How to Become an Ordained Minister in Alabama

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 Alabama

Contact the County Clerk's office in the county where the ceremony will take place. Introduce yourself as a minister officiating a wedding, and ask them what documents they will need from you. They may ask to see a number of things, and be aware that these requirements vary from county to county. Rest assured that any materials or documents you might need are available in the Church Supplies section of our website.

Select your county to view contact information for each office:

The Alabama state flower, the Camellia

What Do You Need to Perform a Wedding in Alabama

Once you've determined what you need, simply log in to your account and order the materials from our online catalog. Based on the feedback we've received from our ministers in Alabama we recommend ordering a Classic Wedding Kit. Although ministers are generally not required to register in the state of Alabama, it's possible the couple and the county clerk will ask you to present proof of your ordination before they will accept the legality of the ceremonies you've performed. As requested by the county clerks, please try to place your order well in advance to avoid complications.

How to Get a Alabama Marriage License

Licenses are issued by the County Clerk's office, and will be picked up by the couple. As a minister, it's your responsibility to understand how marriage licenses work in Alabama and its individual counties. For example, if the couple plans to get a Jefferson County marriage license, you should double-check if there are any rules specific to Jefferson County. In the state of Alabama, the license is valid for 30 days. There is no mandatory waiting period before the ceremony can be held. Finally, the signed marriage license must be returned to the issuing office before the expiration date.

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. 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, and witnesses are not required. 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!

Alabama Marriage Laws

Marriage laws in Alabama are primarily directed by Chapter 1 of Title 30 of the state code. This section defines persons authorized to perform a marriage in the State of Alabama, which includes ordained ministers of the Universal Life Church, among other individuals. We've reproduced the relevant portion below: (DATABASE)

Alabama Code - Section 30-1-7: PERSONS AUTHORIZED TO SOLEMNIZE MARRIAGES

(a) Generally. Marriages may be solemnized by any licensed minister of the gospel in regular communion with the Christian church or society of which the minister is a member; by an active or retired judge of the Supreme Court, Court of Criminal Appeals, Court of Civil Appeals, any circuit court, or any district court within this state; by a judge of any federal court; or by an active or retired judge of probate.

(b) Pastor of religious society; clerk of society to maintain register of marriages; register, etc., deemed presumptive evidence of fact. Marriage may also be solemnized by the pastor of any religious society according to the rules ordained or custom established by such society. The clerk or keeper of the minutes of each society shall keep a register and enter therein a particular account of all marriages solemnized by the society, which register, or a sworn copy thereof, is presumptive evidence of the fact.

(c) Quakers, Mennonites, or other religious societies. The people called Mennonites, Quakers, or any other Christian society having similar rules or regulations, may solemnize marriage according to their forms by consent of the parties, published and declared before the congregation assembled for public worship.

  • See more at: http://codes.lp.findlaw.com/alcode/30/1/30-1-7#sthash.AFDc8iQ9.dpuf