Non-denominational wedding + family reactions

posted 3 years ago in Secular
  • poll: How did your family react to a non-denominational ceremony?
    I had a religious ceremony. : (2 votes)
    20 %
    I had a non-denominational ceremony and my family was fine with it. : (4 votes)
    40 %
    I had a non-denominational ceremony and it upset my family. : (2 votes)
    20 %
    I wanted a non-denominational ceremony but did not have one. : (0 votes)
    Other (please explain). : (2 votes)
    20 %
  • Post # 2
    667 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: October 2013

    Why not do an interfaith ceremony? There are plenty of Rabbis who will and do participate in interfaith ceremonies. Google interfaith officiant. Then, build a ceremony that reflects both traditions — stand under a chuppah, smash a glass, etc.

    Post # 4
    3845 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: June 2014

    busybee3791:   We’re having a secular wedding, and no one has voiced any objections.  It’s your wedding, have the ceremony which means the most to you, and which will make you both feel married.  

    Post # 5
    2189 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: November 2013

    I can totally empathize. :-/. My DH is Presbyterian and I’m Catholic. Both of our families are very devout but we’re not so we went the non-denominational ceremony way. I think both sets of parents (and some family members) were upset but hey, it wasn’t THEIR wedding.  My advice would be to figure out between the two of you what elements of your spectacle life stories will make it FEEL like a wedding to YOU. Then include those elements in your ceremony.  What’s important is that you has feel like you’re married  and had the wedding that you wanted. Although I’m not a practicing Catholic, for example, I chose the on-denominational Christian ceremony and when we got to the officiant and turned to each other and the officiant said “…here we are under God’s sky…” I got chills and goosebumps  and my heart swelled with emotion.  And that’s when I said yup needed to hear something along those words for it to feel real.  We felt/feel married.  So nowadays when anybody asks so what church did you get married in? Or other annoying comments it’s just an annoyance but not a omg-I’m-so-upset feeling, or yea-I-let-everyone-down-feeling ya know?

    good luck and good vibes your way!

    Post # 6
    2117 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: June 2015

    busybee3791:  FI and I are in almost the exact same situation, except reversed! It was actually important to him to incorporate some Jewish traditions, though, so we are having a secular wedding (we’re getting married by a Justice of the Peace) but are including the stepping on the glass thing and a few other, small traditions. My mom really wanted us to get married in the Catholic Church, but it isn’t going to happen (he’s Jewish and I don’t even really identify as Catholic), so instead we’re going to have 1 traditional Catholic wedding reading (and maybe something else, too). Obviously, it’s your decision, but I found that it was worth it (and meaningful) to think about including some small religious traditions into an otherwise secular wedding ceremony. It makes everyone happy and it doesn’t take away from what we want. Good luck!

    Post # 7
    2367 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: June 2014

    We are having a 100% secular wedding. Our officiant is a JOP. His family doesn’t care, they’re not religious. My mom was actually vaguely upset that it wasn’t a catholic wedding, even though she’s not catholic. My father was a lapsed catholic, and she has this odd notion that since he was catholic, the faith somehow was supposed to be inherited. I very nicely explained that a catholic wedding would be impossible, as I’m divorced and we’re atheist. Once we got past her initial suggestion of lying to the priest, she accepted it. 

    Your families will just have to get over it. Don’t try and fake a faith just to make them happy for a day.

    Post # 8
    4638 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: September 2014

    I simply don’t care if religious family members take issue with our non-denominational ceremony. Your wedding ceremony is to officiate the marriage between you and your fiance, not you and your family.

    If your beliefs don’t allign with theirs on a regular basis, why should they on one single day? I think its disrespectful to fake a faith you don’t believe in for the sake of other people.

    Post # 9
    1108 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: March 2014

    We had a completely secular ceremony and no one even noticed.

    Post # 10
    2 posts

    I performed a ceremony for 2 friends.  She was spiritual and he was raised catholic.  They decided on a secular ceremony.<br /><br />I don’t think anyone got upset at THEM, but some cranky family members approached me and quizzed me on where I got my certification (online) and training.

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