Author Archives: Lois Heckman

Sami Weddings and other traditions

I recently wrote about expectations for my Arctic/Northern Lights trip. I’m back now and have some cool things to report. Unfortunately, I did not get to see the aurora – there are no guarantees you will see the phenomena, and that’s just how it goes sometimes. But I did have some other wonderful experiences, and [...]

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An arctic wedding anyone?

Unusual wedding destinations are always a hot topic. As you read this, I’m on my way to the arctic to try to see the Northern Lights. I can’t help but imagine how magical it would be to have a wedding with the aurora borealislighting the sky. We can certainly file that under unique venues! Locations for [...]

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The Power of Music

Whatever you select for ceremony music, it will add beauty and joy to your wedding day. Aldous Huxley said, ‘After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music.’

And Leonard Bernstein wisely said: ‘Music can name the un-nameable and communicate the unknowable.’

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I do, do you? Three essential elements of a wedding ceremony.

It is commonly accepted practice (although it is not the law) that there are three elements a wedding ceremony should contain: The asking, the vows, and the pronouncement. Signing the marriage license another piece of the puzzle, of course, and truly the only legallyrequired part, at least in Pennsylvania, where I practice. Personally, I would never [...]

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When tragedy strikes

Today’s topic isn’t the most pleasant or uplifting, but it is important. And I am well aware that I have been accused of often being ‘too serious.’ Is that a bad thing? But here’s what I want to talk about, in light of recent events: What happens if just before your wedding a local, state, [...]

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RITUAL ROUND-UP

How to Choose Symbols and Rituals to Enhance Your Ceremony As regular readers of this space know, I love rituals, symbols and traditions. I love the history and meaning as well as changing and updating them as well. Today is a ritual round up! As couples continue to want a wedding ceremony that reflects who [...]

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When the officiant is an after-thought

If your ceremony is important to you, and in my way of thinking, nothing is more central to the wedding than the wedding ceremony… you know, the part where you are actually getting married, then don’t balk at a high celebrant fee that is still probably one of the smallest parts of your budget.

When your officiant is an after-thought you are short changing yourself. The opportunity to have a real, meaningful and unique ceremony creates one of life’s best moments. Isn’t that what you want for your wedding?

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Making the Most of Wedding Ceremony Readings

Including a reading or two in a wedding ceremony is quite a common practice. I explore this routinely with couples because it can be a wonderful way to honor a special friend or family member while imparting wisdom.  Often in a church ceremony, passages from scriptures are read by someone the couple chooses. It might even [...]

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The Evolution of Tradition

Traditions and customs change and evolve over the years. It’s true for most things and for weddings as well. I recently wrote about how some ancient customs were connected to fertility and survival in the ‘rain on your wedding day’ column. But if we go back only a few hundred years ago, or less, we [...]

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A Humanist Approach to Weddings

In a ceremony without any strict religious dogma, without prayers or scriptural readings, blessings or pronouncements about God, a Humanist approach can help express the couple’s values. Through their wedding ceremony they can declare to family and friends that they, too, are good people, who share values such as kindness, caring for others, and doing good in the world, just like their religious fellow humans.

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    Lois Heckman

    Lois Heckman is a certified Life-Cycle Celebrant who officiates at weddings, funerals, and other ceremonies in the Poconos and beyond. She has performed hundreds of ceremonies and brings a wealth of knowledge to her work. Visit her website: ... Read Full
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