NOTE: Please see Ontario.ca pages on how to get married in Ontario for updates on COVID, marriage licenses, including expiry dates through 2024.
Please accept my best wishes if you are planning a wedding. I am Mary Beaty, a certified Humanist Officiant licensed by the Registrar General and the Ontario Humanist Society to provide non-religious, (non-sectarian, non-denominational, or ‘civil’) legal marriage ceremonies in Ontario. Here is an ENQUIRY FORM, if you wish to see if I am available for your wedding.
Our marriage ceremonies are the same as a ‘civil’ wedding, as conducted by a Justice of the Peace, a Marriage Commissioner, or a ‘City Hall’ wedding, but each wedding is personally written, including values of equality and respect and commitment.
I also provide funeral and memorial services, baby-naming ceremonies, and other secular celebrations of life passage events. Humanist Ceremonies do not use religious language, but are respectful of cultural traditions and may include traditional as well as modern elements of your choice.
Personalized Wedding Ceremonies
Whether you choose a traditional or contemporary wedding, a private elopement or simple legal ceremony (for those planning a destination wedding), or a family or community wedding, each ceremony is prepared with the couple, to reflect your own values, wishes, traditions and style. Here are a few sample wedding ceremonies as a guide.
Traditional or Modern
We offer both traditional wedding ceremonies, formal and informal, and also modern contemporary ceremonies. Our services are simple and unfussy – and we encourage you to include traditions, music and personal touches, including friends, family, and humour! We also ensure that your wedding follows all the legal guidelines and requirements of the Marriage Act of Ontario.
I have been a marriage officiant since 2004, and am honoured to have married over 1500 couples. I am familiar with inter-cultural weddings, non-traditional ceremonies and unique locations, as well as surprise weddings, private elopements, location weddings, weddings with children, pets, and other special circumstances.
About Me: I am a Humanist Chaplain at the University of Toronto, a librarian, a human rights and social justice activist, a teacher, grandmother, writer, and an original member of the Toronto School of Storytelling. As an organic gardener (and former sheep farmer), I am also committed to sustainability, and green issues.
I am a member of the The International Humanist and Ethical Union, The Humanist Association of Toronto, The Ontario Humanist Society, and the American Humanist Association (AHA/US). From 2001-2007, I represented the AHA at the United Nations in New York, and I am a founding member of the Council of Ethics Based Organizations (CEBO)at the United Nations.
You can be married at almost any location in Ontario. I will consider most locations – including apartments, hotels, parks, and even your own backyard. We’ve used settings as diverse as the CN Tower, Ripleys Aquarium, Metro Reference Library, The Royal Conservatory of Music, Royal Ontario Museum, Gardiner Museum, Arts and Letters Club, the Art Gallery of Ontario, (including the intimate Grange Library and Bistro restaurant, and Grange park). Of course lots of sites at the University of Toronto; Hart House, & the Gallery Grill, Knox, Victoria College, Faculty Club, and the UofT MultiFaith Centre. Historic sites such as St. Lawrence Hall, Todmorden Mills, Enoch Turner School House, MacKenzie House, Allan Gardens, Casa Loma, the Brickworks & Distillery. We’ve used many hotels, cafes and small restaurants; from Balzac’s coffee house, to the (former) Rectory Cafe on Toronto island (Star article), to Peter Pan Bistro, Propeller, Grace, The Cadillac Lounge, Il Fornello, Caffino, or unusual venues like Rodney’s Oyster House. Try your local bar & bistro. Just ask them if they can host a small informal wedding!
We’ve celebrated weddings in many other unique spots, including galleries, clubs, castles, forests, boardwalks, on the Rosedale bridge, a rowboat on the lake, a deserted beach in November, a bright January morning in the Skypod of the CN Tower (right), or on the ice rink at Nathan Phillips Square. Whether you choose a traditional, romantic or unusual setting, we help you design a simple, meaningful ceremony which reflects your values and traditions – because it’s YOUR wedding.
Weddings in Toronto, and Ontario
I am available for weddings and ceremonies in most of Toronto, particularly downtown, and at other locations in Ontario by request. (Also in Stratford, ON, all year round). Just send me a message with your date & location, or send this enquiry form and I’ll be happy to answer questions, chat about your plans, and send sample ceremonies, wedding ideas, and a fee schedule. If I’m booked, I’ll refer you to other Humanist officiants, who will perform similar ceremonies.
Mary Beaty, Humanist Officiant, B.A., B.Ed., M.L.S. OHS