“We aren’t religious, but our parents and grandparents are. Could we have just a little bit of traditional religious ceremony aspects, without having it be a full-blown religious ceremony? Oh, and can you throw a handfasting in there too?”
“I’m Baptist. He’s Jewish. Can you perform a ceremony that incorporates a little of both faiths?”
“My fiancée is Vietnamese. One of their traditions is to have a tea ceremony honoring their ancestors and relatives. Can you perform a tea ceremony just before the exchange of rings?”
“We are an inter-racial couple. We’d like to make all our friends and family members feel welcome and comfortable. Can we use music in our ceremony that reflects everyone’s tastes? We’d like to dance down the aisle to a hip-hop tune, play a fun country song just after the “I Do” portion, and listen to some soft jazz playing in the background during the candle ceremony. Is that okay?”
These are typical of very common requests that couples make when discussing the vision for their ceremony with their officiant.
Couples come from all backgrounds, races, religions, and cultures these days, and each is unique, special and beautiful. They rightly want to incorporate their own unique traditions into their custom wedding ceremony, and professional officiants are happy to help them do so. Whether they are having a multi-cultural wedding, a mixed race wedding, an interfaith wedding, or any combination of traditions, a beautiful and meaningful ceremony can be written to accommodate it.
Combine and Connect Rituals
The traditional church wedding is not likely to accommodate most, or any, of these requests. In fact, this is often why couples try to find an officiant who is not only willing, but comfortable with ceremonies that are “Mixed Everything.”
The couple-to-be should stop and think about what has meaning to them and why. This is the key to what should be included. People who are Catholic may want to incorporate the sign of the cross, while their Jewish partner may want to break glass at the end of the ceremony. Wedding guests can choose to participate in various ceremony elements or not. It should always be respected that not everyone is comfortable with rituals of another religion. If some guests opt out of making the sign of the cross for example, that is completely acceptable.
Various rituals can be intertwined so that the result is a spiritual essence proving the interconnected threads of the many beliefs and traditions that humans have held for thousands of years.
The good news is that experienced officiants can create a personalized ceremony which is unique to the couple and guide them to a point where the couple will experience the elements that they hold dear. Officiants have written, arranged, and performed ceremonies for sometimes hundreds or thousands of unique combinations of cultures, races, and religions. Professional officiants are the experts and know how to fit the various elements together to make the flow of the ceremony perfect.
Your Wedding, Your Way
It is a wonderful thing when couples incorporate traditions and elements into their ceremony. The best advice is: it is YOUR wedding so you should have a ceremony that reflects YOU. Even vow renewals or commitment ceremonies should have all the elements that a couple holds dear.
Officiants often hear that a couple wants to add a religious element to a wedding to please a parent. It is a lovely consideration, and elements can be added to make that happen. Something as simple as a bible reading can add a beautiful tone to a ceremony that keeps everyone happy.
Choose The Right Officiant
Your job, as a couple, is to discuss all your needs with the officiant from the very first conversation with her. As long as the officiant is aware of what you need, she can create the ceremony of your dreams. And if someone isn’t willing or capable of doing so, find an officiant who is! The Officiant Directory lists officiants in your area, so search for the one who will be perfect for your particular situation.
Are you having a “Mixed Everything” ceremony? If so, choosing a professional officiant is the best decision you can make. They will understand what you want, know how to make it work, and will do all they can to make your day to be as special as you imagine it to be!