we are here today. So 10, 20.. 50 years from now I want you to be able to close your eyes and feel this overwhelming sense of pure unconditional love. The way you look at each other, the way you speak about one another and the way you laugh together… its clear that your love is one for the ages.  

You fell in love by chance — but you’re here today because you’re making a choice.

Bible Verse 

*If the couple is not religious, you can eliminate a bible verse. For this particular wedding, it was important to the couple and their family to mention the word of God. If you want to personalize this section, ask the couple if they have a Bible verse they love and add it in or you can always ask a family member to read a Bible verse. 

Minister: The Bible makes note of the power of love in Peter 4:8 (Chapter 4 Verse 8)… “Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.”


*Jessica asked to go first, but traditionally we see the husband start off. Make sure you ask the couple if they have a preference. 

Minister: I will now invite you two  to share your vows with one another. Brian and Jessica, the promises you make today are sacred; they are the groundwork for which your marriage will grow and blossom over time. 

Jessica, would you like to begin first?

Jessica: (Bride states their vow…)

Minister: Brian, your turn. 

Brian: (Groom states their vow…)

Minister: Let us proceed.


Declaration of Intent

Minister: Brian and Jessica, it is time to join hands. 

Brian, before your parents and God, do you take Jessica as your beloved Wife, to have and to hold, through laughter and sadness, through challenges and successes, so long as you both shall live?

Brian: I do

Minister: Jessica, before your parents and God, do you take Brian as your beloved Husband, to have and to hold, through laughter and sadness, through challenges and successes, so long as you both shall live?

Jessica: I do

Ring Exchange

Minister: It is now time to exchange the rings. The circle formed by each ring is a symbol of your love and eternal commitment to each other. May these rings remind you always of these sacred promises you’ve made to each other today in the company of your parents.

Minister: Brian, you will go first. Please repeat after me as you place the ring on Jessica.

*Make sure you split this up so it is easy for the couple to repeat after you. To make it easier to read, I added “-” in the script to remind myself to pause. 

With this ring – I marry you – and bind my life to yours – It is a symbol of my eternal love – My everlasting friendship – and the promise of all my tomorrows.

Minister: Jessica, your turn.

With this ring – I marry you – and bind my life to yours – It is a symbol of my eternal love – My everlasting friendship – and the promise of all my tomorrows.


Minister: By the power vested in me, by the state of California and by the Universal Life Church, I pronounce you, Brian and Jessica as Husband and Wife, lawfully wedded before God.


*For photography purposes, we recommend moving to the side so the couple can have their first kiss without you in the background. 

Minister: Brian, you may now kiss the Bride.


Minister: For the first time, I give you Mr. and Mrs. Wu!

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Planner & Designer | Unveiled Bliss | @unveiledbliss

Photographer | Paige Vaughn Photo | @paigevaughnphoto

Florist | Bloomwell & Co | @bloomwellandco

Hair and MUA | Status Salon | @statussalonagency

Invitation Suite | Model Paper | @_modelpaper

Jewelry | Lindsey Leigh Jewelry | @houstondiamondgirl


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