A good celebrant holds the key to communicating your journey to your guests up until this point of 'I do', and sets the tone for the entire wedding day.
It's imperative that you and your partner feel comfortable and confident with the person who will stand before you and announce you 'husband and wife' (and the kissy, kissy bit!). But for most couples, the search for a celebrant is a completely new concept.
Thank goodness the Celebrants Association of New Zealand (CANZ) are here to help us understand the general process. We put five of the most-common thoughts from brides to them for a response:
I need a celebrant. But where do I start?
Either word of mouth so you get a good recommendation or go to the Celebrants Association of New Zealand (CANZ) website.
How many times will I meet with this celebrant before our wedding day. How will s/he know our story?
Normally, once a couple contacts a celebrant, they would then arrange a date and time to meet for an initial chat and for the celebrant to get information about the wedding and also get to know the couple and hear their 'story'. The celebrant would then write up a ceremony and should check back with the couple to ensure they are happy with every word of it.
There may be another meeting, that's entirely up to the couple and the celebrant. They would then meet again at the rehearsal where a final check of times, venues, music, etc should be discussed.
In some cases, for example a couple living overseas, much of the meeting time can be undertaken by Skype and email.
I wonder if our celebrant will help us write our vows?
Yes! Your celebrant can certainly help with the vows if needed; either give the couple some samples to choose from, some ideas on how vows usually go, or just work with the couple as they craft their own.
Should I invite my celebrant to our reception?
The celebrant does not expect to be invited to the reception, however if the celebrant is a family friend you may want them to stay for your evening celebrations.
How much is a celebrant going to cost?
The celebrant fee is set by the celebrant themselves and they do vary between $200 and $750. If the couple are experiencing severe budget constraints then it is worth discussing this with their celebrant.
Like and follow the Celebrants Association of New Zealand on Facebook.