How to Become a Legally Ordained Minister in West Virginia:
With the American Fellowship Church the process of becoming an ordained minister / wedding officiant in West Virginia is very simple, just read below and follow the instructions.
Marriage law in the State of West Virginia:
WEST VIRGINIA CODE §48-2-402. Qualifications of religious representative for celebrating marriages; registry of persons authorized to perform marriage ceremonies; special revenue fund.
(a) Beginning the first day of September, two thousand one, the Secretary of State shall, upon payment of the registration fee established by the Secretary of State pursuant to subsection (d) of this section, make an order authorizing a person who is a religious representative to celebrate the rites of marriage in all the counties of the state, upon proof that the person:
(1) Is eighteen years of age or older;
(2) Is duly authorized to perform marriages by his or her church, synagogue, spiritual assembly or religious organization; and
(3) Is in regular communion with the church, synagogue, spiritual assembly or religious organization of which he or she is a member.
(b) The Secretary of State shall establish a central registry of persons authorized to celebrate marriages in this state. Every person authorized under the provisions of subsection (a) of this section to celebrate marriages shall be listed in this registry. Every county clerk shall, prior to the first day of October, two thousand one, transmit to the Secretary of State the name of every person authorized to celebrate marriages by order issued in his or her county since one thousand nine hundred sixty and the Secretary of State shall include these names in the registry. The completed registry and periodic updates shall be transmitted to every county clerk.
(c)(1) Upon written request from the registrant, the Secretary of State shall designate the registrant as inactive on the registry.
(2) Upon written notice from the governing body of the registrant's authorizing body that the registrant has died or that the registrant's authority to perform marriages has been revoked, the Secretary of State shall attempt to notify the registrant of the change in the registrant's status by United States mail addressed to the registrant's last known address. If the registrant fails to provide the Secretary of State with proof of good standing with his or her authorizing body within thirty days, the registrant shall be designated on the registry as inactive.
(d) A fee not to exceed twenty-five dollars may be charged by the Secretary of State for each registration or reactivation of an individual designated as inactive on the registry received on or after the first day of September, two thousand one, and all money received shall be deposited in a special revenue revolving fund designated the Marriage Celebrants Registration Fee Administration Fund in the State Treasury to be administered by the Secretary of State. Expenses incurred by the secretary in the implementation and operation of the registry program shall be paid from the fund.
(e) No marriage performed by a person authorized by law to celebrate marriages may be invalidated solely because the person was not listed in the registry provided for in this section.
(f) The Secretary of State shall promulgate rules to implement the provisions of this section.
Contact the Secretary of State of West Virginia for the required application or download it via : http://www.sos.wv.gov/business-licensing/licensing/Pages/RegistrationofMinisterstoPerformMarriages.aspx
1. By becoming an ordained minister with the American Fellowship Church you are a "licensed / ordained minister who is authorized by a religious denomination", in accord with our rules and customs we authorize you (once ordained & in good standing with our church) to solemnize marriages and/or officiate at marriage ceremonies.
2. In order to remain in good standing with the American Fellowship Church you must hold an unexpired minster license ID card, and be in "regular communion."
Our definition of regular communion; You must contact us at least 1 time per year, and if any of your contact information should change (your name, physical address, or email) you must notify us within two weeks of the change.
3. In order to become ordained you will need to order an ID Card (minister license). We offer ordination for three different terms:
NOTE - You will need to obtain a "Letter of Authorization" Certificate and ID card from us in addition to your license. Please be sure that you choose these options when placing your order.
4. Finally to qualify for ordination with the American Fellowship Church in the state of West Virginia you must agree to the Certification, and our Code of Ethics.
While training is not required in order to become ordained with the American Fellowship Church, we do urge our members to learn more about being an ordained minister, therefore we offer a number of online courses that are self paced and written in plain English. If you are interested in training please see "Online Minister Training"
*The information provided on this page is for guidance only it is NOT legal advice.
We currently have many ordained ministers in the state of West Virginia.
It is critically important that you verify all information with your local marriage license office / county clerk before conducting a wedding ceremony. It is your responsibility to operate within the bounds of the law.