Asheville Wedding Officiant 18-15

Hello, I’m Philip Lingle, Founder, Director, & Head Officiant of Asheville Marriages. I have one of the best jobs in the world because I get to help couples create the wedding day experience of their dreams and achieve a happy and lasting marriage! It is very rewarding for me to contribute to people’s lives in such a positive way. I have provided some answers to frequently asked questions below, please let me know if I can answer any other questions that you have.


How do you say that word??


Not many people use the term “officiant” on a daily basis, so don’t feel bad if you didn’t know how to pronounce it. It simply refers to the “official person” who performs (or officiates) a ceremony.

Some people incorrectly use the term "officiate," which is a verb, not a noun.

How did you become interested in officiating weddings?

I became interested in officiating weddings in 2007 after a friend asked me to create and perform a unique ceremony for her wedding. She said I was the perfect person to officiate her wedding because of my eloquent way with words, calm energy, and my knowledge of a wide variety of philosophies and wisdom traditions. The wedding was a huge success and the experience was so rewarding for me that I decided to continue to officiate weddings for couples with diverse spiritual beliefs.

How old are you?

I’m 48, and my devotion to a healthy lifestyle keeps me looking and feeling young. I avoid processed foods, exercise regularly, and constantly strive for balance in all areas of my life.

Where are you from and how long have you lived in Asheville?

It’s kind of a long story, so I’ll give you the short version: I was born in Columbia, S.C. We moved to a small town in Pennsylvania when I was 3, then moved to Raleigh, N.C. when I was 8. After college in Hickory, N.C. I moved to Seattle, W.A. for a few years before ending up in Asheville in 1998. I’ve lived in Asheville longer than anywhere else, so I really consider myself an Ashevillian. I fell in love with this city immediately and I can’t think of a place that I’d rather live.

Do I get to choose my wedding officiant?

You are welcome to request a particular officiant, but we often have limited availability. Based on your needs, including your wedding style, ceremony date, and availability, you will be matched with one of 10 outstanding officiants who perform weddings for Asheville Marriages. You will have an opportunity to meet your potential officiant, either in person or via phone or Skype, to make sure that you are the right fit for each other. The highly qualified officiants of Asheville Marriages have been carefully chosen based on their experience, background, and positive energy. Click Here for biographical information on each of our officiants.

Do you have anyone to fill in if there’s an emergency?

Always! Not only do we have over a dozen officiants at Asheville Marriages, but we also maintain great relationships with other officiants in the area. We always have at least one officiant on-call just in case there is an emergency. We take your wedding day experience very seriously, so it is important to have this plan in place for everyone’s peace-of-mind.

What is your religion?

I believe there are many paths to spiritual fulfillment and I experienced my own spiritual awakening through the study of Philosophy. Although I was raised Lutheran, I am no longer affiliated with any particular religious denomination. I am ordained as a Humanist Celebrant and I recognize that there is truth and wisdom within every religion, but I don’t believe that there is “one true way.” I’m always open to discussing matters of spirituality and I enjoy hearing other perspectives.

Do you perform religious ceremonies?

Although we specialize in non-religious ceremonies, we do often incorporate religious elements. We also work with a lot of interfaith couples who have different religious traditions on either side. We work closely with them to ensure that the ceremony respects both of their families and traditions, while also being a genuine reflection of who the couple is. Striking the right balance is very important to us.

Do you officiate same-sex ceremonies?

Yes, we proudly support marriage equality and are honored to be able to legally marry same-sex couples. We view this new legislation as a victory for human rights and social justice!

What the difference between the Signature & Custom Ceremonies?

Our Signature Ceremony is a beautiful non-customized ceremony which focuses on the true meaning of genuine love, your connection as a couple, and the commitment that you are making to one another. It has a fairly traditional structure, with some modern touches, and you would have your choice of a non-religious ceremony, or a ceremony with a few religious elements, including a prayer, bible verse, and blessing. It wouldn't mention how you met, or any specific things that you like about one another. Nor does it include any special elements like a unity candle, handfasting, or beer blending (yes, we actually do a beer blending ceremony!). With that being said, we do provide you with various options for your vows, as well as samples and instructions for writing your own vows if you would like to add a personal touch

For our Customized Ceremony, we would send you a questionnaire to get a little more in-depth information about who you are as a couple (i.e. your story, your preferences, specific promises you want to make to one another, what you like about each other, any special elements you want to add, etc.). This ceremony would include more options and suggestions throughout and we would go through a process of editing, revising, and fine-tuning until you are 100% happy with it. Just like the Signature Ceremony, it includes options for your vows, as well as samples and instructions for writing your own vows.

I hope this helps. Just let us know if you have any more questions!

What is the Marriage Enrichment Program?

I created the Marriage Enrichment Program to help couples see beyond the wedding day and stay focused on the ultimate goal: achieving a happy and lasting marriage! Prior to your wedding, I will guide you through a series of worksheets, games, and discussions that you complete in the comfort of your own home. Unlike pre-marital counseling, there are no face‑to‑face sessions, I simply provide the structure, encouragement, and accountability that you need to get your marriage off on the right foot and help your relationship reach its highest potential! Learn More.

What results do couples notice after the Marriage Enrichment Program?

The results are truly immeasurable. Recent studies have shown that good close relationships are the key to a healthy and happy life. After participating in the Marriage Enrichment Program, couples report that they feel a stronger connection with each other; they enjoy confidence on their wedding day; they gain a better understanding of how to achieve a happy and lasting marriage; and they get really clear about their core beliefs and values. Here’s what a few couples have said:

“Philip exudes an aura of wisdom and open-mindedness while being extremely easy-going. But most importantly, the Marriage Enrichment course that he offers helped us as a couple re-connect and get back to what is important – our future marriage! – during a hectic wedding planning period where it’s so easy to lose sight of the ultimate goal.”
~ Anneliese, married 10/25/15

“We opted to do the marriage enrichment program with Philip prior to the wedding. This was definitely worthwhile. Even though Meagan and I have busy schedules and were routinely late turning in the assignments, Philip was always patient and there to keep us calm and on track.”
~ Joshua, married 6/6/15

“My husband & I did the Marriage Enrichment Program Phillip offers, which was so enlightening & helpful to us as a couple who are about to become one. We learned so much about each other & it really brought us closer together.”
~ Danielle, married 8/29/15

Do you have any testimonials from couples you have married?

Yes, you can check out hundreds of five-star reviews on WeddingWire, The Knot, Google, and Facebook. We have also published many of those reviews here on our website.

Do you have liability insurance?

Yes, we have a two million dollar liability insurance policy that covers every officiant that works for Asheville Marriages. This is sometimes required by certain venues, but the obvious benefit here is peace-of-mind.

Do you require a deposit and do you accept online payments?

Yes, we require a 50% deposit to lock in your date and the remainder is due a month before your wedding. We accept all credit and debit cards for online payment, and our quotes and contracts are also paperless.