Below are some smart questions to ask when interviewing a wedding officiant.
• How many weddings have you performed?
• Are you available on my wedding date?
• Do you require any pre-marital counseling or religious class?
• Do you have a written agreement or contract?
• Will you provide us with the wording of our ceremony?
• Will you provide some light-hearted humor if we want it?
• How long does your average ceremony last?
• Can you recommend other wedding vendors?
• What is your wedding officiant attire?
• Can you give us a list of referrals?
• Would you allow another officiant to take part in the ceremony?
• What are your credentials? Are you ordained? What is your spiritual philosophy?
• Do you offer a free introductory meeting where we can get to know each other and discuss our plans?
• Have you ever been late or missed a wedding? What happens if you get sick (e.g, back-up plan)?
• What is your fee, and what does your fee include? Will there be extra charges e.g. for travel or the rehearsal? What is your deposit and cancellation policy?
• How much interaction can we expect leading up to the wedding? Are you available for questions?
• Can we personalize the ceremony by writing our own vows and/or selecting specific readings?
• Can you do personalized rituals within the ceremony, e.g, Hand Blessing, Rose Ceremony, Unity Candle, or Sand (uniting of your two families) Ceremony?
• Will you give a talk (or teaching) during the ceremony? If so, can we have some input?
• Will you be responsible for mailing the license to the state after the ceremony?
• Would you like to join us at the reception?

Here are a few important questions to ask yourselves:
• Do we feel comfortable in the presence of this officiant? Does he or she seem flexible?
• Does he or she seem genuinely interested in us as a couple, and honor our spiritual beliefs?
• Do we intuitively feel we can entrust ourselves to this person for this important and tender part of our wedding?

Here are the same questions with Rev. Katherine’s answers:
• How many weddings have you performed? Around 65, as of fall 2012.
• Are you available on my wedding date? Let’s find out.
• Do you require any pre-marital counseling or religious class? No. As a spiritual teacher, I have resources for helping you build and maintain a relationship based on trust and solid communication skills IF YOU DESIRE THEM. As my spiritual teacher used to say, “Communication doesn’t solve all your problems, just 99% of them. I offer counseling if you want it.
• Do you have a written agreement or contract? Yes – it clarifies both of our responsibilities.
• Will you provide us with the wording of our ceremony? Yes, when we agree to work together and I receive your deposit, I will send you an entire ceremony, and you can choose from many options.
• Will you provide some light-hearted humor if we want it? Absolutely! Let’s have fun. I love to keep it light.
• How long does your average ceremony last? Anywhere from 20 minutes to 45 minutes, depending on optional readings and rituals, which add balance and a nice flow to the ceremony.
• Can you recommend other wedding vendors? Yes, see my page for wedding resources, venues, and vendors: www.richerliving.org/weddingceremonies/wedding-resources
• What is your wedding officiant attire? I usually wear a black ministerial robe (see photos on my website), and I can also wear a neutral-colored suit jacket and skirt. It’s your choice.
• Can you give us a list of referrals? Yes, I have many referrals as well as Yelp reviews: http://www.yelp.com/biz/wedding-ceremonies-by-rev-katherine-mill-valley
• Would you allow another officiant to take part in the ceremony? Sure – let’s be inclusive!
• What are your credentials? Are you ordained? What is your spiritual philosophy? I am an ordained minister through Centers for Spiritual Living. The teaching embraces the wisdom truths that are common among most religious traditions. Visit the website at http://www.csl.org/
• Do you offer a free introductory meeting where we can get to know each other and discuss our plans? Yes, it’s free because I want you to feel confident and comfortable with whoever you choose for your officiant.
• Have you ever been late or missed a wedding? No. What happens if you get sick (e.g, back-up plan)? When I’m asked this, I say, “What happens if YOU get sick? Will you still show up? Well, I will too.” And yes, I have back up officiants and a good supply of DayQuil.
• What is your fee, and what does your fee include? My fee depends on where the wedding will be and whether or not we do a rehearsal. When I give you a price, there will be no hidden or extra charges. What is your deposit and cancellation policy? When you decide to work with me, you pay 50% as a non-refundable deposit. The balance is due one month prior to the wedding. If you cancel within 3 months of the wedding date, you do not have to make the final payment.
• How much interaction can we expect leading up to the wedding? I will send you the ceremony with options, and then you send it back with your thoughts, ideas, and possibly some personal vows. We might go back and forth on the phone a few times as I craft the ceremony. I want you to be really happy with it. Are you available for questions and last minute changes? Yes.
• Can we personalize the ceremony by writing our own vows and/or selecting specific readings? Yes, you are publicly pledging your love and commitment to each other, and I want your ceremony to reflect your personal style.
• Can you do personalized rituals within the ceremony, e.g. Hand Blessing, Rose Ceremony, Unity Candle, or Sand (uniting of your two families) Ceremony? Yes, I have lots of personalized rituals, and am happy to include others that resonate with you.
• Will you give a talk (or teaching) during the ceremony? Yes, it’s pretty short and not at all preachy. It addresses the meaning of marriage. If so, can we have some input? Yes.
• Will you be responsible for mailing the license to the state after the ceremony? Yes, if you bring the necessary forms to the wedding for your authorized certified copy. Here’s a downloadable PDF with information about marriage licenses: Marriage License Information
• Would you like to join us at the reception? I like to stay for a short while and greet the guests and connect with your parents and families, but I don’t stay for the meal, so no need to order a meal for me.

Downloadable PDF of the information on this page: Questions-Answers