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Frequently Asked Questions

The most commonly asked questions, answered!

How much does your services cost?

Several complete wedding/renewal ceremonies are offer, starting at $80. We can also customize a ceremony just for you. A non-refundable deposit is needed to reserve a date

Where can we get a marriage license?

You can get your marriage license from the Office of the Clerk of Circuit Court in your city or county (it’s good for 60 days).

What if I need to cancel, after booking and securing my date with payment?

All fees paid to secure your wedding date are non-refundable, however fees paid may be used toward a reschedule date for up to 90 days with a paid $50 change fee.

Why are all deposit fees non-refundable?

All fees paid are non-refundable because once your date is secure for a certain date and time, we turn every other couple away that request an officiate for your time slot.

May we write our own wedding vows?

Absolutely! The vows that you say may be your own words or you may use any or all of the completed ceremonies that we will provide.

Are you available to meet with us before the ceremony?

Yes, you may always contact us to set up a meeting. We will help you plan your wedding service for an additional cost. A "full" consultation meeting is included with the Classic Custom Ceremony.

Will you attend the wedding rehearsal?

Yes, The fee to add a rehearsal is $100. A mileage fee is needed for all mileage outside of the Roanoke – Lynchburg Area to conduct your rehearsal.

Our wedding will be out of town. Will you perform our ceremony?

Yes, but for ceremonies outside of the Roanoke – Lynchburg Area, a mileage reimbursement, plus lodging and meals if an overnight stay is required.

What kind of wedding ceremonies do you perform?

Ceremonies range from where the main focus is the love that is shared between the couple. To ceremonies that are acceptable to Protestants, Catholics and Christians as well as non-denominational ceremonies.

What other kinds of ceremonies do you perform?

Home Blessings, Baby Dedications, Renewal of Vows and public nuptials for couples that have already been privately married. And yes, the couple is accommodate by not revealing that they were already privately married!

Are you an Ordained Minister?

Yes, and authorized to perform marriages by the Orange County Clerk of the Circuit Court. Authorizations is valid for marriage ceremonies performed under a Virginia Marriage License anywhere in the Commonwealth of Virginia. The Virginia law regarding authorizing ministers to perform marriage ceremonies is in the Code of Virginia §20-23.

How much advance notice do you need in order to book a wedding?

If available, your wedding can be perform the same day you call, so little notice is needed. However, availability changes very frequently as couples book new weddings. Most couples book their ceremonies anywhere from 3 to 6 months in advance while others do it only a week or two before the wedding. We try to be flexible in accommodating you.

How long is the ceremony?

Once your ceremony is created or customized, we will be able to give you a good idea of what to expect in terms of time, however, usually a ceremony lasts between 15-30 minutes.

What do you wear?

For many weddings, a suit or a robe.

Do I have to have witnesses?

No, a witness is not required in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

Are there any other additional charges?

The only extra charge you might incur is if your ceremony does not start on time. We offer a (5) five minute grace period and then charge for each 15-minute increment of time that your ceremony is delayed ($25 for each 15 minutes or portion thereof). Also a fee for extenuating circumstances that might occur to reach your ceremony site. These relate to circumstances where the officiant may be required to hike a mountain trail, ski lift or shuttle to your mountain location, or if there is an entrance fee to access your ceremony site (such as at a national or state park), or any parking charges that are required to get to your rehearsal or ceremony site..

Is the classic custom ceremony totally customizable?

Yes. Planning Your Wedding Ceremony would start with the Dove Wedding Ceremony Planning Booklet. The following is the introduction in the planning book. Planning your wedding ceremony is a happy task! It is also a task to be approached thoughtfully, for it is a ceremony in which you seek to express your deepest convictions about your relationship and about the marriage you intend to build together. There are many and varied words to choose from in this booklet. You may also include materials and symbols which have personal meaning for you, perhaps from a different religious tradition. You may want to include children or friends or family members as participants in the ceremony. Your meeting with the Dove Wedding Officiant has two main purposes. The first is for you to tell the officiant about your present relationship and your vision and goals for your marriage. The second purpose is to help you make specific plans for the wedding ceremony. This booklet is designed to help you do that, so please study it carefully in advance. There are several choices for each part of the service. You may change, combine, or add to these choices as you plan your ceremony.

How is the classic basic ceremony different than classic custom ceremony?

Classic Custom Ceremony, this ceremony has an involved process were we would start with choosing the ceremony elements from the Dove Wedding Ceremony Book. After the elements have been chosen we would rewrite the ceremony to gain your vision of the Wedding Ceremony. The Classic Basic Ceremony, this ceremony is prewritten with the ability to make some changes for your ceremony.

What forms of payment do you accept?

Major credit cards are accepted. Paying by credit card through our website (please see the payment information page for details) or having your payment processed over the phone, ensures that you will be placed on our calendar right away. You may also pay in cash but remember that your date is not guaranteed until your payment is received.

Do you stay for the reception?

No, we do not stay for the reception. The reception is an intimate time for friends and family to enjoy the newlyweds

How do I reserve your services?

To check our availability submit the Inquire form for your date or ask a question, or you may submit ceremony reservation booking form. You may also pay your selected ceremony fees directly on our website..

I am currently out of state or too far to meet with you before the wedding. Can I still book your services?

Yes, you may always book our services no matter where you are if we have the date available. If you decide to book the Classic Custom Ceremony and we cannot meet in person, an officiant will do a full consultation meeting with you via telephone and we will discuss all aspects of the ceremony.

What's the difference between a marriage license and a marriage certificate?

The marriage license is obtained from the county clerk and must be obtained before your wedding. Having a marriage license does not mean that you are married. It is a license to get married. The marriage certificate is obtained after the wedding. Certified copies of marriage records may be obtained in person or by mail from the circuit court clerk's office that issued the marriage license (usually the same office as the county clerk). The marriage certificate is the legal proof of your married status.


-If your ceremony included a rehearsal, any paperwork that needed to be done has already been completed. I will arrive about 20 minutes early. -If your ceremony did not include a rehearsal, I arrive about 20 to 30 minutes early to do the paperwork and collect the marriage license. While you are completing your final getting ready, I connect with any vendors (DJ, photographers) to go over any items we need to discuss, i.e., music cues, stop and pose points, etc. Game time – the big moment has arrived and I perform your ceremony as planned.


I typically make my exit right away. It’s your day and I understand the importance of your intimate family and friend time. I usually make my goodbyes before the ceremony. If I have collected a marriage license from you, I file it immediately after your wedding with the Clerk of Court and once it has been recorded, you can get a certified copy of marriage (you usually can get a copy within 7-10 days.)