How to Get Ordained Online: 5 Easy Steps to Ordination

Were you asked to officiate a wedding, but don’t know how to get ordained? Or is ‘getting ordained’ on your bucket list? It’s on mine! There’s something quite beautiful about formalizing the union of two people in love in front of family and friends. And, if you would like to be the minister at a wedding of your loved ones, you can do it. It’s actually quite simple if you know the steps of how to get ordained online.

How to Get Ordained Online in 5 Simple Steps

5 Easy Steps to Getting Ordained Online


Millions of people have gotten an ordination certificate because many of those getting married prefer the officiant to be a friend or family member. You can also do it has been on your wish list for some time. If you follow all the requirements, getting a certificate as an ordained minister from sites such as the Universal Life Church (ULC) is usually a quick process.

1. Research the Laws in Your State Regarding Officiating a Wedding

It is essential to research state laws before getting ordained especially if your loved ones have asked you to be the minister at their wedding. Each state has different rules and requirements, so it is important to be aware of them before moving forward with ordination.

In the United States, legality of weddings conducted by ministers ordained online may not be accepted as valid in some states. Other states are open to accepting unions of couples carried out by this method. You can check some of the laws at The AMM, but also check with the city clerk’s or county clerk’s office.

Certain states allow a One-Day Marriage Designation where family members or friends can officiate at a wedding ceremony. So you can do both–get ordained online and become a temporary officiant for a day–to conduct the wedding. At some other places, you may be asked for an ordination credential which organizations like the ULC can provide. It is best to contact the marriage officials in the state/city where the wedding will be conducted to ascertain their requirements. Once that’s clarified, the couple is all set to say “I Do”.

How to Get Ordained Online: 5 Easy Steps to Ordination

2. Find a Website to Get Ordained Online

Just do a web search on how to get ordained online and you will find a few sites. The Universal Life Church is one of the top choices for most people and has ordained millions of people including Lady Gaga and Sir Paul McCartney . Other good options are Universal Ministries, American Fellowship Church, Rose Ministries and the American Marriage Ministries (that’s where I got ordained!).

How to Get Ordained Online: 5 Easy Steps to Ordination

3. Click to Apply for Ordination

Do all your research about the various sites that offer online ordination. Make sure that you read the information provided about the process for that particular site. Double-check with other sources and read feedback and reviews from people about the organizations. Once you have finalized the site of your choice, move on to the next step: Click to Apply.

Find the section where you can get ordained online, it’s usually a large button on the homepage. Look for buttons that say ‘online ordination request’, ‘become an ordained minister’ or ‘apply for ordination’. And, click on it.

Wedding shoes

4. Fill the Form

The sites have a form that you need to fill out before you complete your application process. If you thought you would have to fill in a lengthy form with several details, you don’t need to worry. Most sites have a rather short form with basic details for you to fill. It took me under 10 minutes to complete my form.

Some of the things that you need to fill out include your legal name, date of birth and mailing address as well as a working email ID and phone number. Read the policy of the organization if mentioned, pay a fee if applicable (many are free!), and submit your application. It is that simple!

While filling the form, ensure that all the details are correct in terms of spelling, and contain factual information. For example, mention your complete legal name, not a nickname. Double-check all details before you finish the process. Once you have done this, your work is complete.

Wait for your certificate that will be e-mailed to you. The ordination process may be instant or take up to two weeks. You can contact the ministry if you don’t receive it by then. Once everything falls into place, you will become an ordained minister!

Here’s my certificate, I got ordained as part of my birthday bucket list.

Annette White's Ordination Certificate

5. Use Your Certificate and Officiate a Wedding!

Remember, it’s all about the couple on one of the biggest days of their lives, especially if they are your close friends. It’s natural to be a little nervous especially if it’s your first wedding since becoming ordained.

You can do a couple of things to make sure everything goes smoothly on the wedding day. First, prepare a script of the proceedings so that you know what to say. Then, have a rehearsal to get an actual understanding of the ceremony. With these things, you can iron out any potential issues before the wedding.

How to Get Ordained Online: 5 Easy Steps to Ordination

At the wedding ceremony, ensure two things to make it legally valid. One is the Declaration of Intent which is basically the part where the “I Dos” are exchanged. The other is the Pronouncement where you proclaim the duo as an officially married couple. Afterwards, complete all the wedding paperwork with signatures.

So–breathe in, breathe out, relax and conduct the wedding. It might be just as easy as getting ordained online!

Don’t know what to say as the wedding officiant? Read  The 7 Most Beautiful Wedding Ceremony Scripts…Ever

From my experience, the entire process is smooth and getting ordained is something I easily crossed off my bucket list. It is also an honor to officiate at a wedding of your loved ones. Now that you know all about how to get ordained online, just go ahead and do it.


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19 thoughts on “How to Get Ordained Online: 5 Easy Steps to Ordination”

  1. My brother is hoping to get ordained so he can officiate at my wedding this summer, right before we head to St. Barts for our dream honeymoon. Before we started researching this, we didn’t think it was possible, but it really is! I don’t know why more people don’t take this step. It’s such a cool way to add a personal touch to your wedding. It’s much nicer than going to an official registry office.

    Reply
  2. Where is God in this process? After all he is the one that sanctifies the marriage, he 9nly uses the minister as a conduit to preform the ceremony.

    Reply
    • Marriage is a financial institution as far as the law is concerned, considering this is a secular nation with explicit separation of church and state. In that regard, no individual god has a say in who may complete this legal and financial joining. Whether or not a marriage is ‘sanctified’ has no bearing on the legality of it, but is between each couple and their own faiths.

      Reply
    • Does the couple need to go to get a marriage license from their city or is the marriage license I provided enough?

      Reply
  3. Thank you for guiding me. I have been wanting to do this for many years. After my battle of Leukaemia and having 15 family members go to Heaven ,where 2 of my boys and sister ,2 nephews ,and niece ,have broken my heart.,I need to ShineOn what I saw nearly dying from Leukaemia. It be my pleasure uniting Love ones together with The Day they say “I Do” see them ShineOn with Love .too.
    Gods Blessings to All
    SueAnn in Pa

    Reply
  4. Thank you! Your article is very interesting and helpful. However, I would prefer to have a Certificate for more than just to Officiate over Weddings 💒. Will the process be more involved to be a Certified Ordained Minister? Please, excuse me for asking. Because, I believe I know the answer is “yes!”
    Love & Many Blessings to all!! Laura

    Reply

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Annette White the Owner of Bucket List Journey
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