Your Knot, Your Way
Tie, retie or tighten your commitment to each other!
Want to get married? I can help!
Often when people fall in love they want to get married and “tie” the knot. Some want to publicly announce their commitment to each other. Traditionally, lovers had been married in churches, as it was considered a holy sacrament.
There are many reasons why people choose to get married by a Marriage Commissioner versus a member of the clergy — such as a couple having different faiths, the absence of faith, being spiritual but not religious, unfavourable experiences with the church, not believing in the church, not being able to get married in the church due to sexual orientation (FYI, same-sex marriage was legalized in Canada in 2005), not having enough time to plan ahead, etc. Sometimes people want to elope and don’t want a big fuss. Others can’t afford a big wedding ceremony and reception.
There are also those who are already committed to each other and want to renew their commitment and/or wedding vows. Perhaps they want to “retie” the knot or “tighten it.” After a certain number of years, sometimes it is nice to celebrate an anniversary by having a Marriage Commissioner help you renew your vows in front of a small (or large!) gathering of family and friends.
How Much it Costs to Get Married
In Manitoba, to get married, you need a marriage license which costs $100. Find your license at any of these License Issuers, including some jewelry stores, golf clubs, and flower shops. The marriage license has to be obtained at least 24-hours before the wedding and it is valid for three months. The Marriage Commissioner services vary in price, from $75 to $450 depending on what is required (including time commitment, traveling distance and other requirements as expressed by the happy couple). Then you will want to apply to have a copy of the Marriage Certificate mailed to you, which is $30.
Becoming a Marriage Commissioner
The Marriage Commissioner (MC) or Wedding Officiant (WO) is appointed the responsibility of ensuring the required wedding vows are said and properly witnessed. To become an MC, also know as a wedding officiant, in Manitoba you must fill out the application form. To be eligible, you must be 18 years of age or older and legally entitled to work in Canada. This appointment is good for five years, and it costs $100.
The Role of the Marriage Commissioner
The MC is responsible for completing and filing your marriage registration document. He or she will also mail in your completed marriage license. Also, it is a time commitment on the MCs part to meet with you, talk with you on the phone/email/text and be there for the ceremony.
Listings of Marriage Commissioners in Manitoba:
I’ve been happily married since 1990. I know the value and importance of marriage and commitment. If you are interested in my non-denominational, open to all belief systems services, please contact me using the form below.
Angela G. Gentile
Angela G. Gentile MSW, RSW is a clinical social worker and author. She is married, has two adult children, and lives in Winnipeg. For more information, visit: www.AngelaGGentile.com