Interfaith Weddings

Court then Ceremony?

My fiance wants to do a court ceremony and then do another ceremony for the big wedding.  He's Jewish, I'm Christian and he doesn't want to do a ceremony with a rabbi and a pastor, so that leaves us with a court clerk/judge/etc.

I actually have two questions:

1. How common is it to do a small court ceremony with just the 2 of us and then do the big day with friends and family?
2. If we're already married, can we just get a judge to officiate without him actually signing another marriage certificate?

Re: Court then Ceremony?

  • edited December 2011
    I'm a bit confused...

    Why the court ceremony? You can easily have a Justice of the Peace officiate a ceremony for a traditional wedding. And also, if you have the court house ceremony, who would officiate at the traditional wedding?

    Are you planning on telling your family and friends that you will be married already before the more traditional wedding? I always think its a terrible idea to hide this from your friends and family.

    Would you want the judge to officiate at the traditional ceremony or just the court house? Whom ever marries you first would sign the marriage certificate... all other ceremonies would just be for show.
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  • seilandseiland member
    First Comment
    edited December 2011
    Well, it's more just to take the edge off.  With all of the planning, it's just one more thing to think about and for us the big wedding kind of is just for show anyway.  If we do the courthouse then the other ceremony, we're thinking it will just be one less thing.

    My question is: if we do that (courthouse ceremony, then the big day)  is it possible for a justice of the peace (not a religious official) to do the second ceremony?
  • edited December 2011
    Yeah it is.... there's never a need for a religious official at all.

    I HIGHLY recommend telling your family that you will already be married at the big wedding. Eventhough the wedding planning is stressful, lying to your family won't make it any better.
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  • edited December 2011
    My fiance and I were dealing with the same thing. We've decided to go ahead and have the court marriage at the end of this month and then have our WEDDING wedding next year. I was kind of where you're at in wondering about how common it is, but apparently alot of people do it this way. Several of my friends intercultural or otherwise have had a courthouse marriage then a wedding. Once you have a signed marriage certificate, you don't have to have another one signed. In fact, since you're already going to be legally married it doesn't really matter who officiates as long as it's someone you're comfortable with. Congratulations by the way! And don't forget, this is your wedding not anyone else's. Do what makes you happy.
  • edited December 2011
    estory: my husband and i wil have been married almost 3 years before we have our wedding.  it does seem more and moe common these days.
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  • zantsterzantster member
    Eighth Anniversary 500 Comments Combo Breaker
    edited December 2011
    Ditto.  My husband and I did the JOP civil ceremony in 2009.  But since we are both Catholic and the church does not recognize our marriage as valid and sacramental we are going through all the pre-reqs. to have a church wedding next year.  We have to go to all kinds of seminars and workshops because it is taken very seriously.  I also just learned that in many parts of eastern europe it's just the opposite, a church officiant does not have the authority to legally sign off on weddings. So many couples in eastern europe get married at city hall and then have the church wedding!  It's the norm and not against etiquette at all.
  • edited December 2011
    Very common I think, and this will also be what my fiancée and I will be doing. Though we will just have a reenactment later as we don't do the whole church thing. :) Since we'll already be technically married we're going to get a friend to "perform" the second ceremony who couldn't do the legal part but is great with the performance aspect. ;)
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