Question: What are your gas/travel charges?

Answer: If the wedding venue in Greensboro, I don’t add any gas/travel charges.

If the wedding takes place outside of the immediate Greensboro area, I typically charge $0.55/mile.  This is the current gas/travel allowance allowed by the IRS and generally covers my gas/car maintenance expenses I incur.

I consider this to be a nominal charge for gas/travel.  Here’s why: I don’t actually cover the time it takes for me to travel to and from the wedding venue.  For example, a wedding in Winston-Salem will take me 45 minutes of travel one way.  That’s 90 minutes for a round trip.  If … Read More

Question: How long does the typical ceremony last?

Answer:  It depends!  Let me explain.

Most of my ceremonies are between 20-25 minutes.  The length of a service depends on how long the procession and recession are, how many readings (if any) are included in the service, whether you include a tradition such as a unity candle ceremony, and how organized the ceremony is (see my Q&A on rehearsals and wedding directors).

Most of my couples want short, sweet ceremonies, and I do all that I can to accommodate.

I was once asked, “What is the shortest ceremony you’ve ever officiated?”  I thought for a moment and then said, … Read More

Question: Should we write our own vows?

Answer:  Vows are the essence—the heart and soul—of every wedding ceremony. They are the expression of your promises and commitments to each other and to society—the fundamental purpose of the ceremony.

It is impossible to overstate the importance of the wedding vows. You should view these promises as the core of your marriage. In times of difficulty, returning to your vows will enable you to renew your faith in each other and in your marriage. Use these promises as the source of strength that allows you to work through difficult times.

One choice you face is whether to say the … Read More

Question: Do we need a rehearsal? A wedding director?

Answer:  This is a question I will discuss with you when we meet face-to-face.  The answer depends on several factors, such as the size of the wedding, the number in your wedding party, and the complexity of the ceremony itself.

First, if your wedding is small with few attendants and does not include any traditions and customs, then you probably can get by without a designated director or day coordinator.  If, for example, the wedding is going to be held in the back yard with no formal procession/recession with only a best man/maid of honor, then you will probably … Read More

Do you require and do we need pre-marital counseling?

Answer:  Great question!  I highly recommend that all engaged couples participate in pre-marital counseling.  I don’t, however, with some exceptions, require it.

Here’s one reason why I recommend pre-marital counseling: You can never know enough about you and the person you are marrying! 

There are two parts to that thought.  Let me explain…

First, you need to know as much about yourself as you possibly can.  You may think you already know all there is to know about you, your personality, likes/dislikes, preferences, and idiosyncrasies.  After all, you have lived with yourself for quite some time! But if you’re … Read More

Question: A religious or non-religious ceremony?

Answer: There’s so much pre-wedding work to do that it’s easy to make the mistake of leaving the ceremony until the last minute. This would be a shame, because the ceremony is the centerpiece of the celebration. The words spoken by you and your fiancé and by me as your wedding officiant are the words that send you into the world as a married couple. They should be well chosen, with your own tastes and personalities in mind.

One of the choices you face in crafting your wedding ceremony is how religious to make the ceremony.  While I studied and … Read More