Can an Atheist officiate a marriage in the state of Oregon?

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Can an Atheist officiate a marriage in the state of Oregon?

Can an Atheist gain the ability to officiate a marriage in the state of Oregon,
without having to be a judge or county clerk? If so, where do I start? Thank you.

Asked on January 25, 2019 under Family Law, Oregon

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 2 years ago | Contributor

The only way a non-judge/clerk athiest could solemnize marriage is if he or she is an official of a secular organization that "occupies a place in the lives of the organizations members parallel to that filled by a church or particular religious authority," such as the Center for Inquiry, which is a non-religious organization which nonetheless addresses what could be called "spiritual" or philosophical matters and so occupies a religion-like place in people's lives, at least to a degree or extent. CFI has some information about being licensed as a non-religious officiant; here is a link to them: https://centerforinquiry.org/secular_celebrants/


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