A Hawaiian Wedding at the Garland Hotel in North Hollywood, and two weddings at private homes in Malibu and Apple Valley


A very long awaited dream came true in Apple Valley California at the beautiful Del Webb Sun City. Connie and Deb are such special ladies they have been together for 21 years and at last they were united ¬†in holy union it was a well-planned major event family and friends came from Iowa Northern California and as close as from next-door to Celebrate. We were blessed with a beautiful perfect California day, slightly breezy and 75* temperature. Connie and Deb are so well loved by all who know them. ¬†The whole community came together and gifted the glorious celebration while insisting on helping from the wedding cake and cupcakes made by a neighbor to music / sound system, flowers and photography all was covered . Thanks to Midge for her awesome skills of keeping it all together and on point . Officiant Lisa was joined by others as they sang beautiful special selected songs. And others did readings from Scripture this was a very heart felt beautifully orchestrated ceremony. Everyone’s hearts were filled with joy for Connie and Deb. We wish these ladies a beautiful happy future filled with abundance and yes dreams do come true Bravo

On September 30, 2017, a dream came true in Malibu, California. High, very high ¬†on top of the world, Mark and Lorna became united in matrimony. ¬†They are from two different continents… When Lorna arrived in the United States from Ireland she had a deep feeling, a yearning in her soul – she knew that her husband was waiting for her her in America. ¬†Mark was that man! Yes, a soulmate, it’s true. They met at Melrose Caf√© in West Hollywood, ¬†California – ¬†it was intense and instant, “just like a magnet”, as Lorna says. From that day forward they never left one another’s side! ¬†They fell deeply, madly in LOVE.

Great Officiants Lisa Smith had the honor and pleasure of working with these beautiful souls. ¬†She composed and delivered the perfect heartfelt Light Catholic Ceremony, combined with our Unity Candle Ceremony.. ¬†Lorna’s Mum brought special candles from Ireland for this part. The Irish musicians were performing beautiful soft Celtic music in the background – ¬†it sounded like angels were present, peaceful and serene. ¬†Love was truly in the air. All of Lorna’s family traveled from Ireland to celebrate – even the family’s dog got to come! ¬†Mark’s mom and family, aunties, and cousins came from Texas. Unfortunately, Mark’s ¬†Mother broke her ankle. But that didn’t slow her down. Luckily Lorna is a Registered Nurse and knew exactly what to do to take care of her new Mother in Law (this was the first time they met!) ¬†The good news is, she will be ok. She was so excited for her only Son that she said she felt no pain. The ceremony was concluded with cheerful Irish Celtic music throughout the evening. Everyone ¬†dined and celebrated under the stars overlooking the fabulous and beautiful Pacific Ocean. ¬†Congratulations to Mr. and Mrs. David – may ¬†their dreams continue to come true! Thank You so much for choosing Great Officiants.

At the first trumpeting of the pu (conch shell) by A. Mauricio, Miki’s and David’s unsuspecting guests turned to see what produced the sound and from where the sound came. That initial blast was followed by a second, which gave way to a third longer, extended tone.¬† A. Mauricio then further surprised those gathered as he began to recite Onaona i ka hala me ka lehua…”,¬†the opening line of the Oli Aloha¬†— a traditional Hawaiian welcoming chant — while walking¬†down the aisle.¬† As he took his place before the couple’s family and friends, A. Mauricio¬†concluded the chant with¬† “Aloha ńď.¬†Aloha ńď.¬†Aloha ń†(which has been translated to mean “Love is here.¬† Love is now.¬† Love is.”).


Until the sound of the conch shell was heard, the only ones who knew that Miki and David had chosen to celebrate their wedding Hawaiian style, or in what A. Mauricio described as an “Aloha Infused Wedding”, were the bride and groom, and their DJ.¬† As the ceremony began to unfold, there was little doubt left.¬† ¬†In addition to the trumpeting of he pu and the welcome chant, ceremonial observations included a lei exchange between the couple, and a ring blessing using elements that are distinctly associated with the Islands — a koa wood bowl containing Pacific Ocean water, and a ti leaf for dipping into and sprinkling the water on the rings.¬† A. Mauricio offered another traditional chant, which begins with the words “Ei-Ah Eha-No…” as the blessing itself.


