Codi
Beginner May 2021

Freaking Out About Officiant, please help!

Codi, on April 21, 2021 at 6:06 PM Posted in Planning 0 24
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Hello Everyone, I've never posted on wedding wire before but I need to vent/ get others takes on my situation. Apologies in advance for the length - but please help! I'll have to give a lot of context. So my fiancé and I were supposed to be married last year in December with a 60 person guest list. With the pandemic and a serious family illness for my FIL we decided to postpone for everyone's safety and to try and avoid sudden closures. Well the venue refused to work with us and I lost out on $1,500 because of it. Cut to 2021, my fiancé and I decided that we did not want to wait. We are now getting (Micro) married on May 10th with 9 of our closest family members and I am so very happy we decided to. I found a wedding planner that had a great package and price where everything is taken care of - flowers, officiant, ceremony decorations, photo/video, etc. And she has been amazing so far - plus she is giving my fiancé and I a surprise wedding cake free of charge with a free of charge cake table for the day as a thank you and gesture for what we lost out on with the first venue. It brought tears to my eyes. So everything has been perfect... up till now. The officiant has been very nice on the phone and worked with us on vows and allowed me to edit the entire ceremony to read how I would like. He even commented that he enjoyed my edits to the speech and vows. However, he has been pretty unpredictable with communication. I was supposed to have my final ceremony script a week and half ago. I just got it today (after emailing him four days ago) only to find that he basically left out my edits and it sounds nearly like it did before I fixed everything. I am so confused. This has been the third issue with him, the biggest one. And I am just frustrated. He is supposed to be providing typed up vow cards for me and my fiancé but he doesn't seem dependable. And the biggest issue by far is that come to find out, he is my planners boyfriend. Yea, so I feel really weird about complaining to my lovely wedding planner since she is dating him (I found out through googling my officiant and social media). He also doesn't have officiant on any of his work portfolios, he's a realtor. So I feel like he just does this as a side hustle. I am just really annoyed and upset that he has been so unreliable and dropped the ball so horribly when the day is so close. And even more stressed that I can't say anything to my planner with the conflict of interest and all the nice things she has done for me when she didn't have to. What do I do or how do I handle this problem?

24 Comments

Latest activity by Beth, on April 22, 2021 at 11:58 PM
  • Hannah
    Master July 2019
    Hannah ·
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    Your planner is a professional. I would try to bring it up in a non-confrontational way and say, "hey, everything has been fantastic. However, I've been a little stressed out about the ceremony process. The officiant has overall been great to work with, but recently we've had some communication issues."
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  • Grace
    Rockstar February 2022
    Grace ·
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    Agree with Hannah. Your wedding planner should still be told, regardless of her relationship with him. I'm not telling you to badmouth him, but definitely say you are stressed by the miscommunication, at the least.
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  • Codi
    Beginner May 2021
    Codi ·
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    Thank you for your reply - I'll definitely mention it to her. It just seems so strange that he would somehow rewrite what I fixed when he praised my changes during a zoom meeting.

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  • Codi
    Beginner May 2021
    Codi ·
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    Thanks for replying - I'll definitely do what you and Hanna advised. As I said, I don't know what to make of him changing stuff on me when he told me in a zoom meeting that he liked what I'd done. Especially when this was supposed to be the crisp, finalized version too.

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  • Dj Tanner
    June 2021
    Dj Tanner ·
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    That’s so unacceptable of your planner to do. Regardless of how sweet she was to you that’s her job! By not working with a professional officiant she is cheating you out of money so the cake doesn’t really make a difference at this point. And it’s not like you asked for free cake. You asked for an officiant that knew what he was doing.
    She didn’t provide that but lied to you and said she is providing that. I would be VERY upfront with her and find a new officiant. This is your wedding day and she is your wedding planner. She’s not a friend. Just because she was nice to you doesn’t mean that you should feel nervous to call her out on nonsense. You’re paying for this!
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  • A
    Devoted June 2021
    Allie ·
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    Could you perhaps request a conference call/Zoom call with the planner and the officiant (and of course your FS too) to finalize the ceremony wording together? Like I'm thinking you could ask him to share his screen, suggest the edits, and watch as he types them into the document (or if he has a different suggestion, in which case everyone talks it out)? And then everyone can decide on concrete next steps and deadlines for those next steps. By having the planner there too, hopefully you'll avoid the communication difficulties. In order to soften the messaging a bit when you suggest the meeting, you could always say something like "Hi [planner] and [officiant]! As we are 2.5 weeks out, [FS] and I would really, really like to finalize the ceremony wording and our vows. [FS] and I find that video calls are easier than emails back and forth to make sure we're all on the same page. Can we all jump on a quick Zoom call tomorrow evening or Friday to make the final edits to the ceremony document together? That would go a long, long way in getting [FS] and I ready for our big day, and we are so excited to continue working with you! Thank you in advance for making a little bit of time in your busy schedules to finalize this important part of our wedding! I will send a Zoom invite. Would tomorrow or Friday be more convenient for you guys?" I think you have to force the issue here because it's cool that this is his side hustle and all, but he NEEDS to meet client needs, especially 2.5 weeks out. Best of luck!!!

