Thursday, March 26, 2009

Regarding Robes and Riches

Most conversations these days soon turn to money, and couples planning weddings hear all kinds of talk. Perhaps the most difficult entity to evaluate in terms of fairness of fees is the officiant. Other goods and services are far easier to evaluate. However, the person actually performing the ceremony is not so easy to pin down.

As an officiant, I hold the personal view that one should not look at couples being married as merely an income stream. Even the most sophisticated of bride or groom is vulnerable to the whims of the celebrant conducting the ceremony. I am not suggesting that the service be considered a charitable donation, or a love offering. However, I do hold that even the couple in very modest circumstances deserves an articulately crafted and presented service, that respects their particular beliefs and cultures, and resonates with their preferences. A cookie cutter, one-size-fits-all, fill-in-the-blanks wedding ceremony is unacceptable -- especially if it comes with a price tag in the hundreds of dollars (or more).

When asked why my rates are low, I reply that it's a matter of ethics with me. Just because I could charge more does not mean that it is right -- or necessary -- to do so.

No comments:

Post a Comment