No, I have never missed a wedding. But, I get at least one call about every few weeks from a panic stricken family member or bride with the same story “Our officiant didn’t show can you help?” I am always amazed that someone can do that to a bride. (I have developed a theory about these “officiants” but I’ll save that rant for another time.)
My own system of tracking both “availability forms” and “booking forms” has proven to be a pretty solid management system that utilizes both a digital calendar and copy files. I am also able to verify communication records from the bride and groom, and have learned a few “red flags” over the years, because I generally have four or five couples annually who book me but never tell me that they’ve changed plans or canceled. As I’ve stated on my website, I do not require any booking deposit, but I do ask that you simply let me know if you’ve had a change of plans. No problem, and no questions asked.
Several years ago I was sitting in a restaurant with my family when a bride called me asking me where I was, but as it turned out, she never actually booked me. Her mother got on the phone and apologized about it, saying that she checked my availability but “forgot to book me” as my email “clearly instructed” her to in order to secure the date in my calendar. Fortunately for the that bride, I was able to give her the name of an area pastor who made it to her location to officiate her wedding. It’s probably my years in pastoral church ministry that have instilled in me a certain seriousness about officiating as a ministry, and as always, if I can help I always will!