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  • Celina
    Dedicated October 2021
    Celina ·
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    I would take the emotion out of it and just have an honest conversation. As far as she knows, she doesn’t know that you know they are together right? IMO I don’t think she should have had her BF be the officiant. Your paying for a service and you are not getting what you want/wanted so you just need to address it as if you knew nothin of the relationship.
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  • Codi
    Beginner May 2021
    Codi ·
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    The unfortunate thing is, I’ve had two zoom video calls with him while setting up the ceremony. So I’ve watched him writing and typing notes as we went over my exact edits that have now disappeared. That’s what is so strange. He spoke to me about what I wrote basically face to face, so on video, and now they’re no longer there in the final draft. So I don’t know what to think of the sudden big mistake. I have my final planning meeting with my wedding planner on Monday and I will talk to her about this. Thank you for replying!
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  • Codi
    Beginner May 2021
    Codi ·
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    Yea, I’m gonna have to say something. If only a little section had been left out, I would think it was an honest mistake and he was just busy or rushed. But the way we went over everything already, we spoke first hand about what I had edited, and then in the final draft, it’s suddenly changed so much, it’s thrown me for such a loop when it should have been super easy. Everything up to this point has been so simple and right on track. I guess everyone had some sort of problem during planning, just wish it wasn’t at 2 1/2 weeks out lol
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  • Codi
    Beginner May 2021
    Codi ·
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    Yea, my whole viewpoint has shifted a bit with this happening. I’ll be anxious to see what kind of reply I get from him and what my planner tells me as well. It’s left such a sour taste in my mouth when I was so thankful and also getting my tip calculations sorted out too. Thank you for your reply!
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  • Hannah
    Master July 2019
    Hannah ·
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    Did you let him know the issue? I'm wondering if maybe he just sent you the wrong document. I've definitely attached the wrong draft of a paper before when sending it out! Lol.
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  • Codi
    Beginner May 2021
    Codi ·
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    Lol I thought that at first too! And really hoped that was the case. I’ve done the same thing so no harm no foul if he had done that. But I know for sure he didn’t because there was one main edit in the final about my parents giving me away that was correct. And we talked about it at the previous meeting I had with him. But the other parts of the ceremony were put down almost opposite of what I discussed with him. So half was what I had edited or wanted, the other half was backwards or completely different. Really weird. I did email back right away and explain, very respectfully, that some things weren’t quite right. I even made a new document with exactly what he needs from start to finish, and marked the parts he had wrong. 🤷🏼‍♀️
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  • E
    Super July 2023
    Eniale ·
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    Have the conversation. She is a professional. My husband and I used to work together as videographers, and I would absolutely have expected a couple to be willing to tell him (as he was the head of the company) if they felt my behavior was unprofessional.

    Also, moving forward, don't edit an officiant's ceremony. Most officiants won't even allow you to do this. This is their job, even if they only do it on the side. You hire people for their expertise. An officiant isn't just someone who recites words you provide off a piece of paper - if you want that, have a friend get ordained and hand them a script. If you don't like the ceremony an officiant provides, you should find someone whose ceremony you do like, not try to "fix" theirs. You can provide input on specific readings and things you may want, but you should never go editing it.

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  • Kari
    Master May 2020
    Kari ·
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    Agree with this.

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  • Katie
    VIP August 2021
    Katie ·
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    Unfortunately there always seems to be an issue with packages like this. There's always a reason they are an unbelievable price or why you are getting something for nothing. I'd definitely bring it up to her. See how she handles it. If she can't hold her professionalism and take care of the situation then I'd drop them both.
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  • Katie
    VIP August 2021
    Katie ·
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    Absolutely agree
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  • Codi
    Beginner May 2021
    Codi ·
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    I wouldn’t have edited anything if he didn’t give me the okay. He not only told me to change things up and move things around as I’d like, he encouraged it. He gave me options on purpose for what I wanted as well, so I could literally pick and choose what I wanted and what I didn’t want. This is a direct quote from one of the emails: “feel free to mix and match by section, edit, remove items, replace verbiage, or add elements that you are inspired by.” So the issue isn’t stemming from me overstepping my bounds or asking him to do more than he was supposed to or agreed upon.
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  • Michelle
    Rockstar October 2022
    Michelle ·
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    Sit down with fiancé and both vendors to get on the same page and let them know of the glaring error. If they refuse to resolve it, look into getting married at the courthouse.

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  • Katie
    VIP August 2021
    Katie ·
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    I never heard of not getting to make changes to the officiants ceremony. We have an ordained minister marring us and he gave us a copy of the ceremony and told us not to be afraid to make any changes to it because it's our wedding not his.
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  • Codi
    Beginner May 2021
    Codi ·
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    Same, I actually thought it was part of being an officiant, no matter what type of officiant. I’ve heard of multiple edits or completely custom ceremonies and vows costing extra, but you’d have to go through a ton of vendors to get a ceremony that’s just right if you couldn’t edit things. Plus, it’s like saying he can make up words about you and your fiancé, but you can’t do the same. Like, what?
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