Maria Odilia was born in Africa, the child of a Dutch mother and a Puerto Rican father. She maintains close ties with relatives in The Netherlands and Puerto Rico. She is intrigued and delighted by cultural diversity, and values the people she has met and the art she has explored during trips to the Pacific Northwest, Europe, Japan, and Latin America.
Maria Odilia is nurtured by the love she shares in her family life with her husband of 30+ years, as well as their three unique and lively daughters. Maria Odilia enjoys walking, gardening, tennis, attending theatre, and visiting art galleries. She relaxes through tai chi and regularly practices mindfulness. She is constantly experimenting with new art forms including mosaics and painting. Lately, sewing quilts and trying to learn golf have been her pursuits. She has found more success with the needle than the club!
Maria Odilia is committed to the traditional Quaker values of working for equality, simplicity, nonviolence, integrity, and community responsibility. She describes herself as an attentive, happy, and calming officiant. Whether facilitating a wedding, baby blessing, or a funeral/memorial service, she recognizes that each of these celebrated occasions deeply enriches her own life. She is profoundly honored to share in these life events.
We wanted a non-denominational wedding and we definitely got one! Maria was extremely helpful every step of the way, both with the personalization of the ceremony script and other general wedding inquiries. We couldn’t have a more heartwarming officiant. I really felt this was OUR wedding and she told OUR story.
We have just returned from a post-wedding trip. Thank you for all of your help and making the wedding so special. We couldn’t imagine anyone else having been the officiant. It was perfect. Please let us know if you are ever in the Boston area!
We were so grateful to have you officiate our wedding and will cherish the day (and each other, of course) so long as we shall live!
Sincerely and with gratitude,
Thank you so much for marrying us and being so wonderful – the ceremony you put together was so beautiful!!! It was the perfect day.
Honestly – thank you from the bottom of our hearts! Woo hoo we are married!
Hi Maria Odilia,
We just got back from our honeymoon and I wanted to reach out with a huge thank you for everything that you did to make our wedding so special. Everyone we spoke to has told us how moving the ceremony was and how beautiful and personal it was. We are so grateful and honestly can’t thank you enough! We’re still waiting for official pictures and I’ll be sure to forward them along!
Personal and Uplifting
Maria Odilia was our officiant. She was excellent. She made the ceremony about us – it was our story, not just the typical wedding rundown of whatever religion or generic wedding wording. She was warm, kind and funny. Along with being on time and professional. I cannot recommend her more! She was awesome.
Hi Maria Odilia,
The wedding was fabulous!!! Everyone had an amazing time… especially Scot and I. Several people have commented on the intimacy of the ceremony, it truly was so beautiful. In fact, Scot’s cousin Kristina is going to contact you regarding a baby naming. Speak soon!
Maria-Odilia Romeu of Journeys of the Heart was one of the best choices we made in our planning process. She helped us create and truly personal and meaningful ceremony. Several people told us it was the most beautiful and romantic ceremony they’s ever been to. She made us feel completely at ease and was on top of every last detail day of so we could just relax and enjoy the experience. I’d highly recommend her to anyone!
Absolutely fantastic!!! We chose Maria as our officiant. She just seemed to fit our personality right away and would be perfect to celebrate and officiate me and my husband’s special day. From day one she was friendly and more than accommodating to what we were looking for. As a non religious couple she tailored the ceremony so that it was a unique and beautiful experience for not only my husband and I but our guests as well. The ceremony ran smoothly and was an intimate yet concise event for us and our guests. Highly recommended!
We used Maria Odilia Romeu as our officiant and she did a fantastic job. Leading up to our wedding, Maria was always very prepared, communicated to us everything we needed to know, and made it easy for us to piece together a wedding ceremony that we loved. She did a fantastic job at the ceremony, as well. Many officiants are cheesy or disorganized, but not Maria. Her voice is calming and friendly and, surely because of high level of preparation, she did a really nice job telling our story in a way that our friends and family could appreciate. Suffice to say, we’re very happy that we hired her!
Looking back on our wedding day, the ceremony is 10000% our favorite part of the whole day, and that is thanks in very large part to Maria Odilia! She was such a joy to work with that day and in the months leading up to it. From the first time we met her, we just knew that it was the right fit. She has such a peaceful and calming energy, which for me is exactly the presence I needed during this huge event! I can’t say enough about the energy that emanates from Maria; it imbues her every word with so much comfort. She spoke so beautifully with us, for us, and about us during the ceremony. We were a little nervous about how our families (Catholic) would react to the service, but the praise has not stopped! Many have told us it was the most beautiful ceremony they had ever witnessed! Maria worked with us to make the ceremony perfect for us, but it’s not just the words- it’s how they are delivered, and she has an incredible gift in that regard. I will probably never stop singing Maria’s praises. I just feel so grateful that we found her, she helped us have the wedding ceremony better than we could’ve dreamed!
