F.A.Q.

If you are reading this page then you may have questions about the legal process of getting married in Ireland, or you may have questions about the type of ceremonies I perform. The following are some answers to the questions I am asked most frequently. Please feel free to contact me either by e-mail or phone if you have any other questions and I will do my best to answer them for you.

What do I need to do to get married in Ireland?

The best place to get information regarding getting married in Ireland is on the website of the General Register Office for Ireland.

Where can I get married?

In Ireland a wedding ceremony can be held at any venue of your choice as long as its appropriate and safe, so you could get married on a beach, in an ancient castle, or a romantic hotel, or on a misty highland island. You just need the permission of the person who owns the property. It must be open and accessible by the public. It must have an identifible address.

Can you perform a legal wedding ceremony or do we need to be married by a registrar first?

Yes I can perform a legal wedding ceremony. I am trained and ordained by the Interfaith Foundation in the U.K. I can soleminise your marriage under the Civil Registration Act 2004. This also applies to same sex marriages as of On May 22nd, 2015. .

I am not religious, can you still perform the ceremony?

Yes. As an interfaith celebrant I can perform wedding ceremonies for people of all faiths or of none. Usually if people have a strong affiliation to one particular religion they will want to get married within that tradition. However there are many people who come from different faith backgrounds, or where one partner, or both of you, have no specific religious belief at all. Some people feel constrained by what is offered to them by a traditional church wedding and may feel uncomfortable about what they are asked to say during their marriage ceremony.

There are also many people who are not church goers and do not have a religious faith, but who do have a sense of something spiritual, who find that a civil ceremony is lacking something. I can help you to create a wedding ceremony and vows that reflect and respect the beliefs and values of each person getting married, and can also honour the traditions of the wider family.

Ireland has voted yes to same-sex marriage. Can my same-sex partner and I be legally married in an Interfaith ceremony?

Yes you can. On May 22nd, 2015, the citizens of Ireland voted to amend the Constitution by inserting the following text: “Marriage may be contracted in accordance with law by two persons without distinction as to their sex.” Same-sex couples must comply with the standard legal requirements of marriage, as outlined on the HSE’s website: http://www.hse.ie/eng/services/list/1/bdm/marriagesinireland/ Interfaith believes in equality for all and we are delighted to now be able to assist all couples to celebrate marriage without distinction as to their sex. Our celebrants have now conducted many same-sex wedding ceremonies and we look forward to discuss wedding formats and ideas with you.

How much will it cost?

The exact cost will depend on what you want included, whether you want to write your own ceremony or whether you want me to write most of it (guided by you, of course). You may want to include a particular ritual, such as handfasting, or you may want to combine it with another ceremony such as a baby naming or blessing. In general, the cost is likely to be in the range €600 Euro. I may also charge travel and accommodation costs but this will be kept at the absolute minimum.

Can you help me plan the rest of my wedding?

I am not a wedding planner, and I do not arrange any other part of your wedding. I can however make recommendations about other people who might be able to help you. My role is to help you design the marriage ceremony that you want, to support you as you agree your vows, and the words that you'll say if you exchange rings. I can suggest suitable readings or music for the ceremony, and can advise on traditions and rituals that you might want to include. The rest of the celebration is over to you!

What are the next steps?

The first thing is to contact me to discuss your wedding date - Saturdays in the summertime are always busy! I start by asking you both some questions to help me understand what you love about each other and what getting married means to you. I will find out if you have any particular spiritual beliefs or traditions that you would like to reflect in your ceremony, we will discuss readings, music and rituals that might be included, and who else might be involved in the ceremony. I can do this face-to-face if it is convenient or we can do it over the phone, by email or on skype. We will then agree an outline for your ceremony.

As your wedding date comes nearer, I will finalise the ceremony with you, and you may want to have a rehearsal. On the day of your wedding I will meet you at the venue, check the final arrangements and then conduct your wonderful, personalised marriage ceremony.

What is an Interfaith Celebrant?

Interfaith celebrants have trained for two years to create and leads ceremonies for people of all faiths or none. That means we can offer you complete flexibility for your choice of marriage ceremony. We can hold a ceremony that is tailor-made to suit what you want, to include whatever is personal and meaningful to you, and to give you the freedom to choose whether your ceremony is religious or non-religious. To be married by an Interfaith Celebrant there is no requirement to join an organisation or to agree with any set of beliefs. The ethos of an Interfaith Celebrant is that whatever YOU think and believe is far more important than what I think, or what any group or organisation believes.

In an Interfaith wedding you have complete control over what is to be included in your ceremony. Together with the celebrant you can discuss what you wish to be acknowledged and included in your ceremony. Vows, readings, music and any other ritual can be religious, spiritual or secular. Interfaith celebrants have been trained to offer ceremonies people of any faith, or of none. We have all had a 2 year training which included study of the major world religions, ancient traditions and secular beliefs. Although we are called interfaith, ceremonies do not have to be about a faith or belief, or be at all religious. Interfaith is not a religion, and interfaith celebrants do not guide your ceremony towards any particular language, or promote any particular belief system or doctrine. Interfaith ministers and celebrants work with you to create a moving, personally meaningful occasion. It is your ceremony, and your choice.

How does an Interfaith Celebrant differ from a Church of Ireland Minister, or a Roman Catholic Priest?

Interfaith Celebrants do not represent any one religion or belief. We have the flexibility to create a ceremony that is not confined by church rules or religious language, and instead to create a ceremony that reflects your own personal beliefs and traditions. We can hold a marriage ceremony anywhere in Ireland, inside or outside, in a castle or on a beach.

What is the difference between a Humanist ceremony and an Interfaith ceremony?

A Humanist ceremony cannot contain religious content. An Interfaith ceremony has the flexibility to be entirely secular, or it can include and religious or spiritual elements such as prayers or blessings, or spiritual readings and music. In a similar way to Humanist, and other celebrants, we work with you to find out about you, what love and marriage means to you, and to create a ceremony that is personal and unique. An interfaith celebrant can hold a ceremony which reflects humanistic principles, valuing each person as an independent, rational individual, and valuing all positive human characteristics.

What else can be included?

We can include a wide range of rituals such as a candle lighting or handfasting. However, we do not represent other religions or groups so could not include rituals specific to other religions such as a Catholic mass, or communion.

Why do people choose an interfaith celebrant?

Here are what some couples have said about their reasons for choosing an interfaith celebrant:

"I am not a regular church goer, so getting married in a church does not feel authentic. Nonetheless I would like something spiritual to be part of the day."

"My partner and I come from different religious and cultural heritages. We want to enjoy a day that is truly ours, but which respects and honours the beliefs of our families and other guests."

"I have a feeling of spirituality, but I am not at all religious. My beliefs are personal and are not encompassed entirely by any established faith."

"My fiance and I are atheist / agnostic and we feel uncomfortable with traditional religious language."

"I have not been inspired by civil ceremonies that I have been to, and I would like something more personal."

"We want to have input into creating our ceremony, making it personal, and we think we want to write our own vows."

"I am an independent thinker who questions traditional assumptions. I want to make up my own mind about what should be included in our wedding ceremony."

"I believe in something, though its hard for me to say exactly what that is. I probably dont want to use spiritual language in our ceremony, but I want the freedom to feel that my belief can be acknowledged."

Is it a legal wedding ceremony or would we have to be married by a registrar first?

Yes, It is a legal ceremony.

 

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