Author Archives: Lois Heckman

God’s Knot and other Unity Rituals

While it’s usually me suggesting the ideas, and that is, after all, my job – from time to time couples come to me with a request for a specific ritual for their wedding ceremony. Perhaps they saw or read about it somewhere.  There are many ways to find  this stuff, especially on the internet, whether Pinterest, Instagram […]

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Timing is Everything for your Wedding Day

Today’s column concerns something very practical, with two issues related to timing because, as they say, ‘timing is everything.’  The concerns are: the gap between the ceremony and reception, and the time involved in a receiving line. Both of these topics impact your guests’ experience because standing around doing nothing is not fun. If you […]

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What is the UU? Who are Unitarians?

After writing this column for many years, sometimes I feel as if I’ve already written about every religion and cultural tradition, but of course that’s not possible. Not even close.According to some estimates there are roughly 4,200 religions and 195 countries in the world. That should keep me going! But I try to focus on traditions and cultures that […]

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Advice for a better ceremony experience

I don’t alwayswrite about religion, ritual and culture, although I find it so fascinating. This is, after all, a wedding column and in that spirit I have advice to offer. These suggestions are based on officiating countless weddings, and the focus here is on the ceremony, my area of expertise – so here goes: Guests: don’t […]

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Rituals are Everywhere

What?? She’s writing about rituals again? Yes I am, because rituals are a way to express something without words. A ritual can certainly express what your marriage commitment means to you and be a way to honor your culture or family. It might connect with your interests and values. Religious ceremonies are full of rituals, […]

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Non-denominational? Secular? Sorting it all out.

When looking for someone to officiate their wedding, many couples  are not only unfamiliar with the terminology but may not be sure what they are actually seeking. Let me try to sort it out. I often get requests for a non-denominational ceremony. After exploring this with the couple I discover what they actually want is a […]

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Quaker Values Stand the Test of Time

Sometimes I write about silly things in this column, but I also often write about religion, culture and ritual and explore how traditions might pertain to weddings. One important religion I have not written about yet (after all these years) is the Society of Friends, or Quakers. They are especially important to us here in […]

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Hey, is this a good idea?

Today’s column – not religion, not culture nor traditions. I can’t be so serious all the time!  Because I spend a lot of time on the internet, especially concerning weddings, I was thinking about how overwhelming it can be. There are so many ideas ‘out there’ – advice, cute ideas, you can easily get turned around. When […]

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The Road to Truth Can Vary

If you have even the slightest interest or knowledge of Judaism you most likely know the three major branches: Orthodox, Conservative and Reform. But did you know about Reconstructionist Judaism? This is a great example of how religion can evolve – although sometimes it seems as if it never will. Interestingly Israeli Jews are grouped into […]

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Words Matter

‘I now pronounce you man and wife.’  Nope. That’s not correct. The equivalent of man is woman and the equivalent of wife is husband – so for a man and women getting married the correct pronouncement is: ‘I now pronounce you husband and wife.’Or perhaps ‘wife and husband,’ and if that sounds odd to you, it […]

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