Meaningful Rites For Non-Religious Marriage Ceremonies

Meaningful Rites For Non-Religious Marriage Ceremonies

When a couple begins planning for their wedding ceremony, they will be looking for ways to make it meaningful. If you are being married in a religious ceremony, it is quite easy, as the time-honored rites and rituals will already be in place. Couples who prefer to have a secular service, however, will have to make their own choices about what to include in their ceremony. These are some ideas on how to add meaningful rites to a non-religious marriage ceremony.

One way that many couples decide to make their ceremony personal is by writing their own vows. This can be a wonderful way to express your love for your intended, as well as a chance to talk about just what it is that you find so special about your bride or groom. If you do not have a way with words, you can always turn to beautiful verses of poetry to make your feelings known. When in doubt, keep your vows brief, and always keep them in good taste.

There are a number of rituals that can be included in a wedding ceremony that are not based on any one particular faith. The unity candle is a popular symbolic rite that many brides and grooms choose to have as a part of their marriage ceremony. Each person will hold one candle, which they will use to simultaneously light the flame on another larger candle, representing the idea of two becoming one. The unity candle can also symbolize the flames of love, which only increases its appeal.

Some couples like to include their friends and families in the service. At one non-religious wedding that I attended, each guest was given a copy of the bride and groom’s favorite poem. The entire group read it aloud together (it was a fairly small wedding), which was a wonderful way to include everyone assembled in the marriage ceremony. These types of rituals affirm the idea that a married couple is part of a greater community, and that the community affirms that it will support the marriage. It can be quite moving.

Often in second marriages, there are children from a previous relationship. Designing special rituals that include the bride and groom’s children is an excellent idea. Inviting the children to join the bride and groom at some point during the ceremony can be a very special moment. One idea is for the couple to jointly present the children with gifts of wedding jewelry that symbolize their union as a family, much as the exchange of rings between the bride and groom symbolizes that they are being joined as one. Gifts such as lockets with family photos are particularly appropriate for these symbolic wedding jewelry gifts.

When you are looking for non-religious rituals to include in your wedding, don’t forget to research the customs in your heritage. Many nationalities and ethnic groups have special rites that they traditionally include in marriage ceremonies. One of the best known examples of this would be the jumping of the broom that is often a part of African-American weddings. Once you begin looking, you will find that there are all sorts of wonderful customs that can be included in your wedding to give even more meaning to a very special day.