A condensation of the duties of individuals may prove useful:
Responsibilities of the Persons to be Married
- To write a letter to the clerk of the monthly meeting under whose care they wish to be married, signed by both bride and groom, stating their intention of marriage and enclosing, if available, the blessings of their families.
- To meet with a designated committee of clearness and to supply relevant documents and references as arranged before hand.
- To write a second letter to the clerk for presentation to the session of the monthly meeting at which the committee on clearness makes its report, requesting permission to be married in a regular or appointed meeting (the latter is more usual) and proposing, if they so desire, the names of Friends they suggest to serve as a committee of oversight for the wedding. The day, hour, and place where they desire to have the marriage take place should be included.
- To refrain from sending wedding invitations until the proposed marriage is allowed by the meeting.
- To meet with the committee of oversight at a time and place suggested by the committee to discuss plans for the wedding and reception to follow, including such matters as any proposed change in the wording of the vows, the choice of persons to read the marriage certificate and to close the meeting for worship.
- To have the Friends' marriage certificate prepared in ample time. Information concerning the details involved in this part of the procedure may be had at the office of the Yearly Meeting. (See Appendix 3, B.)
- To inform themselves of the legal requirements of the state in which the marriage is to take place, and to obtain the forms to be used to comply with them.
- To be sure that the license is given to the committee of oversight before the wedding and that the marriage certificate is present at the wedding.
- To commit to memory long before the wedding day the promises to be made to each other.
- To sign the marriage certificate after the promises have been made.
Responsibilities of the Clerk
- To present the letter of intention to marry and the letters from the parents or guardians, if available, to the monthly meeting immediately following the receipt of them.
- To see that the committees on clearness report to the monthly meeting.
- When the report has been accepted:
- To request that the meeting appoint a committee of oversight for the wedding and also that it grant permission for a meeting for worship to be held at the time and place requested for the wedding.
- To inform the bride and groom that they are free to proceed with their plans.
- To sign the marriage license and deliver it to the appropriate civil authorities.
Responsibilities of the Committee on Clearness
- To make inquiry and conscientiously satisfy itself that there is nothing to interfere with the accomplishment of the marriage. The bride and groom should be visited together as well as individually. The two women Friends inquire into the bride's clearness for proceeding in the marriage, and the two men Friends make similar inquiries of the groom. Neither reticence nor timidity should prevent discussing any subject relevant to the marriage.
- To report its findings and recommendations to a subsequent session of the monthly meeting.
- To make available books and pamphlets on marriage, and, when appropriate, to refer the bride and groom to an available marriage counselor.
- To be informed concerning legal requirements for obtaining a marriage license.
- To make sure that the welfare of children has been considered and their rights legally secured, if the bride or groom has children.
- To be available to assist in any way that may be needed.
Responsibilities of the Committee of Oversight
- To see that the wedding is accomplished with dignity, reverence, and simplicity.
- To meet with the persons being married to discuss plans for the wedding, including any proposed changes in the wording of the vows, the choice of persons to read the certificate and to close the meeting.
- To see in advance that all legal requirements have been met and that the proper license has been secured; also to see it properly executed and filed by the clerk with the appropriate civil authorities within the specified time.
- To arrange for the care of the certificate following the meeting for worship and to see that opportunity is given for those present to sign it.
- To arrange for recording the certificate, as required by the monthly meeting, and to give the recorder an address to which the certificate is to be returned.
- To report to the monthly meeting whether the marriage has been suitably accomplished, whether the legal requirements have been satisfied, whether the certificate has been properly recorded, and to report the married names for recording in the monthly meeting minutes.
- To see that the reception, if any, to follow the wedding is appropriate to the character of the occasion which it celebrates.