At the conclusion of the ceremony, Miki and David enjoyed their first honi (kiss) as husband and wife.¬† Afterward, many mahalos (thank yous) were showered on A. Mauricio by both the newlyweds and their guests for having provided a Hawaiian style wedding that truly was unique to the Mainland and memorable.¬† Indeed, for a short while, on a day in mid-October, the Spirit of Aloha rested at the Garland Hotel’s¬†Beverly Park in North Hollywood.


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On the day Ohnmar and Doug were to be married, the sky was threatening rain, and the winds made the cold that much more biting


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This past November 11th, on the day Ohnmar and Doug were to be married, the sky was threatening rain, and the winds made the cold that much more biting. When A. Mauricio arrived at The Pelican Hill Resort in Newport Coast he was met by the venue coordinator who, although wearing a winter coat and shivering, greeted him warmly and directed him to the area where the ceremony would take place and preparations were being finalized.

Once at the gazebo, A. Mauricio learned from the florists that one of the tall glass vases, replete with flowers, had already earlier been blown off its pedestal, sending it crashing to the ground. This news seemed prophetic as later, and just before the start of the ceremony, after A. Mauricio requested that guests mute their cell phones, a strong gust blew and toppled another floral arrangement.

A. Mauricio quipped to the guests that in a Jewish wedding glass breaking is usually reserved for at the close of the ceremony. Not withstanding, he suggested why not take the opportunity to offer celebratory well-wishes to Ohnmar and Doug by shouting “Mazel Tov!”? A number of family members and friends of the bride and groom concurred, and as they raised their voices, a few stray droplets of water began to fall here and there. They were just enough to cause concern, but A. Mauricio held they were just a symbolic representation of the showers of blessings that Ohnmar and Doug had in store for them in married life.

Then as if on cue: After the fallen flowers were gathered, and the last few pieces of glass were swept away… with the groom, Doug, in his place next to the officiant, A. Mauricio, and the bride’s processional music playing… the sun seemed to wake from behind its blanket of clouds, bringing with it blue skies. Its rays stretched, as if in a yawn, and warmed the air making all things bright and beautiful. The scene was made only more bright and beautiful by the bride, Ohnmar, as she made her way down the aisle to join her groom.

Recently in an email correspondence A. Mauricio received the following comment from the couple: “It was a great pleasure having you officiate our wedding ceremony. Your performance was above and beyond our expectations. The ceremony* was very personal and a touch of humor. A lot of guests had tears because it was so loving and touching. Everyone talked about your great performance and asked us how we found you…”

* Ohnmar’s and Doug’s ceremony was made even more unique as they chose to incorporate a ritual called “The Tasting of the Four Elements” which has its roots in the Yoruba culture of West Africa. In the observation the couple tasted flavors that represented four elements that comprise a marriage.

As a side note, Ohnmar and Doug came to the Great Officiants office with the intention of having A. Mauricio only issue their Marriage License, however, the couple liked him so much that they asked him to also be their Officiant!

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Congratulations to Sylvia and Ben… “Mazel Tov” and “TrńÉm nńÉm hŠļ°nh ph√ļc”, too!


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Congratulations to Sylvia and Ben… “Mazel Tov” and “TrńÉm nńÉm hŠļ°nh ph√ļc”, too! The happy couple celebrated their wedding¬†in mid-October¬†at Top Chef Shirley Chung’s Twenty Eight Restaurant in Irvine.

Thank You to Ben’s mom, poet Leslie Neustadt, who posted the following kind words: “Mauricio conducted the interfaith service for my son’s wedding. He communicated well with my son and daughter-in-law in creating the ceremony they wanted. They had asked me to write a poem and blessings to read at their wedding. Mauricio coordinated with me but did not appropriate any of the material.(Something that other officiants have done to me.) He thoughtfully included my piece in the booklet he prepared for himself.* He clearly derives joy from conducting wedding ceremonies and it is reflected in everything he does. He has just the right mix of solemnity, good humor and joy to make a ceremony a memorable occasion.”

* Leslie is referring to the program script A. Mauricio creates to ensure that the couples for whom he officiates have a wedding is personal and as unique as they are.  Additionally it lists the names of the Wedding Entourage as well as with the song titles, with artists names, used during the ceremony.  After the wedding A. Mauricio leaves the script with the couple as a memento/souvenir of their Special Day.

Photo¬†credit (Sylvia¬†wearing an¬†“√°o d√†i”, or traditional¬†Vietnamese¬†dress) belongs to Barbara Mencow Neustadt.

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Photo credit Barbara Mencow Neustadt

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