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I am a Chicago Wedding Officiant
How to Obtain Your Marriage License

Your Wedding Ceremony
Elopement Ceremonies in Chicago
Chicago Justice of the Peace

Pricing and Fees

Contact Me (by email)

(708) 490-8860

See My Weddings

See the Images of My
Wedding Ceremonies

All About My Services

About Thomas Witham
How My Ceremonies Are Different
The Couples I Work For
Wedding Venues Where I've Performed
Religious & Philosophical Expression
Your Greatest Advocate
Letters of Appreciation
For Those Previously Married

Designing Your Ceremony

Facing Your Guests (Modern Format)
Backs Turned (Traditional Format)
Examples of Wedding Vows
Effective Seating
Aisle Runner or Petals
Children in Wedding Ceremonies
The Escorting of a Bride
Taking Parental Vows
The Use of Music
Using a Pedestal
Using a Wedding Carriage
A New Role For Grandparents
Wedding Ceremony Readings
In Memoriam

Ceremonies in Special Places
Ceremonies in Theme
Taking Your Ceremony to Others
Staying in Character
What Name Should I Use?
What if it Rains?
Fibbing Your Start Time
Ceremonies in Candlelight
The Reception Line

The Order of Events

Primary Options:
Read this First
The Unity Candle
Champagne Sharing
The Sand Ceremony
The Blessing Tree
Tying the Knot
Tasting the Elements
Using a Photomontage
The Giving of Roses

Options In Finale:
Butterfly Release
Dove Release
Balloon Release
Tossing Petals
Bubbles in a Wedding Ceremony
Applause Walk

The Five Rules:
Rule One
Rule Two
Rule Three
Rule Four
Rule Five

Advice on Photography
Advice on Wedding Coordinators
Death by Venue
An Invitation To Journalists

Resources and Links

For Those Considering Plagiarism

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Taking Your Ceremony to Others
Emily and Ethan brought their ceremony to a loved one at Christmas time in Lake Forest, Illinois.

Your Ceremony as a Gift

If you and I are lucky, really lucky, we will live into our eighties or nineties. For most who reach that age there typically comes a restriction in freedoms. Often, some form of assisted living is necessary to maintain a quality of life. Many elderly lose the ability to walk while others cannot leave their beds. We might have other loved ones, of any age, who are restricted to hospitals or care centers because of illness or injury. Their lifestyles are equally "shut in."

If the setting of your wedding ceremony is not critical to you, and if you have a friend or relative who is confined to a home or facility then feel free to consider having your ceremony in their company. You can imagine what this act of kindness does for them.

Hospitals, nursing homes and care facilities are most often delighted to host such an event. It lifts the spirits of their patrons and brings life and newness to an otherwise highly predictable routine. A Ceremony conducted at such residences or facilities become a loving, heartfelt gift.

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