I recently saw the following posted in a Facebook group for brides-to-be from a recent bride.
"Sidenote for all the brides-to-be: We did some things for our wedding that were less traditional than most- and we did have family members question us or even judge us along the way. Remember that it's your day!!! Chop that train off if you want, have your dogs in your ceremony, buy Aldi wine- do whatever makes you happy! Your wedding is the first chance you have to show the world who you are as a couple, don't be afraid to make it unique! Your guests will have fun and you'll be glad that you went with your instincts- I sure was!"
This sentiment was also echoed to me by a recent groom at a wedding rehearsal this past week. He and his bride chose to do a themed wedding and had received a lot of push-back for doing something different than the expected norm.
I can't agree any more wholeheartedly that your ceremony is a reflection of who you are as a couple, and not as an individual or relative of anyone in particular. When you marry, the two of you will create a life together that is individualized. Why not start with your ceremony?
Do your vows promise what you really feel you can promise and want to say on that special day? Does your ceremony reflect what you believe spiritually? Does it represent why you fell in love, and what draws/keeps you together?
Today there are many ways to make your ceremony your own. Even if you both have very different spiritual beliefs, your ceremony can bring your families together rather than divide them.
Do the two of you love Star Wars, the Rat Pack era, or the Packers but still want a spiritual ceremony that draws together two different faiths? No problem. It can be done and with class! All it takes is a little creativity and an officiant that understands the different religious traditions you wish to bring together.
In the alternative, perhaps you want that traditional ceremony with your union spiritually blessed, but your minister/rabbi/imam is unable to perform a ceremony outside their congregation's location. That can be done as well. What you need to find is someone who has been seminary-trained and formally ordained and who can perform ceremonies virtually anywhere. The reason they need to be seminary-trained and formally ordained is because they are the only ones whose credentials give them the spiritual authority to bless your union so that your marriage is accepted in almost all churches, synagogues and temples.
So dare to dream! Knowing what you share as a couple, what defines you, and what glue holds you together is a strength that can carry you far in your relationship. Expressing it on your wedding day is a way to celebrate it!
Have questions? I'm happy to answer them for you!
Rev. Ronnie was ordained in 2010 as an interfaith minister through The New Seminary, located in New York City. She is available to perform ceremonies throughout the United States, aboard ship or in other countries.