Religious Ceremony Verses Non

Religious ceremony verses non religious have a similar structure.  What makes them unique is the readings, vow and ring exchange or songs that may or may not contain references to the couples faith, god or a creator.

Religious ceremony verses non religious, this is a question that many couples discuss and then ask specifically for either one. But in my experience of meeting couples, and knowing what happens during a celebrant led ceremony; what surprises me, is that I haven´t noticed a huge difference between the two? In a celebrant ceremony it´s possible to please both partners although they have different beliefs, religious or spiritual. In this blog I will talk about the ways I have included and omitted religion in my ceremonies. You can decide which one is right for you to create a memorable ceremony.

We´d like a religious or non religious ceremony

Wedding couples anonymous

What´s often included in a religious ceremony verses non religious

Lets start with what´s often included in a celebrant religious ceremony verses non religious. Couples are very different and no two ceremonies will ever be the same. And that´s how it should be right. Some couples ask if they can have a prayer read before the wedding ceremony gets in flow. However, others choose readings that have references to their faith and god. For some couples it´s important to include a religious ritual, as such offering a diverse format each time.

As an Independent celebrant I am happy to officiate religious or non religious ceremonies and have lots of tips for both. This is an essential question that couples should ask celebrants they are looking to hire depending on their preference.

Religious verses non religious – couples love story

In a religious or non religious celebration, couples may choose to share their love story with family and friends. The structure is essentially the same but may include several references to god or a creator. The story can include references to how the couple believe their creator contributed to their paths crossing and subsequent relationship. Whilst narrating the couples love story it´s important to reveal it in a way that has specific meaning to them.

I love the variation that religious and non religious ceremonies bring

Marcia Bravo Celebrant

Readings, songs or quotes

In a non religious wedding ceremony couples often include readings like poems or literature. In addition, the couples song is often played for their entrance or exit. Quotes that resonate with the couple are fused into the ceremony script. Consequently in a similar manner to a religious ceremony. It´s also possible to include your faith in a ceremony in other ways whether that be with a gospel choir singing celebrating god. In a religious ceremony I celebrate the couples faith, whilst enabling guests who may be non religious to feel included and comfortable.

Exchange of vows religious verses non religious

The exchange of religious vows verses non religious is that the first may be of cultural or spiritual importance . It represents a commitment rooted in faith and devotion. These vows reflect a shared belief system and often involve promises to uphold religious values, principles, and traditions within the marriage. On the contrary, non-religious vows offer a more worldly approach, focusing on personal values, love, and commitments. Furthermore these vows often reflect and celebrate the couples individuality, shared goals and their promises. With couples making promises to each other without any religious references. Ultimately, the choice between religious and non-religious vows is a deeply personal one, emulating the couples’ beliefs, values and commitments they wish to make on their special day.

Exchange of rings

The exchange of rings at a religious verses non religious ceremony has similar facets, the difference is in the wording that couples choose. Some couples choose words that have references to god, their faith and or commitments during their marriage. The words may be spoken by the celebrant or by the couples depending on their preferences. For example a celebrant might say to the couple in a non religious ceremony:

Wedding rings are made precious by our wearing them. Your rings say that even in your uniqueness you have chosen to be bound together. Let these rings also be a sign that love has substance as well as soul, a present as well as a past, and that, despite its occasional sorrows, love is a circle of happiness, wonder, and delight. May these rings remind you always of the vows you have taken here today.

Or a couple in a religious ceremony might say to each other:

“This ring I give you, in token and pledge of our constant faith and abiding love.”

Including a ritual in the ceremony

In a religious ceremony verses a non religious ceremony a symbolic ritual adds extra dynamics and interest to the ceremony.  In addition, it increases the connection between the couple and any family and friends as they create something together.  Many rituals suit both ceremonies perfectly such as a hand-tying, jumping the broom or a sand blending ceremony for instance.  What´s more a unity candle ritual with a modern twist is a great for ceremonies where one partner is religious.

To sum up

In conclusion, a religious ceremony verses non, can have a similar structure that flows throughout the ceremony. They can include readings, songs, poems and live performances, the difference being references to god their faith or a creator. Couple´s choosing either type can exchange vows and exchange rings, if that´s their preference. Equally both can be dynamic, fun and keep guests talking for some time afterwards. Whichever is your preference, ultimately its a deeply personal decision to be embraced.

Are you planning a religious or non religious ceremony in Spain, Lisbon or the UK in 2024 or 2025, I´d love to hear your story?

Let me help you take your dreams from paper to reality creating memories that last a lifetime.

Hope to see you soon.

M xxx

Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

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