My fiance and I got a marriage license, however, it expired last week.  I realize that it is important to me to be sure to find someone who will not engage in superstitious talk at our wedding ceremony.  I've looked online for local officiants, with each one promoting spirituality in some form.  I don't want to hear words like that on my wedding day!  

My experience with people has been that communication is a difficult thing.  I can interview these people and they may seem to agree, but in the end they will decide what to say, and whether or not to add a quick "God Bless You" or "May the Universe Guide You" in there thinking it won't do any harm.  I have to hear this stuff all the time.  I'd like my wedding day not to have it.  So I'm searching for an officiant who is also an atheist/antitheist.

What has your experience been with atheistic weddings?  I attended two of my fnon-believing friends' weddings last year, who apparently didn't care as much as I do about the officiant, and there were religious words in the ceremony.

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Comment by Concealing MyAnti-Theism on July 20, 2016 at 2:54pm

The Justice of the Peace at the courthouse idea works differently here in Tn/Va than what I have pictured it to be in the past.  Get the license at the courthouse.  Contact one of their approved ministers on file, if you like, or find an ordained minister of your own.  We don't know the mayor of either nearby town; that's not a likelihood.  However, your advice did lead me to search for secular celebrant and I have a couple of possibilities.  Also a friend's son who was married last year to a nice man is looking up the name of their officiant.  I'd rather spend this time looking for the right person than a dress, that's for sure!

Comment by Concealing MyAnti-Theism on July 9, 2016 at 8:37pm

A dog, huh?  Hahahaha.  Awesome!  We have four dogs.  It can be by the Church of the Dogs.  The drawback is that the will want to lick our guests faces and jump up on the tables, or at least beg all the food away from people's plates!

Comment by Loren Miller on July 9, 2016 at 12:08pm

My wife and I were married by the mayor of our home town.  We specified NO MENTION OF ANY GOD in the ceremony, and that stipulation was honored without complaint.

You might also search for a secular celebrant for your wedding as well.  The Center For Inquiry is heavy into that (see hyperlink above) and there are other organizations you can tap into as well.  BEST WISHES!

Comment by Jennifer W on July 9, 2016 at 11:27am

I never experienced an atheist wedding, but I loove going to weddings and wedding ceremonies in general. They are so fun and beautiful. I'd love to have one in the future. I can't say my love of weddings is really rational, though.

My approach would be to ask the local convention centers if you want a big wedding. You don't have to have an official minister, just do whatever the hell you want and then sign the official papers later.

Comment by Michael Penn on July 9, 2016 at 10:43am

I agree with Donald on this one. The idea is foolproof.

Or you can do a similar thing and write it all down, do the private ceremony any way you like, and use a friend's registered pet as the minister. That's right. The validity of the certificate is in whether it is filed or not. You can be just as legally married if the "minister" is a dog. My proof is in records and the fact that many fundies do not have any papers to back up their ministry.

Comment by Concealing MyAnti-Theism on July 9, 2016 at 10:33am


Because the official very likely will say before or after the ceremony one of the ubiquitous sayings prevalent in this area and elsewhere of course: Jesus saves, Look to Him for Guidance, Let the Almighty be Your Counselor, God Bless Your Hearts.  For this reason, I'd like an atheist to perform our ceremony.

Comment by Donald L. Engel on July 8, 2016 at 2:35pm

Conceal, why don't you go the county  courthouse instead of a church?  You should be able to tell the official what you want him to say, or not say.  You could even put it in writing, and have him/her sign it.



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