The Wedding Ceremony

In the big picture of life, I imagine that your wedding will be way up there in the significant occasions that you will experience. Y our relationship is unique, and having a wedding ceremony that is in harmony with you both – your beliefs, ideas and personal style is, therefore, very important.

This is where I can help! Whatever the size or style of your wedding – whether it be a small, intimate & informal . . or a very large, traditional & formal – the words that you will express to each other in the ceremony need to be authentic and appropriate to you both.

We will have an initial meeting together (lasting about an hour) to discuss your thoughts about your wedding and desires for the ceremony. It is important for me to get the ‘feel’ of what you are wanting, to see that we ‘gel’, and that you would like me to be your Celebrant.

I will provide you with plenty of written material to take home, giving you ideas for the wording, and suggestions for readings, music and other parts of the ceremony.

We would communicate by email/phone as you make your decisions. I will then create a ‘draft ceremony’ for you to read over and make any adjustments needed. We go backwards and forwards until you are totally happy and content with the ceremony.

We would meet again several days before the wedding date, to discuss last minute plans and changes, and for me to receive your legal wedding documents. There are occasions when I would recommend a wedding rehearsal. For the smaller, more informal wedding ceremonies, we would adjust above to suit your situation.

Legal Requirements for Marriage in New Zealand

Age limitation –

The minimum legal age for marriage in New Zealand is sixteen years. Those under twenty years, at the time of marriage, will require the formal consent of their parent(s) or guardian(s).

Previously Married –

Those previously married must produce evidence of dissolution of their previous marriage, before a new marriage license can be issued.

Marriage License –

In New Zealand a Marriage License is issued by the Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages. This must be obtained before your wedding. The first stage is to complete the Notice of Intended Marriage form. Visit your nearest office of the Department of Births, Deaths and Marriages, or go to their website www.bdm.govt.nz for comprehensive details. Note that the license is valid for three months after the date of issue.

The Marriage Certificate –

At the end of the ceremony I would issue you with your Marriage Certificate. This document, which is signed by the married couple, two witnesses and myself, is proof of the legality of the marriage.

Place and Time of Marriage Ceremony –

A wedding ceremony can take place anywhere, but must be held at the location stated on the license. If an alternative location is selected (particularly as a contingency for bad weather), this must also be on the license. If you decide to change both the main location as well as the alternative after obtaining your license, the Registrar of Marriages, who issued you the license must be informed. Weddings may take place between 6.00am and 10.00pm.

Decisions ! Decisions !