Ministering to you! Know the facts about Wedding Day ministers in Spain

Friday, 16 October 2015 00:00

Photo credit: Bob Long Photography

Before you made the decision to marry you probably didn’t give much thought to the kind of minister you wanted for your wedding ceremony. Once you have set the date and booked your venue however choosing a minister is a decision which can have a huge impact on your Big Day here in Spain.

 

A CATHOLIC CEREMONY

If you are having a Catholic ceremony then the decision is simplified as you must have a practising Catholic priest. Even here however there is room for maneuver and it is worth knowing your options….

*Use the Catholic priest at the church you have chosen. You need to check if the priest speaks English. If he does then you could use the priest at the church which is usually the cheapest option.

*If the priest at the church you have chosen does not speak English then ask your wedding planner for help finding a translator. The best translators will work alongside you and the priest to create a ceremony with the hymns and Bible readings you have chosen and make sure all is clear before your Wedding Day.

*Bring your own priest! If you, your partner or family know a priest then this can be the option which really adds sparkle to the ceremony as the priest will know you prior to your Wedding Day and be able to work with you to make the ceremony very special. It is usual however to organise (and pay for) flights and accommodation for your priest in this case so is a more expensive option. In addition to this you will need to ensure the priest has a letter of Recommendation from his superior and permission to conduct the service as the local priest at the church will need to see these along with the usual church documentation.

 

A BLESSING CEREMONY

 

If you are having a symbolic blessing ceremony then you have a great deal of scope when it comes to the person who will conduct your ceremony as they do not need to be specially qualified as a minister to perform a blessing. That said it pays to use someone reliable and confident at public speaking to help relax the two of you and make the ceremony more special for your guests.

*A family friend. If you really (yes really really) have a family member or friend who is suitable to perform a blessing then you can use him or her. Do ensure however that they really are happy to do this, have some experience or confidence in this area and are committed to working with you prior to the day and on it. Using “Uncle Jim” may seem like a cheap option at the start, but if he has no experience of performing weddings, may change his mind or has a sudden attack of nerves then it will be far more stressful than using a professional!


*A professional minister. These ministers fall into various categories depending on the types of ceremony they perform. Secular ministers perform ceremonies with no mention of God or spirituality, and the content focuses on your love and commitment to each other. Interfaith Ministers will perform secular ceremonies or those which incorporate elements from one or more faiths (Christian, Jewish etc) along with your own ideas and vows. Christian ministers (eg Church of England or Evangelical pastors) will do Christian ceremonies but will generally be more willing to incorporate readings or songs which Catholic priests will not permit.

The important thing is to talk to your partner and planner and work out what suits you and is possible given your choice of ceremony venue and budget. In this way you can get the best minister for you, regardless of what suits someone else….

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