Wedding in North Carolina

--- In, "Bo" wrote:
> I have been asked by close friend in North Carolina to perform their wedding ceremony in Iredell County NC in November of 2012. I live in Auburn, Indiana. I was ordained in 2005-2006. I have performed over 30 ceremonies in Indiana and Illinois. Just by chance I called the Iredell County Clerk's office to check to see if all would be in order. The lady there (Sue) was very nice but indicated (right away, by the way) that the only known marriage that was in dispute was
performed by someone from our Church.
> I was wondering if you know that this is true? What others in NC are doing to perfrom wedding ceremonies. What I can possibly do to perform this wedding or find someone that might help.
> Thank you
> David "Bo" McKie

Sorry to take so long getting back to you but my job, studying for my computer technician certification and my wife's recent eye surgery have really kept me hopping. I spoke with the clerk at the Iredell County Registrar of Deeds office. That is where you will file the marriage license after the ceremony. The only question she had was whether we were associated with the Universal Life Church. I assured her we were not.

She told me that your signature on the marriage license is your sworn testimony that you are an ordained minister with the legal authority to perform a marriage as set forth in the North Carolina statutes:

51-1. Requisites of marriage; solemnization.
A valid and sufficient marriage is created by the consent of a male and female person who may lawfully marry, presently to take each other as husband and wife, freely, seriously and plainly expressed by each in the presence of the other, either:
(1)a. In the presence of an ordained minister of any religious denomination, a minister authorized by a church, or a magistrate; and b. With the consequent declaration by the minister or magistrate that the persons are husband and wife; or
(2) In accordance with any mode of solemnization recognized by any religious denomination, or federally or State recognized Indian Nation or Tribe.

As long as you have your wallet ID from the UM, you'll be fine.

As far as having a problem with a marriage involving one of our ministers, the lady at the Registrar of Deeds office said that you would not present the license for registration and indicated that the couple would present it. I strongly urge you to not entrust the couple with this responsibility. One of our ministers performed a wedding for a sailor and his fiance and gave the signed license to the groom. After the honeymoon, the sailor took the license on the ship with him without registering it. It took the intervention of the groom's commanding officer to get the sailor to register the license. Had he not done so, the minister was informed she could be held liable for legal and civil penalties. You do not want that kind of hassle. It sounds like the minister in question made the same mistake.

So perform the wedding, register the license and wish the couple a long and happy life together.

Best always
Brother Ron
Bishop of the Universal Ministries