Picking an Officiant

Hive, do you care how we picked an officiant?  I haven’t seen a lot of posts about officiants online, but we’re talking outside of the US here, so I’ll tell you our story.  And if it’s boring, my feelings won’t be hurt if you skip ahead!

Our wedding package comes with an officiant.  However, all over the BDW website, everyone was talking about a specific pastor that quite a lot of DR bride’s use.  I didn’t really think too much of it, and figured that I’d save the cash for something else.  (You see where this is going, right?)

After I booked my photographer, he suggested that I book the pastor everyone was talking about.  He said the pastor does a really wonderful job with ceremonies, and that the resorts use a Spanish speaking officiant and then the wedding coordinator translates everything into English.

Hmm.  Sounds kind of confusing to me.  Mr. BC speaks some Spanish, but I don’t speak or understand any.  Besides, you know, the basics… “hola”, “gracias”, etc.  (Ugh, I am such a gringo.  Dad, I really am sorry that I didn’t take Spanish in high school.  You were right.   *sigh*)

So, with the recommendation of the BDW forums, AND my photographer, I emailed the pastor to see if he was available on our date.  And he was!!

The process for booking him was not very “official”.  It was actually kind of challenging getting a hold of this guy.  I think he only operates by word of mouth.  He has no website or phone number, just an email address that changes somewhat regularly.  It took me three tries (with failed delivery messages) before I tracked him down.

This was kind of scary! But he literally is the ONLY English speaking officiant in all of the Dominican Republic, and I haven’t seen one negative review of him, only raves.

He emailed me back and said he was available for our date.  He also sent me the ceremony options, and quoted his fee.  Everything looked good, so we confirmed him for our date!  Via email… with no contract or deposit.  Payment is due on the day of.

I am feeling pretty laid back, and relaxed about this email form of confirmation.   (Alright, alright, I was super stressed and anxious for a couple of months, but I am letting it go.  I cannot control whether people live up to their end of the bargain, right?)  Everyone on BDW has confirmed that this is his process, and I haven’t heard of one wedding ceremony that he’s no showed for. I am going to email him a month in advance just to confirm our date.

If, for whatever reason, something falls through, I am going to print the ceremony (and download it onto something… ipad/iphone) and just hand it off to someone to perform.  I am zen.  I am the water.  Ohhhhhmmmmm….  (Yes, I have been doing a lot of yoga lately! Why do you ask?)

We COULD ask one of our guests to perform the ceremony, but I really don’t want anyone to have to work.  I want them to get to see and enjoy our marriage to each other.  Plus, um, with such a small guest list, the options for officiants are kind of slim.

All in all, I think this route was the best for us and I’m feeling confident everything will work out.

So, who’s marrying us, you may be asking yourself?

Pastor Rick York:

Pastor YorkImage via BestDestinationWedding / Photo by Caribbean Emotions

How the heck do most destination wedding brides pick their officiant?  Would you be worried to confirm a vendor via email with no contract or deposit?  Am I crazy?  (Hmm. Don’t answer that!)  Who is performing your wedding ceremony?



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