FAQs

I am a non-denominational minister ordained in 1992 by the Sufi Order International. My work as a chaplain in healthcare started at Alta Bates Summit Medical Center in Berkeley, California, in 1997 and continued at the Community Hospital of the Monterey Peninsula, in Monterey, California. In 2002 I received my board certification from the Association of Professional Chaplains.

What is the difference between a Pastor and a Chaplain?
A chaplain's role is to provide care of the human spirit on a person’s own terms; not to persuade, argue or endorse their own beliefs. Board certified chaplains serve as trusted counselors to all people regardless of religion or beliefs.
A pastor is an ordained minister of a religion whose mission is accountability to their community of faith and the tenants of their religion.

Yes, I will help you craft a moving ceremony which includes meaningful portions of your own heritage, your spouse’s tradition and your own personal declaration of love. A special sensitivity is needed because a successful marriage involves not just the merging of two people’s lives into one, but also the joining of their respective families. I have a skillful touch that communicates true respect for diverse religious and cultural beliefs.

Your ceremony need not include a lot or any religious terminology to convey your sacred intention and commitment in spiritual terms.
Together we will create a joyous and meaningful celebration that honors this pivotal rite of passage in your lives.

Yes, I am a facilitator of the “Prepare/Enrich” Program developed by Life Innovations. This program is used by more than 2 million couples nationally. It provides an on-line assessment tool which helps identify the strengths and growth areas in your relationship. It also teaches valuable communication and conflict resolution skills which helps couples become aware of important issues before they turn into major problems. Counseling provides support and preparation for this most complex of human relationships, intended to last for a lifetime. It is a wise choice! I suggest counseling be completed 6 weeks prior to your wedding date.

This depend on your wishes, but is generally 20 minutes or longer.

It is best to book your ceremony as soon as you know your wedding date and time.

The wedding officiant fee depends on several variables such as the number of consultations, the complexity of the ceremony, the rehearsal and the travel involved. After our first meeting, we will determine the fee. There is no charge for the initial consultation.

Yes, I would be happy to officiate at a ceremony for people who are in a loving, committed relationship, regardless of their sexual orientation.

Typically I wear a black suit and white shirt. If you wish, I can add a stole.

Yes, depending on my other commitments, the distance and the need for rehearsal.

Reviews

We were so happy with how you co-officiated at our daughter's interfaith wedding. You took out the stress and infused just the right amount of fun, joy and depth into this momentous rite of passage for our entire family. You listened without judgment! We really appreciated your ability to bring a traditional…  read more

Meryl Bryant

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