Information on How to Get Ordained and Register as a Minister
How to get ordained and perform a wedding or ceremony in Kentucky.
Since 2010, Open Ministry has been ordaining and helping people all over the world perform weddings, ceremony and other sacerdotal duties. This page focuses on requirements and information for Kentucky, if you don't need the States Statues or ordination information for Kentucky scroll down to the bottom of the page for links to other states.
Let's get started with the information for Kentucky
If you are planning to get ordained in Kentucky or you have been asked to perform a wedding ceremony in Kentucky, or simply need to to find a minister in Kentucky to perform your wedding ceremony the information on this page will assist you. If you still have questions we invite you to visit our FAQ or contact us for more detailed information. We are here to help and support our ministers and congregation.
Registered Ministers with Open Ministry have successfully performed thousands of marriages in Kentucky and around the world!
The Ordination and Officiant information is provided below in an easy five step layout which is designed help walk you through the most common steps on registering to become a minister for Kentucky and how perform a wedding ceremony in Kentucky.
Step 1 - How to Become Ordained
How to get Ordained in Kentucky and become a minister to perform weddings and marriage ceremonies in Kentucky
Ordinations for Kentucky are completely free and can normally be completed in less than a day. Thousands of people have registered and became licensed ministers in Kentucky. Once you have completed the ordination process you are able perform marriages through Open Ministry in and for the state of Kentucky!
Become Ordained for free and start your journey as an authorized minister in Kentucky with Open Ministry.
Get started today by clicking on the link below!
Step 2 - Contact The County Clerk
How to Register to Officiate a Marriage in Kentucky
Next, contact the office of your local marriage authority (typically your county clerk in Kentucky). Let them know that you are a ordained minister with Open Ministry in California, and ask them what information the will require of you, to officiate a marriage in Kentucky. Most clerks and governing agencies may require that you present them with a physical copy of your ordination record.
When speaking with the county clerk; it can be helpful to use the following phrases.
- What agency or department issues marriage licenses in your county and how may I contact them?
- I am an ordained minister with a church in California and I would like to register as a wedding Officiant in your county to perform and solemnize weddings.
- I have my Letter of Good Standing and/or Ordination Credential as proof of my ministry and ordination.
- What additional documentation is required for me to register as a wedding Officiant in your county or state?
Step 3 - Getting Licensed to Perform the Marriage
License to perform a wedding in Kentucky
After you've contacted your marriage authority, you will want to visit our bookstore to get physical copies official credentials for presentation and your records. (See Kentucky State Statutes for More Specific Requirements )
When registering in Kentucky you may be asked to display proof of your ordination to the county clerk's before they will accept the marriage license as having been legally solemnized. We typically advise ministers of Kentucky to get a Complete Minister Package for Kentucky which includes your Letter of Good Standing (the live signed and notarized physical copy of your standing with our ministry).
Having your physical copies credentials provides peace-of-mind to couples and others that you intend to marry. Additionally, we recommend at least 4 weeks between the date of the wedding ceremony and your order, to ensure that you receive all of your materials and are able to register in time. Please note that every state and county can impose different requirements. This may include other nominal fees and additional paperwork that may need to be completed before the ceremony can take place.
It is important to note that some county clerks in Kentucky may require wedding officiants to attach a statement which asserts some of the elements in the marriage license upon submission, including the following:
- The time and location at which the wedding took place
- The names and places of residence of all official witnesses
- The religious organization in which the officiant is ordained
- The printed name and address of the officiant
Please note that, when filling out a marriage license, that Kentucky State may request you use the title "Minister" or "Reverend". The County Clerks may also require you enter your denomination, you can use "Non-Denominational". Failing to state a denomination may result in rejection and could require a duplicate marriage license.
Step 4 - How to Perform the Wedding
How to perform a wedding in Kentucky
Once you have completed of the above, you are ready to perform the wedding! Be sure that the couple has picked up their Kentucky state issued marriage license from the appropriate office. Kentucky marriage licenses valid for a set number of days, and there may be a waiting period between when the couple receives the marriage license in Kentucky and when the ceremony may be legally performed in Kentucky. This information should be written on the license and followed to ensure the ceremony is recorded properly.
Please be aware that the signed license must be returned to the issuing office in Kentucky before the time limit is reached. Check the marriage license for the exact dates. Once the the previous matters have been addressed, officiating a wedding in Kentucky can be a great and wonderful experience.
If you have any comments or issues as a wedding officiant in Kentucky, or after you have been ordained, or would like to just asking for guidance on how to perform a wedding ceremony in Kentucky. We recommend that all new Kentucky wedding ministers who have issues or concerns about the ceremony read over our helpful guides.
402.050 Who may solemnize marriage -- Persons present
(1) Marriage shall be solemnized only by:
(a) Ministers of the gospel or priests of any denomination in regular communion with any religious society;
(b) Justices and judges of the Court of Justice, retired justices and judges of the Court of Justice except those removed for cause or convicted of a felony, county judges/executive, and such justices of the peace and fiscal court commissioners as the Governor or the county judge/executive authorizes; or
(c) A religious society that has no officiating minister or priest and whose usage is to solemnize marriage at the usual place of worship and by consent given in the presence of the society, if either party belongs to the society.
(2) At least two (2) persons, in addition to the parties and the person solemnizing the marriage, shall be present at every marriage.
Title XXXV: Domestic Relations - Chapter 402: Marriage - Solemnization
Effective: July 15, 1996 History: Amended 1996 Ky. Acts ch. 205, sec. 1, effective July 15, 1996. -- Amended 1992 Ky. Acts ch. 50, sec. 1, effective July 14, 1992. -- Amended 1978 Ky. Acts ch. 384, sec. 516, effective June 17, 1978. -- Amended 1976 (1st Extra. Sess.) Ky. Acts ch. 14, sec. 401, effective January 2, 1978. -- Amended 1968 Ky. Acts ch. 102, sec. 1. -- Recodified 1942 Ky. Acts ch. 208, sec. 1, effective October 1, 1942, from Ky. Stat. secs. 2103, 2107.