Newly authorised celebrant?


You've done the hard work attaining your Cert IV and now, after the initial excitement of becoming registered, you may find some anxiety and confusion about how to get started.

You will be bombarded with information about associations, ongoing professional development, celebrant equipment, wedding website advertising, and so much more ....

Everyone will want your business... including us :-)

So how do you decide what to buy, what to do?

1. Take some time to assess what you need and when

  • celebrancy equipment eg PA, celebrant starter kits (The Celebrants Network Shop sells these too)
  • celebrancy advertising and marketing eg business cards, website, office stationery
  • celebrancy resources eg resources, websites, social media
  • celebrancy support eg celebrant mentor, celebrant associations,
  • celebrancy practice  "business" plan eg how are you going to fund your celebrancy?

2. Set up your basic resources

Resources for brand new Celebrants (available to Members)

Celebrant Starter Kits - The Celebrants Network sells Celebrant Registers and Marriage Celebrant Starter Kits (without the Forms 15 which must be purchased from Canprint.)

A Practical Guide to Celebrancy - Compiled by the Association of Civil Marriage Celebrants of Victoria (ACMCV) Inc.
An excellent and popular guide for new celebrants wanting to refresh their information, and for longer term celebrants reviewing theirs.

Have a Web Presence - Joining The Celebrants Network includes an entry in our online Celebrant Directory

3. Think about your longer term goals

  • doing weddings only
  • offering ceremonies for all occasions
  • specialising in a particular way

4. Be optimistic but realistic

If you think doing weddings only will make you income, you are likely to be disappointed.

  • The Celebrants Network sees being a civil marriage celebrant a privilege and an opportunity to pioneer the next stage of celebrancy.
  • Our career or craft as civil ceremonialists is less than 40 years young, although there is an immense traditional upon which to draw from religious celebrancy.
  • Celebrancy will be hard work for most, but personally rewarding and enriching.

5. Not every celebrant will share your excitement!

  • Some will.
  • Some won't.

Previous training programs may not have explained the history of celebrancy in Australia to their trainees. Nor the realities of being able to gain a decent wage from wedding work.

The previous standard of training was too low to prepare many celebrants to function competently without any extra assistance and support. This has created false expectations of new celebrants and resentments amongst longer term ones.

Some longer term Celebrants have put a lot of time and effort into building their skills, knowledge and experience and some would prefer not to just 'give it away' to a new celebrant.  There are also some long term Celebrants who freely share their resources with new Celebrants.  Either way, it shouldn't just be expected.

A bit of Celebrancy history...

When the number of civil marriage celebrants was restricted per head of population (and the government set the fee), it was a privilege to mentor one's colleagues, as celebrants all had the same chance of gaining weddings.

  • Celebrants prior to 2003 worked via non-profit associations to better their skills. In that framework sharing was a win:win for all.
  • Now marriage celebrancy has been determined to be an open market, celebrants do not have the same chance of doing weddings. Many areas have a much higher number of marriage celebrants per head of the marrying public than others.
  • All marriage celebrants now have a lower chance to do wedding work than prior to 2003. The number of civil marriage celebrants has escalated, whilst the rate of wedding work has remained the same.
Many celebrants are reliant on their work as celebrants for their part-time or full-time wage and mentoring can be seen as training up your competitors to take your clients

6. Organise mentoring support

While you sort the wood from the trees, make sure you have someone to rely on to be your personal marriage celebrancy mentor.

  • We have some long-term celebrants with a wealth of knowledge, experience, patience and respect for new and longer term celebrants
  • Some training organisations offer mentoring
  • Others find celebrants via our forums to privately support them
  • But whatever you do make sure it's an equal exchange - If not money then ensure you can give back in some other way

7. Join us - The Celebrants Network Inc

The Celebrants Network welcomes: 

  • registered marriage celebrants whether you are full-time, part-time or doing occasional ceremony work.
  • student celebrants doing their Cert IV training or waiting to become registered.
  • funeral/memorial celebrants
  • family celebrants

Our joining fees are designed to encourage you to work with us, so we can all bring fresh approaches to celebrancy issues.

We believe our membership is a must for every celebrant who wants to be the best celebrant they can be. But then we may be a little biased :-)

The Celebrants Network is a member of the Coalition of Celebrant Associations (CoCA) and is a celebrant resource service hosted by a non-profit community based celebrant association.

  • Celebrant associations are not-for-profit groups with a variety of aims and services for their members. Most associations do not have paid officers. 
  • Members "own" their association, and need to be actively involved in making their needs clear to their Committees.
  • Their committees are served, mostly by volunteers, though some associations do allow for Committee members to gain income from their association activities.
  • Committees are there to serve their members, not vice versa.
We strongly advise joining our association as CoCA associations work togeher for the advancement the celebrancy profession as a whole.

8. Purchase a CAL celebrant copyright licence

  •  A low cost CAL group celebrant copyright licence which grants permission to use, email and store material  is available for all celebrants.

9. Take out celebrant insurance 

  • The Celebrants Network offers a low cost Group Celebrant Insurance for our members.

If you would like more information, please contact us

Last modified on Tuesday, 12 December 2023 20:01

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