Tag Archives: rituals

Variations on a Theme

There is an interesting intersection of the many customs and rituals of weddings. One with surprising commonalities is the African-American ‘jumping the broom’ and the Celtic ‘jumping the oak branch’. But today I want to talk about a tradition used in wedding ceremonies in Spain, Latin American countries, and the Philippines:The ‘arras’ or 13 Coins, sometimes even [...]

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When Actions Speak Louder…

I write a lot about customs and rituals; why am I always going on about this? What does it even mean, and why is it important? Rituals are actions and words that are performed repeatedly and represent something specific. Something as simple as walking down the aisle at a wedding is a ritual. Symbols are [...]

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Vows among the bow-wows!!!

There’s a new puppy in my life. Louie is 12 weeks old now and a ton of fun, joy, and work. There’s no doubt about it, I’m a dog person. Louie brings our total to three fantastic English Springer Spaniels. So I figured this was a good time to talk about dogs in weddings. I [...]

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Navigating Interfaith Weddings

According to the Pew Research Center almost four-in-ten Americans (39%) who have married since 2010 have a spouse who is in a different religious group. I often officiate interfaith weddings – it is one of my favorite types of ceremonies to create. When two (or more) faiths come together, the ceremony needs to blend them in an equal and respectful way.

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The Power of Ritual

[I]t is a scientific fact that ritual helps us through milestones, especially grief and loss. Norton, an associate professor in Marketing at Harvard Business School, says “we see in every culture, and throughout history, that people who perform rituals report feeling better.” Not a surprise, at least to me!

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How to add spice to your ceremony

The spice ritual is pretty easy to understand – you simply choose different spices to represent the different people participating – in this case the bride and groom and their children. Learning something about each person and finding the herb or spice that related those traits is the key. Poetic license is required, of course.

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Rituals are the language of ceremony

Using meaningful, spiritual, or even fun or unusual rituals in your wedding is one good way to express what your commitment means to you. Religious ceremonies are full of rituals, which are specific to their faith traditions. The Stations of the Cross, Confession, Communion, Shabbat candles, as well as prayers or songs are all good [...]

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Expanding on the tradition of rings

I find myself reminding people that the ceremony is the heart and soul of any wedding, and I hope I am helping couples find ways to make their wedding not only a fun celebration, but also a reflection of their love and commitment. Sharing unusual or special ideas for weddings is a way to point [...]

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Highlights from 2012

In the spirit of end-of-the-year columns I want to share some highlights from this, my eighth year as a Celebrant. I officiated a wedding in the little schoolhouse in Hickory Run State Park; the couple had their first date at the park and having the ceremony where they shared many good times was meaningful and [...]

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Tokens of Love for your Wedding Day

As couples become more interested in creating wedding ceremonies that reflect who they are, they are incorporating symbols as a visible sign of their love.  These ‘tokens of love’ enable you to take the invisible and intangible – your love and devotion for one another – and illustrate these feelings in symbolism.  Here are some [...]

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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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