Are you ‘Celebrant’ aware?
Most of us are confused about what a Celebrant does. A Celebrant is someone who creates a personalised ceremony for a special occasion.
When you have something to celebrate, the Celebrant works with you to create your very own unique ceremony which can include, a wedding, a naming day, renewal of vows, adoption, achievements, retirement, a reunion and much more.
The most confusion occurs surrounding a wedding and the use of a Celebrant. One of the first things to decide when you plan your wedding is what kind of ceremony you might like to have; and these days there are so many options to consider, yet most couples aren’t even aware of the choices!
You can now decide whether you wish to have a Church Wedding, a Registrar Marriage, a Humanist Service, a Spiritualist Service or a Celebrant Ceremony on your wedding day.
Many couples now opt to legalise their marriage prior to the wedding day in what is known as a ‘Statutory Ceremony.’ This is a basic legal ceremony held at a local HSE, register office for a fee, where the couple (with two witnesses) make their required legal declarations and sign the marriage register. For Northern Ireland, couples need to contact the Registrar of the council district in which the ceremony will be registered. This option then allows the couple to have a more personal or bespoke ceremony in any location on the wedding day itself with an independent Professional Celebrant who is not governed by any legal restriction, officiating the ceremony. This method allows you to make your wedding day completely your own.
Professional Celebrant Ceremony
Here’s where the fun really begins! And in comes……..Meaningful Moments! A popular growing choice amongst couples planning their wedding day is to opt for an independent celebrant to officiate the ceremony.
A celebrant is an individual who is trained to provide you with a custom-made ceremony designed to celebrate your union in a way which is meaningful and appropriate to you and your choices for your wedding and way of life. A celebrant is not restricted in any way by religion or law, which means that your ceremony can include absolutely anything you wish! Some couples may opt to use a celebrant to incorporate an element of spiritual symbolism in their ceremony, such a Hand Fasting or any ceremony involving symbolic elements such as candles, sand, water, crystals, trees etc … the options are endless!
Some may wish to include a relevant tradition important to their family or cultural heritage, such as a Chinese Tea Ceremony, a Jewish Glass Smash, a religious blessing, or anything else which is meaningful to you. You might even wish to start your own.
Celebrants pride themselves on working very closely with their couples to get to know them before their big day and to design, create and deliver a ceremony which is bespoke to them. Even if you opt to have a very traditional service, a celebrant will still aim to get to know you and ask questions about your relationship, to be able to share an element of, Your Love Story, Your Way on Your Day!
You can also choose to write your own vows, exchange wedding rings, and involve guests in giving readings – or you can do something different altogether. It’s completely up to you! Being unrestricted by law, a Celebrant can conduct your ceremony in any location - indoors or outdoors - and in any venue - public or private - anywhere in the world; whether or not your venue holds a license for marriage. The only down-side? A celebrant cannot legally marry you, so for your marriage to be recognised by law you must also register your marriage in a legal ceremony either before or after the wedding day. This can be done very easily and for a fee with the HSE. (click here for more information).
Some couples may ask, “Will my ceremony still feel like a ‘real wedding’?” and all celebrants will argue that – “yes, of course it will!” A Celebrant ceremony is quite possibly one of the most personal and truly beautiful ways you can opt to make your marriage commitment, and the majority of the time the guests don’t even realise the difference…. they’re too busy enjoying the moment you smile and say “I do!”. In a lot of cases, the guests make emotional comments accompanied by, “I wish I had done it this way”.
- Length of ceremony: It’s up to you! But anywhere between 20 – 40 minutes is recommended.
- Cost: All celebrants will offer their own fee, but with all professionally trained members of The Irish Celebrants Association, the cost starts at €450 and rises depending on person and location.
So, what are you waiting for? Now you know more about the role of the Celebrant, hopefully you can feel a little bit clearer about deciding if this is right for you, I may be biased, but I know which one I would go for!