Officiant and Counseling

Can my minister officiate the ceremony?

If you prefer to invite the pastor of your home church or a family friend to officiate, please submit the officiant information form provided along with your application to our wedding coordinator. This step must be completed before the wedding date is finally entered on the calendar. The First Baptist ministry staff will then contact your pastor to offer an invitation to lead the service. First Baptist Church will make every effort to accommodate your wishes as long as the officiant and the service represent the values and traditions of First Baptist Church.


I'm not a member or I live out of town. Will the pastor of FBC officiate our ceremony?

If you wish for the pastor of FBC to officiate your wedding, please contact his assistant, Lori Putnam, via email or phone 843.722.3896, ext. 1.  


If the pastor is available, he will be happy to officiate your ceremony. He will meet with you one time prior to the wedding to get to know you and go over the details of your ceremony. Please contact his assistant no later than three months prior to your wedding date to set up an appointment to go over your ceremony needs.


What type of ceremony does the pastor use and may I use readings in the ceremony?

The pastor customizes a basic ceremony for each couple (please see PDF file on this page or the Resources page) and additional scripture, readings (i.e. poetry) and the unity candle may be added to this ceremony. Readings are permissible upon approval. Please submit your readings to his assistant, Catherine Brewer, via email to have the pastor approve your reading(s). 


What does the officiant honorarium include?

The $300 honorarium includes a meeting with the pastor to go over the details of your ceremony and his services at the rehearsal and wedding. Customarily, this honorarium is given by the groom's family. The check should be mailed to the church address two weeks prior to your wedding date. 


Do we need to go to pre-marital counseling?

We strongly recommend you go to pre-marital counseling either with a local minister or Christian counseling professional. If you are not a member of First Baptist and you need recommendations for the Charleston area, please let us know.


If you live in the Charleston area and do not have a church home, we invite you to attend the Bible Study class for pre-married and newly married couples led by the pastor on Sundays at 9:45 am. This is a great way to meet couples who are in the same life stages!


We also recommend couples read the book "The Meaning of Marriage" by Timothy Keller - an extraordinarily insightful look at the keys to happiness in marriage.