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What a load of old wank.

December 12, 2016

Last week I posted on Instagram about my wedding last September, where my wife and I drew names out of a hat mid-ceremony to determine who the witnesses would be for the signing. It was part of a larger point about shaping a ceremony the way you want, because it's your day.

 

I want to expand on it just a little, because after lurking on some celebrant forums this morning I'm kind of annoyed by the attitude of some of the celebrants commenting there (I might add, this isn't unusual for me). I've mentioned before that there are thousands of celebrants out there, each with their own individual style. This is awesome! Because there are thousands of couples ready to get married, also rocking their own flavour.

 

Today, I read something along the lines of, "My couple wants to move all the official signing stuff to be the last thing in the ceremony, after everything else has been completed and the guests have moved away. Can I do this?" Great question! The forums are a great place to get info from more experienced celebrants. So it was disappointing to see it met with howls of disapproval from some of the celebrants online.

"What are the couple thinking?"

"What's the point of that?"

I can only imagine the OP was completely befuddled by nearly 20 responses, almost without exception, telling her what a bad idea it was and how she could change her clients minds.

 

What a load of old wank.

 

If you have some ideas about how you want your ceremony to go, share them your celebrant. If they tell you your ideas aren't much chop - without a valid reason - find another celebrant.

 

Don't get me wrong, there are some legalities that MUST be adhered to. As the celebrant I need to identify myself to the guests and read the Monitum (which in itself contains some antiquated language that, in my opinion, should be revised to be more inclusive). The couple's full names must be said at some point, and they need to say the legally binding vows as specified in the Marriage Act - which are a whole, one sentence long. The 2 witnesses must be over 18 and capable of understanding what is said.

 

There's a general flow a ceremony takes as well. Some things must be done before others, like the Monitum being read sometime before the vows. 

 

But on the whole, a civil ceremony is SUPER flexible! That's kind of the point. You're not in a church following paint-by-numbers rituals.

 

You want the official signing to be the the very last thing done? Awesome.

 

You want your dog in a tutu, carrying in the rings? Kick arse!

 

You want to turn up on roller skates? Do it!

 

You want to give everyone a raffle ticket as they walk in and have a lucky door prize to pick witnesses? Outstanding!

 

Instead of having a reading, you want the guests to sing Hooked On A Feeling by Blue Swede? I f**king love it! I'll dress up as Groot!

 

After you're married and walking back down the aisle, you want the whole crowd to play kazoos to the tune of Always Look on the Bright Side of Life? I'll pay you to let me conduct your ceremony* 

(*please note - I will not pay you to conduct your ceremony)

 

 You get the idea.

 

There are heaps of traditions that surround a wedding ceremony. But they're not the law.

 

You don't have to have rings.

 

The celebrant doesn't have to ask the bride's dad if it's ok she gets married today.

 

The witnesses don't have to be the best man and the maid-of-honour. You don't even have to have a BM or MOH!

 

The groom doesn't have to read his vows first.

 

The bride doesn't have to stand on my right.

 

In conclusion super friends, just in case I haven't been clear - it's YOUR wedding day.

 

It's not the celebrant's day.

It's not your sister's day.

It's not your mum's day.

It's not your event manager's day.

It's your day. 

 

So do some homework.

Find a great celebrant.

And with them, build a ceremony that not only reflects who you are, but sets the tone for the rest of your day. 

 

Make it all yours.

 

(Edit - 13/12/2016)

 

Please don't think I'm against tradition, if that's what you're looking for.

 

That's the point. It's entirely about what you want. Traditional or not. Bells and whistles or simple AF. 

 

It's your day.

 

 

 

 

 

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