Creative, Loving, & Personalized Wedding Ceremonies
Rev. Lorraine Simone
Interfaith Minister & Non-Denominational Wedding Officiant
A non-denominational ceremony uses generic religious wedding elements, rituals, prayers & traditions that are typically common to all Catholic, as well as other Judo-Chrisitan denominations. Ceremonies are “spiritual” by virtue of evoking a sacred or divine feeling in a very specific way-by focusing on the essence of the couple’s sense of morality values & fulfillment that emphasizes a spiritual approach to love & life.
- Baby Blessing
- Bonding & Commitment Ceremonies
- Memorial Services
- Renewal of Vows
- Memorial Services
- Crossing Over Ceremonies
- Graduation Celebrations
- Coming of Age Celebrations
- House Blessing
The Rose Ceremony
The Rose Ceremony is simple yet profoundly moving. The bride and groom exchange two red roses, symbolizing the giving and receiving of their love for each other throughout their entire married life. The Rose Ceremony also conveys how to use the rose and its symbolism in difficult times in order to forgive each other.
“Your gift to each other for your wedding today has been your wedding rings – which shall always be an outward demonstration of your vows of love and respect; and a public showing of your commitment to each other.
You now have what remains the most honorable title which may exist between a man and a woman – the title of “husband” and “wife.” For your first gift as husband and wife, that gift will be a single rose.
In the past, the rose was considered a symbol of love and a single rose always meant only one thing – it meant the words “I love you.” So it is appropriate that for your first gift – as husband and wife – that gift would be a single rose.
Please exchange your first gift as husband and wife. In some ways it seems like you have not done anything at all. Just a moment ago you were holding one small rose – and now you are holding one small rose. In some ways, a marriage ceremony is like this. In some ways, tomorrow is going to seem no different than yesterday. But in fact today, just now, you both have given and received one of the most valuable and precious gifts of life one I hope you always remember – the gift of true and abiding love within the devotion of marriage.
Jennifer and William, I would ask that where ever you make your home in the future – whether it be a large and elegant home – or a small and graceful one – that you both pick one very special location for roses; so that on each anniversary of this truly wonderful occasion you both may take a rose to that spot both as a recommitment to your marriage – and a recommitment that THIS will be a marriage based upon love.
In every marriage there are times where it is difficult to find the right words. It is easiest to hurt who we most love. It is easiest to be most hurt by who we most love. It might be difficult some time to words to say “I am sorry” or “I forgive you”; “I need you” or “I am hurting”. If this should happen, if you simply can not find these words, leave a rose at that spot which both of you have selected – for that rose than says what matters most of all and should overpower all other things and all other words.
That rose says the words: “I still love you.” The other should accept this rose for the words which cannot be found, and remember the love and hope that you both share today.
Jennifer and William if there is anything you remember of this marriage ceremony, it is that it was love that brought you here today, it is only love which can make it a glorious union, and it is by love which your marriage shall endure.”
The Water Blessing Ceremony
These are the hands of your best friend. Strong and full of love and respect for you. They are holding yours on your wedding day, as you promise to love each other eternally. These hands will love and cherish you through the years. And with the slightest touch, will comfort you like no other. These hands will wipe the tears from your eyes. These hands will help you to build and nurture your two families as one. We ask the lord to bless these hands and this new union with this water. And even when wrinkled and aged, we know that Ben and Sylvia will still be reaching for each other. And still giving each other the same unspoken tenderness respect and trust.
The Sand Ceremony
“To symbolize the uniqueness of the two people within the marriage, and the joining of their two lives into one entity, three layers of sand will now be poured into a vase.”
#1) the first layer of sand symbolizes that the new marriage is grounded by their spiritual love.”
Love is the eternal force of life. Love is the force that allows us to face fear with courage.
#2) the second layer symbolizes that the marriage is based on the strength of the individuals.”
Cherish, grow and affirm your differences. And although you will be sharing one life, never forget you are two separate souls.
#3) and this final layer symbolizes that your two lives are now joined together as one.
Together you will laugh and cry, share and grow. Love and respect each other always.
The Tree /Seed Planting Ceremony
The Tree/Seed Planting Ceremony is simple yet profoundly moving. The bride and groom select a tree or seedlings to plant in a pot, to be transplanted at a later date, or in the ground to symbolize their growing love and the power of setting deep roots of commitment for their lives together.
A Tree Planting or Seed Exchange Ceremony would be a powerful affirmation of love for each other and respect for the earth.
Like the language of flowers, trees have come to symbolize certain traits. By their very nature, trees represent longevity and withstanding the test of time. The mighty oak says your love is firmly planted on the ground while the birch tree strips away all pretentiousness.
Care should be taken to choose a tree or bush that is native to your area that will thrive in the environment you place it. If you do not have property of your own to plant it, check with a local park or other recreation area that you frequent or even the property of a beloved parent or friend. This ceremony will not only be a special bond for the people being wed but also serve to bring the entire family closer together as they support the couple in honoring the earth.
The ground should be prepared before the ceremony (especially if the couple doesn’t want to muss their wedding clothes). The rite could even be performed before or after the wedding if preferred.
As with the rose ceremony, the clergy person can remind the couple of their enduring love which will grow and mature as represented by the tree/seeds.
Wedding: Breaking of the glass to me
The breaking of the glass at the end of a wedding ceremony serves to remind us of two very important aspects of a marriage.
The Bride and Groom and everyone should consider these marriage vows as permanent and final as the breaking of this glass is unchangeable.
But, the breaking of the glass is also a warning of the fragility of a marriage. That sometimes a single thoughtless act, breech of trust or infidelity can damage a marriage in ways that are very difficult to undo – just as it would be so difficult to undo the breaking of the glass.
Knowing that this marriage is permanent, the Bride and Groom should strive to show each other the love and respect befitting their spouse and love of their life.
Groom smashes it! All shout: Mazeltov!
Do It Yourself Jewish Wedding Glass Ideas
Any glass may be used for the Jewish wedding glass, although most couples choose a special glass to be broken and kept. It is commonly wrapped in a cloth napkin (to avoid dangerous glass shards) or enclosed in a pre-made cloth pouch. A “do it yourself” option is to purchase a single colored glass goblet to be used in the breaking glass Jewish wedding tradition. Look for a unique glass at a vintage or used thrift store. If you are planning on keeping the glass shards from the breaking glass consider colored glass instead of clear, especially if you plan to do a craft project with them later. Make certain the glass you choose is not too thick. It needs to be easily broken when stepped on! For this reason, stay away from heavy lead crystal goblets.
Jewish Wedding Glass Pouch
The Jewish wedding glass pouch can be a simple rectangle of fabric that you sew around the glass, much like a pillowcase. Close the third end with ribbon or sew it shut. Choose fabric that matches your wedding colors. Thicker fabrics such as velvet work well, but thinner fabrics can be doubled up. You don’t want them too thin or the glass shards will easily rip through it.
Good luck with your wedding planning….Mazel Tov!