While we are currently under stay at home orders from Gov. Cooper due to Covid 19, there are lots of questions about acceptable reasons to leave home. In one section of the Executive Order Gov. Cooper says you can leave home to take care of family, including attending a wedding. He goes on to remind us of the limit to the size of the gathering to only 10 people. However, nowhere in the order does it list any wedding professional as essential personnel.
When I inquired of our local authorities about this very situation, I was informed that while you can attend a wedding, a wedding is not an essential business or activity. So, unless someone is a part of the family, travel to a wedding is not essential travel and therefore not approved for any of the wedding professionals.
I had hoped for a more definitive answer. But as most things related to wedding officiants in North Carolina, it is perfectly muddy! What we do know is that the only way we are going to truly defeat this virus is by starving it of victims and we do that by “social distancing” and truly remaining at home.
We are asked what we recommend going forward. It is our opinion and suggestion that if you do not currently have a marriage license, DO NOT get one! When you get your license and plan a small gathering to have your wedding you are asking people to break the stay at home order. You are asking people to put themselves and loved ones at risk of infection. If you plan it at your home, you are bringing in people who may be carrying the virus. You may be bringing in people from various communities and mixing them up, increasing the opportunity for cross infection. If you get your license now and need to find an officiant, you are asking them to break the Executive Order to Stay at Home. You are putting them at risk for infection by exposing them to you, your witnesses and any guests you invite (within the limit of 10-which includes the couple plus the officiant and any other professionals you want there). Save your wedding for a time when you can invite your loved ones without putting anyone at risk. PLEASE, PLEASE, DO NOT put anyone in the position of having to break the Executive Order, or put themselves at risk of infection.
If you had planned a wedding for this time period and found your venue and professionals unable to do your wedding due to the Executive Order, work with all your professionals. They all want to find a date in the coming months to have your wedding. They have shared your dreams about your wedding, they have invested many hours in preparing for your day, often already having a financial investment in your day. Understand that they are working with many couples facing the same stress you are and want nothing more than to be able to provide you with the wedding you had dreamed of and planned so long for. If you had already gotten your license, talk with your officiant about what you can and should do going forward.
We truly believe in marriage and the joy it brings to your lives. We love nothing more than working with couples to make their dreams come true. We want nothing more than to protect ourselves and others so that we can work for years to come with couples to make this possible. At this time the only way to protect our couples, ourselves, friends and loved ones is if we all obey the medical professionals and the authorities and stay home. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to call us (336-937-0890) or email us firstname.lastname@example.org