Most people who I've known get married, have known a Justice of the Peace or a Priest/Minister closely enough that it made sense to ask them to officiate. Mr. Jet and I have no such luck, we're not affiliated with any church (shame on us lapsed Catholics) and we don't know anyone in our area that is ordained to perform wedding ceremonies.
I started doing some research on officiants in Massachusetts and came across this article: http://www.mass.gov/governor/getinvolved/onedaymarriage/ which states that a friend or family member may be designated as an "officiant for the day" through the Commonwealth with an application, letter of reference and a $25 fee.
My grandmother (my dad's mother) immediately came to my mind. She's been a huge part of my entire life and bonded with Mr. Jet when we first started dating over their mutual love of art and painting. We've both been close to her and we had been looking for a way to involve Nana (pronounced NUH-nuh), as she's our only living grandparent. She's also an avid writer and public speaker, so it seemed like a no-brainer to us. She's supported our relationship since day one and was one of our first phone calls when we announced our engagement.
I was positive she'd say yes, but still nervous to ask! It seemed like a big undertaking for us to write and have her perform a wedding ceremony having never done it before, but we assured her we'd give her everything she needed and she gladly accepted! Her only request was to be seen over the podium. She is 4'11"....
So on our wedding day, my Nana will stand up there and read all of the words that Mr. Jet and I have written and laid out and legally bind us as husband and wife. To say I can't wait for that moment is a tremendous understatement. Having her officiate our ceremony is a wonderful and intimate way to tie her into our day and have someone up there who really knows us, and how much that day means to Mr. Jet and me.
Does your state allow for "officiants for the day"? Would you ever ask a family member or friend to officiate?