Weddings by Kara

I would be honored to be a part of your special day

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Want to combine a Catholic prayer, a Buddhist blessing and a Jewish observance all in the same ceremony? Do you want your day to feel spiritual but you are not into organized religion? Are you of two different faiths and don’t want to choose between them to join you in marriage? Then you have come to the right place. I specialize in and have officiated at many weddings over the past five years. Whatever type of ceremony is needed I will gladly provide. I have done traditional weddings, weddings for same-sex couples and weddings for couples of different cultures, faiths and backgrounds.
The wedding ceremony is the moment of promise when you take your vows and make your commitment in front of those you love. As an officient, I have spent many years celebrating the union of loving couples—I would be honored to do the same for you.

About Me

NJ Officiant Kara Nebus Caulfield

So, they say the best things in life find you and that is absolutely the case when it came to how and why I became a minister. Five years ago a very dear friend called me and said that she was getting married. While I was extremely happy for her, she also had a favor to ask me regarding their wedding day. Giving me the biggest compliment of my life, she said they wanted someone “charismatic” and “well-spoken” to marry them in front of all their friends and family and asked if I would get ordained in order to do so. I didn’t even hesitate—I said yes and was ordained within the week.

The wedding was beautiful but more importantly I felt privileged to be such an important part of their day. Also, in the midst of it all, I had found my new passion!

Rev. Kara Nebus Caulfield

I absolutely love weddings and I love being a part of someone’s special day. There is no greater joy than the love you feel on the day you marry your partner for life. The energy is amazing, everyone is happy, everyone looks polished and beautiful—and who wouldn’t want to be a part of that? Your wedding day will be the best day of your life and I feel blessed and lucky that I get to be around such happiness and help create memories for a lifetime to come.

Four years ago I married the love of my life. It was the most magical day ever, one that I play over and over again in my mind. Fifteen months later we had our first son, Owen and last year we welcomed our second son, Cooper to our family. We are now expecting twin girls. I love being a mom and creating ceremonies and marrying couples every chance I get.

Your Ceremony

It’s your day; your ceremony. It can be whatever you want it to be. Are you traditional? Modern? Spiritual? Do you want an intimate ceremony filled with tender poetry and hand-written vows or a short and sweet ceremony that gets right to the point of bringing you together as one? That is the beauty of having someone on your side that will help you pick and choose the style of ceremony that is right for you.

Together we can custom fit a ceremony that will reflect who you are as a couple and demonstrate the forever kind of love you have for one another or the silly, playful kind of relationship you have that everyone loves to experience when you are together.

You can choose from a variety of readings that can be incorporated into your ceremony, whether or not you would like to take part in writing your own vows and you can let me know if are interested in adding traditional elements such as unity or memory candles, breaking of the glass, jumping the broom or arch of sabers.

Your ceremony is the most important event of your big day. It is the moment that leads up to the exciting party celebrating your love and commitment to one another and it sets the tone for the rest of the day. Let me help make it special and unforgettable.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do we get our marriage license?

In New Jersey:  www.state.nj.us/health/vital/marriage_apply.shtml

Or: You can go (in person) to your local municipality in which you or your spouse to be resides.

Make sure you bring:

  1. Proof of ID (driver’s license, passport or state/federal ID)
  2. Proof of residency
  3. Your social security #
  4. A witness, 18 years of age or older
  5. The $28 application fee

In New York:  www.health.ny.gov/publications/4210
All information needed can be obtained on New York State website. For all other states, please inquire and I will be happy to advise.

Where can you marry us?
Almost anywhere! I have married couples at their venue, on the beach, in Central Park, at restaurants, and even in their own backyard. I can marry you anywhere that is special to you. Just be sure to obtain any necessary permits if it is on public property.

How much time do you need to prepare a ceremony?
If you want something simple and straight-forward with nothing personal to you, I can do that immediately. However, if you want a ceremony that really speaks to who you are as a couple, I would welcome as much notice as possible. My calendar also tends to fill quickly, especially during “wedding season” so its best to call as soon as you know your date.

I’ve already been married once and we don’t want to do the “big wedding” again. Do you charge less for a shorter, informal ceremony?
Of course! All you need is your marriage license and two witnesses. I will meet you anywhere and perform a short and simple ceremony that touches on all the important elements of a traditional wedding but only lasts 10-15 minutes. The fee for this type of ceremony is $300.

Do you perform civil unions or marriages (in New York) for same-sex couples? Do you perform interfaith marriages?
Of course! This isn’t even a question, but I do need to address it because I know how important it can be upfront to know someone is completely accepting of any lifestyle. I think it makes things easier to know that you can speak freely with absolutely no judgment. I happily marry couples of the same sex or of different faiths. In fact, it is all the same to me. Love is love, regardless of race, religion, or sexual orientation.

After paying my deposit is it refundable if my circumstances change?
No. The deposit holds your date; therefore I must refuse other bookings to reserve the time for your ceremony.

Can we include elements of different religions? Can we include religious traditions in our ceremony?
Of course! These make for beautiful, meaningful ceremonies. I work with you and your personal traditions to put together a ceremony that truly reflects your wishes. I have many prayers and religious readings to choose from if you desire or you can tell me the ones that are important to you. I will also do a blessing at the beginning of your reception if you would like.

