a conversation

Q. What kind of couples does Witness Circle work with?

A. I have worked with a wide range of couples from many cultural and religious backgrounds. The conversation of intention and commitment is universal, and I welcome all couples. Our time together is a safe container for this joyful and challenging work, and couples often find it a welcome shift from the judgments and invalidation they may have experienced elsewhere.

Q. I’m not very religious, is that OK?

A. We can create a ceremony as religious, spiritual, or secular as you wish. In the past I’ve incorporated elements from Korean, Jewish, Catholic, and Palestinian traditions, among others. From the setup of the chairs to the structure of readings and vows, I will work with you to create a ceremony whose every element reflects you and your partner. The heart of the process is an inclusive, pan-cultural tradition that honors and welcomes all the ways of blessing marriage and each other.

Q. I’m looking for someone that will get to know me and my partner. What’s the process?

A. Sitting together, you’ll access a deep connection with your wedding, and your marriage. I’ve worked with couples from three weeks to nine months before their ceremony. We have a dialogue about what your wedding is marking, what’s already true in your relationship, and the most resonant way to embody that in a wedding ceremony that’s personal, memorable, and fun!

Q. Will you be part of a rehearsal?>

A. Yes. As part of our agreement, I will lead a rehearsal at no extra cost to you (unless extenuating travel is necessary).

Q. Is it legal?

A. I am a legally-registered officiant, authorized and recognized by the State of New York. Though regulations vary from state to state and change from time to time, my registration is recognized in many New York-area states, among others.

Q. We already had a civil ceremony, and now want to share our commitment with our friends and family. Can you work with us?

A. Sure! In my judgment, it’s in community that our declared intentions take root. In the event you’ve already been to City Hall, or live in a state where our work is not a legal ceremony, the process becomes that much more resonant, reaching through convention and expectations to bring family and friends close to share your commitment to a life together!

Q. We’ll only be in New York City for the weekend. I guess I’m looking for more of a destination wedding. Do you work with couples like us?

A. Yes. In addition to the longer process I offer, I currently work with a destination wedding company, and also work privately, contracting with couples who want a memorable New York experience. Prices are distinct for destination weddings, and I network with a team of wonderful professionals to provide every element for your getaway wedding!

Q. What other kinds of ceremonies do you create?

A. Weddings are a beautiful chance to mark one of life’s great thresholds, but too many of life’s moments slip by without appreciating and marking them in ceremony. Bought a new house? Let’s create a wonderful house blessing to start fresh in your new home. Is there a new little one in the family? Let’s welcome them with a personal, joyful baby blessing! From the passing of elders to a shift in jobs, our lives are filled with significant opportunities to give thanks for what has been, welcome what is present, and move ahead with hope, support, and joy!

Q. Why do you perform weddings?

A. A wedding is a healing, and the most identifiable instance of ritual in our busy modern lives. Witness Circle – Ceremonies, Coaching, and Rites of Passage – is an integrated offering, providing soul and support work in a world too often devoid of connection with ancestry, tradition, and the Earth. For over ten years I’ve worked with these elements, deepening my heart’s work, creating the life I used to only dream of. I love weddings!

Q. How do we get started?

A. For an initial call or in-person meeting with Jonathan, e-mail jonathan@witnesscircle.com, or call (518) 290-0740.