Category Archives: Ceremonies and Celebrations

Remarriage – How to handle 2nd or 3rd Weddings

People often ask what’s appropriate for a second or even third wedding. The short answer is: anything you want.  At least 40% of today’s weddings involve at least one partner who has been married before.* The stigma of divorce is, thankfully, long past. And the hope of what is to come is always cause for [...]

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Puzzles, Pretzel and Pebbles… what could they possibly have in common?

Ritual: A sequence of activities involving gestures, words, and objects, performed in a special place, and performed in a specific sequence. Rituals exist across cultures, time, traditions and religions. Rituals are a feature known to all human societies. Readers of this column know how much I love ritual and how important I feel it is [...]

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A beautiful Indian tradition…

I recently had a bride of Indian heritage ask me about using the ‘dot’ on the forehead for her wedding ceremony. I knew a bit about this but realized it was time to learn more and, of course, share it in this column. The dot, popular in India, is called a ‘bindi’ coming from the [...]

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Do you need a wedding program?

About every year or so I tweak and repost this column. Why? Because everyone planning a wedding eventually comes to this question: should I have a ceremony program? As the big day approaches I sometimes hear from ‘my’ couples, asking for the ‘order of service.’ I know immediately why. They are creating a program and [...]

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Planning an engagement or wedding? Ask yourself this…

I adore weddings, but I do take all of the hoopla of both engagements and weddings with a healthy grain of salt. Becoming engaged is a special time in one’s life. Enjoy it to the max, because making a serious commitment to another person is truly profound. Savor these moments. But (you knew there would [...]

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The Strong Symbolism of Water

Recently I wrote about the symbolism of the circle, noting how such a basic and simple thing – a circle – can express so much meaning. I also wrote about the box ritual – again, simple idea, but with great significance. The same, and more, can be said about water. All cultures, religions and traditions [...]

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Stories are the Heart of Ceremony

Life is a series of stories, and stories are a way we learn, remember and connect with one another. They are how we teach our children and how we grow as adults. In an earlier time, Grimm’s fairytales scared children to make them behave, today we read our kids stories to help them develop empathy, [...]

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A wedding ritual for your future

Looking for the perfect ritual for your wedding ceremony? There are those candles, the sand ceremony, hand-fasting, and many, many religious, spiritual and secular ways to symbolize your joining up together. But there is one in particular that moves with you into your future. Sometimes the simplest ideas are the best – this one of [...]

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Realistic Expectations for Your Wedding Day

Many engaged couples dream of a perfect wedding. For some women it’s a fairy-tale come true based on childhood fantasies and desires mixed in with lots of media hype. And while there’s nothing wrong with planning your dream-come-true wedding event, it is important to temper your expectations with some realism. Imagining a day that is [...]

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Jumping the Broom

There are many interesting historic and symbolic ideas connected to the ritual known as ‘Jumping the Broom.’ The story that slaves invented this ritual is common, but we now understand that it was actually a custom brought here by enslaved Africans. Historians are not in complete agreement, but most agree that Jumping the Broom dates [...]

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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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