The Hawaii state flag

How to Become an Ordained Minister in Hawaii

If you haven't yet become ordained with the Universal Life Church, that is the first step. Anyone willing can become a legal minister of the ULC, one of the world's largest religious organizations. Online ordination is fast, easy, and completely free. Once you have your minister license, you'll be eligible to officiate a wedding. To become a minister, start by clicking the button below!

Become Ordained!

How to Officiate a Wedding in Hawaii

Unlike most other states, in Hawaii marriage licenses are handled at the state level - not by individual counties. Ordained ministers, including those of the Universal Life Church, must register through the State of Hawaii Department of Health to become "Licensed Religious Marriage Performers". After you become ordained, register at the following link: State of Hawaii Minister Registration. The process is relatively simple, but it's recommended that you complete it at least two weeks in advance of the ceremony. Once registered, you will be issued an official Hawaii minister license certificate and number.

Important: the local offices that distribute marriage licenses may require further documentation from you in addition to the state certificate. Below you will find information for Dept of Health offices in each county - we recommend contacting them to figure out what is required.

Select your county to view information for each office:

The Hawaii state flower, the Hawaiin Hibiscus

The Hawaii state flower, the Hawaiin Hibiscus

What Do You Need to Perform a Wedding in Hawaii

The most commonly requested documents are the Letter of Good Standing and the Ordination Credential. These documents, as well as anything else you might need, are available in the Church Supplies section of our website. Even after you've registered in the state, it's possible the local marriage office will ask you to present proof of your ordination before they will accept the legality of the ceremonies you've performed. Keep in mind that the couple may like to see your ordination credentials as well. Please try to place your order well in advance of the wedding to avoid complications.

How to Get a Hawaii Marriage License

Licenses are issued by local marriage offices, and will be picked up by the couple. As a minister, it's your responsibility to know how marriage licenses work in Hawaii and its individual counties. For example, if the couple plans to get a Hawaii County marriage license, you should double-check if there are any rules specific to Hawaii County. In Hawaii, the license is valid for 30 days, and there is no mandatory waiting period before the ceremony can take place. Finally, the signed marriage license must be returned to the issuing office before it expires. If the couple is headed off on their honeymoon, you might offer to return it for them.

How to Perform a Wedding

Congratulations, you're ready to officiate the wedding! If you need any assistance in this important task, we encourage you to utilize the tools below. Together these exclusive resources include everything you'll need to craft the perfect wedding ceremony for any couple. Created with our ministers in mind, they offer tips and helpful information for all aspects of performing a ceremony. Fun fact: many ULC ministers have become professional officiants using these tools as a guide!

Finalizing the Marriage

After you perform the ceremony, you will sign the marriage license along with the couple and their two witnesses. Your title is 'minister', the ceremony type is 'religious', and the denomination is 'non-denominational'. You will not be required to provide a license number. You may also wish to give the couple a commemorative gift, like a marriage certificate to mark their special day. Last thing: make sure the signed license gets resubmitted to the marriage office before the deadline!

Hawaii Marriage Laws

Hawaii marriage law is primarily directed by Chapter 572 Title 31 of the state's Codified Statutes. This section defines persons authorized to perform a marriage in the State of Hawaii, which includes ordained ministers of the Universal Life Church, among other individuals. We've reproduced the relevant portion below:

572-12 By whom solemnized. A license to solemnize marriages may be issued to, and the marriage rite may be performed and solemnized by any minister, priest, or officer of any religious denomination or society who has been ordained or is authorized to solemnize marriages according to the usages of such denomination or society, or any religious society not having clergy but providing solemnization in accordance with the rules and customs of that society, or any justice or judge or magistrate, active or retired, of a state or federal court in the State, upon presentation to such person or society of a license to marry, as prescribed by this chapter. Such person or society may receive the price stipulated by the parties or the gratification tendered. [CC 1859, §1285; RL 1925, §2950; am L 1929, c 104, §6; RL 1935, §4640; RL 1945, §12361; RL 1955, §323-12; HRS §572-12; am L 1969, c 19, §2; am L 1974, c 15, §1]

Case Notes

In adultery, testimony of clergy who was authorized to solemnize and perform marriage is admissible. 10 H. 440. If record introduced, not necessary to prove that celebrant had authority to solemnize. 10 H. 442. No ceremony necessary, but license is. 25 H. 397, rev'g 16 H. 377. Cited: 74 H. 530, 852 P.2d 44.

To view the in-depth wedding laws for Hawaii state:

Hawaii Marriage Laws