Marriages and wedding ceremonies aren’t for everyone, for various reasons. Does this mean for those unable to marry, or those unwilling to, cannot mark and celebrate their relationship? Simply, no, a celebrant commitment ceremony is the perfect way to mark and celebrate a relationship and union.
Why choose a commitment ceremony?
Marriage is a legally recognised union of two people who aren’t already in a marriage or civil partnership. Both parties do not need to be in love, they just need to agree to it and be legally able to marry.
A wedding is a ceremony based on the love and relationship of those the ceremony is for. A wedding is a ceremony and, without the legal declarations stated, it has no legal recognition.
A commitment ceremony is an alternative to both marriage and a wedding. It can be based on love, as many are, but it can also be a commitment ceremony of outlined intentions such as a business partnership or a committed friendship. Commitment ceremonies do not have any legal status, which is ideal for those do are unable to marry or do not want to have a wedding.
Choosing to mark a relationship with a commitment ceremony is a declaration of commitment between those involved.
Who can have a commitment ceremony?
Anyone can have a commitment ceremony, including those who are legally married to others. It is a popular choice of ceremony for partners who are legally married to other people and awaiting their divorces to finalise before they can marry their new partners.
Can vows be said and rings exchanged during a commitment ceremony?
Yes. Vows, promises, words of commitment, ring exchanges, other jewellery exchanges, and a certificate signing can all be included within a commitment ceremony.
Handfasting in a commitment ceremony
Handfasting is believed to be our oldest betrothal custom. The Pagan wedding tradition can also be included within any ceremony. Those the ceremony is for are bound together in recognition of the ultimate commitment to each other. Further information on handfasting can be found here
Alternative ceremonies for alternative people
Marriage declarations, weddings and commitment ceremonies all take place through a desire to be in a relationship which is recognised by others. As an alternative celebrant who specialises in non-traditional ceremonies, I can work with you to have a meaningful and uniquely crafted ceremony based on your requirements, in a location of your choice.
Ceremonies can include Pagan and spiritual beliefs, if desired, and many different ceremonial elements such as a handfasting, mead, rum, gin, or prosecco ceremony, and oathing stones can take place.
Commitment ceremonies take place in any location or venue and are personal to those they are for. Some couples see them as their first ceremony and then may go on to become engaged and then married.
They can be intimate and informal with just the ceremony is for present, or they can be well attended occasions involving family and friends who can be part of the ceremony rather than just watching, if required.
Whether through marriage, a wedding or a commitment ceremony, every relationship of union can and should be celebrated.