Kipp believes that a wedding ought to be authentic, beautiful, and playful. He discovered this value in the midst of his own wedding, and his partner still won’t let him live it down. The two of them had written vows together and intended to recite them from memory. Kipp got caught up in the spirit of the moment and…improvised. His partner got caught up in the spirit of Kipp’s improvisation and…forgot what she was supposed to say. Thanks to a quick-thinking officiant (and a backup script), everybody laughed and the rest of the ceremony went off without a hitch. Kipp promises to bring a similar lighthearted joyfulness (and kind, calming presence) to your ceremony—but without the tongue-tangling surprise.
Kipp grew up in the Washington, D.C. area, and has lived in Philadelphia since 1996. He has held a range of jobs that have one commonality: his passion for working with people in ways that improve their lives and connect them to the wider world. At present, he is both an ordained minister and a professor of religion. He has a gift for speaking that weds humor and empathy in powerful yet intimate ways. This has been especially meaningful to people in the context of wedding ceremonies and memorial celebrations. Some of the highest praise he has ever received as an officiant was after he presided for his grandfather’s funeral, when his parents asked that he write and deliver their own eulogies.
When Kipp is not busy teaching or being pastoral, he likes to read literature, poetry, history, or nerdy religion scholarship; to immerse himself in some John Coltrane; or to watch a good documentary. You might see him running around Philadelphia—especially if he’s training for the Broad Street Run or the Philadelphia Marathon. He is a homebrewer who finds that his beer always tastes best when it’s shared with friends. And though it’s been a long while since he’s had the opportunity to indulge himself, he’s got a minor reputation as a karaoke fiend who can almost credibly rock Prince’s ‘Kiss.’
One of Kipp’s highest principles is the conviction that reverence and laughter do not cancel each other out. And that life is meant to be celebrated.
Both John and I want to let you know how amazing Kipp is. When we met him, we knew he was the one to perform our ceremony. He was such a pleasure to work with. On the day of our wedding, he made the ceremony so sweet and memorable and even calmed my nerves. He added the right combination of humor, religion and heart-felt notes. Our guests were so impressed and we received so many compliments. He is so awesome and we would highly recommend him to anyone who needs a wedding officiant who could add a special flair to their ceremony. Thanks so much and all the best.
We cannot thank you enough for everything you did in honor of our wedding. Please forgive our belated display of gratitude. We have been swept up in enjoying married life to the fullest. As we continue to celebrate our 1st year of marriage, we will never forget the amazing time had that night, that was made even more special by your presence. Our wedding would not have been the same without you and the lasting memories you services helped to create.
With sincere love and heartfelt thanks,
Thank you so much for officiating a wonderful ceremony! It was everything I had envisioned (minus the blazing sun in my eyes and the DJ messing up our recessional song)! You did an outstanding job of making the ceremony memorable and personal, and we couldn’t be happier with it!!! You are a true gem, Kipp! God bless and take care!
Good morning Diane,
I wanted to let you know how thrilled we were with Kipp officiating our wedding on August 20th! He was so easy and pleasant to work with in the weeks leading up to the big day, and he did an amazing job! Everything he said was so meaningful and deep, yet had a lighthearted feel that put everyone at ease. We have had multiple people tell us how much they loved our officiant and how beautiful our ceremony was. Kipp is a great guy and is excellent at what he does and I just wanted to let Journeys of the Heart know that. Thanks so much!
Kipp, Thank you so much for your part in making Friday the best day of our lives. Your ceremony was perfect. We’re still getting comments from guests about how great the ceremony was. Your writing and telling of our love story, your honoring of our families, and your excellent comedic delivery just made everything come together perfectly. Thank you again for all your help.
We used Kipp Gilmore-Clough of Journeys of the Heart for our wedding at Colonial Dames in August 2017. Kipp did such a fantastic job, we’re so glad we found him. After initially reaching out, we met with him once for about an hour and after we confirmed everything, he sent us a detailed questionnaire about our relationship which we took time to fill out carefully. Kipp then turned what we wrote into a beautiful, personalized ceremony. He is such a great writer! It represented us and our relationship so well, while also being lighthearted at times, serious when appropriate and all the while integrating religion as we requested. He provided us with many options for vows, prayers and blessings that we had the opportunity to look through and select the ones that spoke to us. He invited us to edit what he wrote and provide a lot of input and tweaks. In addition to this, he was the most communicative “vendor” we worked with for our wedding– he followed up and checked in frequently. All the while we felt very confident about working with him. On the day of the wedding, his pacing and delivery of the ceremony was perfect– peaceful and energetic all at once. We received many compliments from our guests about how much they enjoyed it and how beautiful it was– even from my uncle who is a notoriously tough critic. In addition to recommending Kipp wholeheartedly, we are so thankful to him for making our special day so beautiful and reflective of us.