Frequently Asked Questions
How long have you been a marriage celebrant?
I was appointed a marriage celebrant in April 2011. I officiated my first marriage in September 2011, so I have now been a Marriage Celebrant for over 9 years.
How many weddings have you officiated?
It has been my privilege to marry over 150 couples.
I consider every wedding I am involved with a privilege and a new challenge. Each couple is different and I want to give them the best ceremony I can. Nothing gives me greater pleasure than knowing that I have contributed positively to their special day.
Where have you officiated marriages?
I have celebrated marriages at the following places:
- Mudbrick Restaurant and Vineyard
- Stonyridge Vineyard
- Delamore Lodge
- Goldie's Vineyard
- Cable Bay Vineyard
- Tantalus Estate
- Man O' War Vineyards
- Batch Winery
- Te Whau Lodge
- Fairgrounds Estate
- Wild Bay
- The Venue, Onetangi
- The Estate
- Casita Miro
- Poderi Crisci
- Onetangi Beach
- Enclosure Bay
- Palm Beach
- Oneroa Beach
- The Pontoon in Picnic Bay
- Church Bay Esplanade
- Pohutukawa Reserve, Onetangi
- Anzac Reserve
- Pukeatua Reserve
- Korora Reserve
- Onetangi Forest and Bird Reserve
- Te Toki Retreat
- St Georgina's Barn, Onetangi
- White's Bay
- Pegasus Lodge, Chapel Hill
- Wharetana Bay
- Woodside Bay
- Full Circle Yurts
- On a boat off Woody Bay - Rakino Island
- The French Cafe - Central Auckland
- Parnell Rose Gardens - Parnell
- Mecca Stonehouse - Mission Bay
- Magazine Bay - Maraetai
- Hiwinui Country Estate - Palmerston North
- Private residences both on Waiheke and in Auckland
Why and how did you become a marriage celebrant?
I was a member of the local Waiheke Community Board for 6 years from 2004 to 2010, and Chairman of the Board for the last couple of those years. When I chose to not stand for re-election I looked at other ways that I could work within my local community. A number of people had asked me if I was a marriage celebrant and planted the idea that it was something that I would be good at. On Waiheke there is a real need for capable, articulate, professional local people to take on this role and I put my hand up. Being well known and respected on the island and a person who had demonstrated leadership and community service were I believe qualities considered important when I applied to become a celebrant.
Why do you do it?
I love it. It is energising to be part of a couple’s special day. It is a privilege that I don’t think I would ever stop being grateful to have. If I do, I will stop doing it. Weddings are always joyful experiences and it’s magic to help couples celebrate their love and commitment with their family and friends.
Same sex marriages?
I have married several same sex couples. Marriage is a celebration of love and commitment. I have many gay friends and have been fortunate enough to marry some of them. I am totally in support of our rules in New Zealand that say that independent marriage celebrants must not discriminate between heterosexual and homosexual couples. I welcome the opportunity to marry more same sex couples.
Is this your main job?
No.. I am Deputy Principal at Waiheke High School. I have been in this role for over 18 years and it is a great job in a great school. I have however always enjoyed new challenges and experiences and this is a great way to use my skills as a people person and a communicator. I wish I had thought of doing this earlier, but I am a firm believer that when the time is right opportunities will present themselves.
Being a marriage celebrant fits nicely with my main job as most weddings occur during the weekends or during the long summer holidays. I take my career very seriously and work hard to ensure that I do not compromise either role.
Do you do more than one wedding on a day?
Generally not. I have at times but only when I am certain that the weddings are far enough apart on the day that I would be able to give both ceremonies the care and time each needed.
Can you do weekdays?
I try not to let my weddings interfere with my school work. Obviously I have more opportunities to officiate after the school day and am usually available from 4PM onwards. With plenty of notice I can sometimes be available earlier.
Fortunately our long school holidays are during the summer and so I can usually be available most days from around mid-November to the end of January.
How do I know you will do a good job?
Call me, Skype me or meet with me. Have a look at some of the ceremonies I have prepared and celebrated. I am happy to provide contact details of couples I have married. Look at the feedback on this website.
Do you officiate weddings off Waiheke?
Yes when requested. Although I do not actively advertise my availability off island, I have officiated a number of weddings off-island as you can see from the details given above.
We want to elope and get married on Waiheke. Can you organise this for us?
Yes, I can organise everything for you. Contact me and I will be able to give you a quote for all the elements that you would like: accommodation, venue, celebrant, flowers, photography, witnesses, music, food etc.
Whose responsibility is it to apply for the Marriage Licence? The couple getting married must apply for this. This can be requested online: www.marriages.services.govt.nz Alternatively the forms that can be filled out are available from the Essential Documents section of this website.
I want to fill in your name on the form to get a Marriage Licence. What should I write?
My full name is Anthony John Sears, but I've always been called Tony. I am listed as Tony Sears.
If I haven’t answered any questions you have, contact me.. I will add to this if more questions arise…