The Place of “Rituals” in your Wedding Ceremony
One of the resource documents we give to every couple we work with is simply titled “Rituals”. Over the years, this has steadily grown to include rituals from various cultures. The idea is that this is a unique way to pull in to a ceremony traditions that symbolize the unity of marriage.
Many couple ask if it is something they have to include in their ceremony. The answer of course to that is “No”. But if you decide to feature a ritual in your ceremony, here are a few tips:
One of the oldest traditions is the lighting of the unity candle. We could write a book about Unity Candle disasters when conducting outdoor weddings. If your wedding is outdoors, realize that there are no guarantees that the candle lighting can actually be done when the wind is blowing. Several times we’ve had to take it inside and have it done during the reception. Then there is the superstition of what it means if the candle blows out.
Consider some of the other options. One that is quickly replacing the unity candle is the blending of sand. I recently had a wedding where the grooms family brought sand from Washington State to be mixed with the bride’s sand from the Atlantic shore.
Another one we use a lot, particularly with weddings in a vineyard is the variations on either the mixing of wine, the wine ceremony or the German inspired wine sharing ritual.
When it comes to traditions from other cultures, we are always inspired and appreciative of how different cultures symbolize the significance of marriage. I have had the privilege this past month of celebrating two weddings where the ancient Persian custom of the Sofreh Aghd (Wedding spread) is featured.
Whatever your background, be assured that there is a tradition or ritual that can be included to make your ceremony unique and fun. We’ll gladly help you figure out how to include it in your own special ceremony.