Most people assume that a wedding is either a religious affair (which involves following the regular marriage service liturgy) or a register office ceremony (following a standard non-religious script). Both are standardised and scarcely, if at all, personalised.
By the way, I have nothing at all against religious weddings. That’s how my wife and I married, and it was exactly what we wanted.
Register office ceremonies may be all that certain people want, and I’m fine with that.
But what if religion isn’t really your thing? What if you’re ‘marrying out’ and your church won’t let you have a full service? What if you don’t want the formulaic ceremony of the register office, but want something bespoke?
Then, of course, the civil celebrant can offer you something special that can tick all your boxes.
But it isn’t legal, is it?
According to current legislation, every wedding needs to be legally registered (which is where a registrar comes in).
If you want a personalised ceremony, this needn’t be a problem. Just go down to the register office (at a pre-arranged time) with two witnesses, get legally married and then have the wedding ceremony that YOU want in front of your guests at a place YOU choose.
If you’re marrying in a licensed venue, you can be a little creative – why not have the registrar’s part done first (even in a different room!) before enjoying the festive part in front of all your guests, relaxed and joyous?
So what’s “personalised” about it?
By definition, no two personalised weddings will be the same! However, this is how the finished product may be arrived at.
After an initial chat of maybe an hour, the civil celebrant will have given you a few ideas, explored your wishes and learnt a bit about you and your story.
“Breaking the Glass” ritual
Depending on what you choose, you can include readings that reflect your personal beliefs (prayers, poems, prose) and control who reads and who participates. Any procession and/or recessional, music, rituals – all can be chosen by you to make a memorable and meaningful ceremony for YOU – and your guests.
Your wedding is probably the biggest, most significant day of your life, so surely it makes sense for you to be able to choose how, where and with whom you celebrate it!
Ask Michael for more information.
Photos courtesy of www.lyndseygoddard.com