The concept of the marriage celebrant

 

“Marriages are made in Heaven and solemnized on the Earth.” This is a very old statement. The modern day youth might scoff at this argument. However, if you look in hindsight, this statement is true in more ways than one.

In order to solemnize a marriage, you need a person belonging to clergy. At least, that is what we see in the churches all over the world. Some countries have decided to do away with this clergy part and allow other civilians to solemnize marriages. Australia is the first country in the world to have Government appointed non clergy persons to do so. This is the concept of the marriage celebrant.

The Marriage Act 1961 allows the Australian Government to authorize civilians to perform legal marriages. Of course, he can be a representative of a religious organization. Under such circumstances, he is a religious marriage celebrant. Otherwise, you call such a person as a civil marriage celebrant. It is very important to note here that the authorized marriage celebrants are the only persons permitted to solemnize weddings in Australian.

Who can become a marriage celebrant?

Any person can become a marriage celebrant provided he completes the Certificate IV in Celebrancy awarded by registered training organizations.

How do you become a marriage celebrant?

  • You must complete the Certificate IV in Celebrancy course from a registered institution.
  • Apply to the concerned Government department using the online marriage celebrant application form.
  • You have to clear the interview where you have to answer a series of questions about marriage law and the process of marriage.
  • The Registrar of Marriage Celebrants should certify you as a fit person under Sec 39 of the Marriage Act 1961.

Once appointed by the Government, you have the right to advertise your services and solemnize the weddings. It is an added qualification if you are fluent in the Australian indigenous language.