We had a great experience with Journeys of the Heart and our officiant Maria Odilia. My wife and I come from different religious traditions and we were looking for a officiant who could incorporate elements of both traditions and make our ceremony as inclusive as possible.
I believe we found Journeys of the Heart through Wedding Wire, and after we reached out they provided a list of several officiants likely available on our wedding date. We decided on Maria Odilia based on her website bio and a video we found somewhere of a ceremony she had officiated.
Maria Odilia reached out by email to set up an introductory phone call. Throughout the whole process she was professional, engaged, pleasant to work with, and very accommodating. She provided a sort of default script that she had put together with lots of options for elements of the ceremony – that was really helpful. We were probably towards the more involved end of the wedding-couple spectrum, wanting to have input on a lot of the specific language, and Maria Odilia had no problem with that and provided guidance along the way. We communicated mostly by email, with a couple FaceTime calls. By the time of the wedding we knew how the ceremony would go and felt that Maria Odilia had a good sense of who we were.
At the wedding, Maria Odilia was calm and prepared, set a warm, upbeat, festive tone, and really focused on making the ceremony about us. We couldn’t have been happier with the whole experience.
Our officiant was Maria Odilia Romeu and we could not have been happier with how she officiated our wedding (and also how she prepared us for our wedding day). My wife and I are both somewhat perfectionists – the type of people who research and read a hundred reviews before committing to anything – and we met with many officiants before working with Maria. What initially caught our attention was her warm, calming presence, and also her seriously organized and professional way of discussing wedding plans. That first impression became a lasting reality, leading all the way up to the wedding day. Maria made sure we were right on schedule every step of the way, from writing our personal stories, to writing our vows; and her calmness and eloquent demeanor really made our ceremony stress-free, I’d say even zen-like.
I think my favorite aspect to Maria’s style is how much effort she puts into personalizing the wedding story. She really took the time to get to know us, to craft and tell our story in a way that matched our personalities, was genuine, and provided just the right amount of humor. In other words, nothing felt “scripted”. In fact, so many of our guests described our ceremony as being “inspirational” and we have to give Maria full credit for that!
Something else that one of my groomsmen pointed out, and it’s very true: Maria makes the wedding about YOU, about the beloved couple. My best man said, “She gets out of the way,” and though that sounds funny, what he meant is she didn’t dominate the ceremony. The bride and groom is always the center of attention. I’ve noticed in a lot of weddings the officiant will be in the center and often the guests are paying more attention to the officiant than the bride and groom. Maria makes an effort to stand next to the couple (not between them) and holds the microphone up to them in such a way where it is not intrusive. I know this sounds a bit difficult to imagine (it is hard to explain without seeing it), but the point is that Maria does all she can to make the day YOUR special day.
I should mention that our wedding was somewhat spiritual, but non-denominational. Maria could clearly do any type of wedding – religious, spiritual, or not – and I think it would have the same inspiring, warm, and joyous vibe.
It’s been just over three months since our wedding and out of all the moments in the night, it’s the ceremony itself we keep going back to, keep remembering with nostalgia. It’s the most important part of the night — and I am so grateful we had Maria’s guidance and expertise. It was perfect, thanks to her.
Journeys of the Heart were involved with two best days of our lives. Our daughter Julia and husband Chris were married at Duke Sculpture Garden/Community Arts Center in Wallingford. Maria Odilia guided their beautiful ceremony with kindness and grace. We had no idea what was to be said by her, the bride or groom. We were so moved by her words and the flow of the event. She helped the couple expand their thoughts and feelings. The ceremony wasn’t too short or too long – it was perfect. At most weddings you only hear about the reception and setting. All of our guests were so moved by Maria and the couple themselves so giddy they skipped back down the aisle.
We knew Maria because she had married our son Adam and his lovely wife Carlie. This wedding was at the bride’s home in a golden field behind the house. Their wedding had been postponed twice due to covid. Maria kept everyone sane with all of the changes and disappointments. Here too, she found the right words to marry this couple who weren’t going to surrounded with all of their friends and family. It was 14 of us gathered to witness this important event. Carlie surprised everyone including Maria by announcing she and Adam were expecting a baby, due in January. Maria didn’t skip a beat.
I wish I had more children for her to marry.
Thank you Maria for being apart of our lives.