Spirit-oriented Wedding Ceremony
What does it mean to have a Spirit-oriented wedding ceremony?
Is there a difference between Spirit-oriented and a religious wedding ceremony?
Examining the difference
Spirit-oriented wedding ceremonies embrace the personal relationship a couple has with nature, or a mystical power. Jesus, Father, and Lord are replaced by the words Spirit, Creator, Infinite Intelligence, Father/Mother God, or Universe.
When someone tells me they are Spirit-oriented, I know they mean their relationship between their being and Spirit is personal, and there’s no pre-determined behavior that is expected.
They can be casual or more formal. The ceremony pictured here was from a very nature-oriented couple but they also had a traditional feel.
By pre-determined I’m referring to whether a person formally prays every day, attends church or a synagogue, and they have a religious text they study or use.
Religious wedding ceremonies involve specific beliefs, behavior, dress, and terminology. Jesus, Lord, Heavenly Father, or God are the terms most preferred in a religious ceremony. They can also involve involved prayer and the officiant wears a stole (like a long scarf that hands over the dress) or a robe.
How do I at Northern Michigan Wedding Officiants create a Spirit-oriented ceremony?
First, I find out where you’re coming from. I have no judgment one way or the other. So I simply ask you what your orientation is. Are you non-religious, secular or spiritually motivated? I may also ask if you come from a religious family, and how you feel about this.
Many couples want to honor their family who are religious, but prefer not to have a lot of religious language. When I create your ceremony, the focus is on your love, what your definition of commitment is, and what you value most about each other.
There are a number of fun and (I think) interesting questions I ask you at our planning meeting that help me determine what matters most to you, and how your relationship with Spirit informs your life.
My couples never have my religious or spiritual beliefs forced on them.
To Pray or not to Pray in the Spirit-oriented wedding ceremony
Every in-love duo I officiate for has the option to include a prayer or not, which I offer most often after you share your vows. My intention is to not pitch Spirit outside of us, but is an inner presence that is the love that you have found and continues to evolve. This joining prayer can bridge the gap between religious family members, and a Spirit-oriented couple. I don’t attempt to convert anyone with the prayer which seems to be a focus of many religious prayers.
You can have an idea of the content of the prayer because you can have it in our planning meeting.
I also don’t wear a stole or robe. Although I was ordained in seminary, my religious days are behind me. Religion can be beautiful unless there is dogma that tries to take away a person’s right to choose the way he or she lives their life, or is promotes violence. Sadly, these days, this happens.
What if you want a religious ceremony?
How will I create a religious wedding ceremony? This happens basically the same way I create a Spirit-oriented ceremony but with the religious language you desire. Your preferred scriptures are included in your wedding address. If a family member wants to lead the Lord’s Prayer instead of me, I’m very supportive. Using the Lord’s Prayer is not expected, but is a favorite of my devout couples.
Religious couples can add a Unity Christian Cross Ceremony, Candle Lighting, or foot washing. I don’t offer communion.
Spirit-oriented or religious, as your officiant, what makes your heart open and sing is what I’m after. As I always say, you’re not boring, why should your ceremony be boring?
What your ceremony will do, is reflect what’s important to you, not be boring and will delight you and your guests. Truly. Read my reviews on the Knot.
Where are you coming from?
Do you prefer a Spirit-oriented wedding ceremony? Or a more religious wedding ceremony? Either way — Let’s start a conversation. I’m happy to answer your questions and will not pressure you one way or the other. I’ve written about this before so you may want to check out this post: Are You Spiritual or Religious?
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