Thank you for visiting my website…I have tried to answer as many questions as possible within my site.
However, if you have any other questions or concerns please ask me and I will be happy to address them.
Rev. Kara L. Caulfield

Package & Fees

As an ordained minister it is my pleasure to perform your marriage or civil union.
Below is a list of ceremony packages that I offer.

Quick Wedding Ceremony... $300

  • A 10-15 minute wedding ceremony performed at the location of your choice
  • Your choice of vows and ring ceremony
  • Filing of the marriage license with the local registrar

Standard Wedding Ceremony

  • A 15-30 minute ceremony performed at the location of your choice
  • The couple may choose their vows, ring ceremony, readings and options available within the ceremony from samples
  • Rehearsal prior to the “big day”
  • Filing of the marriage license with the local registrar

Please note all prices reflect time and travel.

  • In Northern NJ (Bergen, Essex, Morris, Passaic, Union) $500.
  • In Central NJ (Middlesex, Monmouth, Ocean) $550.
  • In Southern NJ $600.
  • In New York, Manhattan, Long Island $700.

Inquire within for additional areas not listed above.

My standard wedding package includes a face to face first time meeting, writing of your ceremony, unlimited emails and phone calls, your rehearsal dinner and of course my undivided attention on your big day. There are no additional fees.

A non-refundable $100 deposit holds a date firm.

Tips

Readings

  • Involve special friends or family in the ceremony by asking them to read.
  • If you love to travel, use a section from Dr. Seuss’s Oh, the Places You’ll Go!
  • Major music lovers? Share the lyrics of a song you both find meaningful.

Rituals to Adapt

Even if your ceremony isn’t religious, it can still feature touches that symbolize unity.

  • Water: Representing openness and fluidity, it can be run over your hands or poured into a vessel.
  • Lei exchange: A Hawaiian tradition, this garland represents commitment.
  • Arch of sabers: The newlyweds walk back down the aisle under swords held by fellow military officers.
  • Unity candle/Unity sand: It represents the coming together (or unity) of the couple and their two families to form a single, indivisible whole.

Writing your own Vows

Find a pen, paper, and some time and get to the heart of the matter.

  • Jot down a love letter to your fiancé. Don’t think too much—just write honestly and try not to edit too much.
  • Note all the things they have offered you while dating, such as unconditional love, support, or space to be who you are.
  • Write a promise you would like to make for your marriage.
  • You’ll find that you now have a beginning (what you love about them), a middle (how they’ve made you better), and an end (your promises.) String these sections together, fine-tune the wording, and you have your perfect, hand-written vows from the heart!

Testimonials

My husband Daniel and I were married by Kara 3 years ago and we still get compliments on how incredible our ceremony was! All our family and friends were amazed by the ceremony Kara wrote. It was meaningful, beautiful, and it was the perfect storybook of our lives. She told our love story and included the traditions that were important to us.

Before we found Kara, we had spoken to other ministers who insisted on doing or saying certain things regardless of our wishes. Kara was professional, reliable and made herself available to us anytime we had questions or needed something. Our wedding day wouldn't have been what it was without her beautiful words and her desire to give us exactly what we wanted.

- Daniel and Amanda Thompson

Finding someone to officiate your special day can be stressful because you want it to be perfect. We searched for a while until a friend of ours referred us to Kara. She said Kara had officiated their wedding and it was the most beautiful ceremony. May 7, 2013 was the day of our civil union and it was nothing short of perfect. It was a small, intimate gathering at an Italian restaurant in Kinnelon, NJ. We met Kara that day but had emailed back and forth many times before that.

We only picked our vows that we wanted to say to each other and left the rest up to her. We couldn't have asked for a better, more professional and kind person to officiate our service. The ceremony was absolutely amazing, which speaks volumes of her talent, creativity and skill! Our wedding was everything we had envisioned it to be and more. Not only did she create a beautiful ceremony for us, but it was as if she had known us for years. We could not have been more pleased with our special day.

- Marcy and Kim D'Amore

Kara married us in Central Park, New York and made the entire process stress free for us. When we needed some extra help with nontraditional ceremonial wording and flow, she quickly responded with suggestions, past experiences and guided us to other non-traditional ideas. Kara remained flexible and continued to encourage us that it would all work out just the way we wanted it to. We had an amazing wedding day and Kara couldn’t have been more supportive and loving throughout the entire process!

- Scott & Kellie Alton

Dear Kara,

Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for the beautifully orchestrated ceremony on our wedding day.

To me the ceremony was the most important part of our big day. It went smooth, it went soft and magnificent--just as I had hoped.

It was so important to Guy and I to have you be our officiant. Not only are you a dear friend, but I knew no one would compare.

I have always said that your presence, your positivity and charismatic demeanor is what attracted me to be your friend and there is no one else who I would rather have to marry me and my now husband on our wedding day. From beginning to end you were there, step by step. Thank you for keeping it organized and for your super professional suggestions, they were deeply appreciated. Thank you for sitting down with us whenever there was a question or concern, to go through each and every phase of our ceremony word for word. It meant the absolute world to us! You are a very talented young woman and we hope the best for your future.

- Gracious Thanks & Love, Guido & Melissa Appelgren

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