• For life's milestone events - lets celebrate with ceremony

    Are you planning a Wedding, or other special event and looking for a bespoke personalised ceremony?
    Then I would be delighted to work with you!
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    I can provide a unique, inclusive ceremony and as a HSE Registered Solemniser, I can carry out your Legal Wedding in Ireland.

    (subject to legislation being adhered to before and during the ceremony)


    There are different types of Wedding Celebrants

    • Interfaith For all Religions or none
    • Church Following a specific Religion
    • Registry office Civil Ceremony
    • Humanist Non-religious/Secular


    All Legal Weddings require the intent to Marry to be Registered at least 3 months prior to the date of the Wedding

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    There are many different ceremonial elements that can be included in any ceremony. (See Index) Ceremonial Elements section.


    For Weddings, there are two Legal requirements which are highlighted below, the rest of your ceremony can be as you wish, within reason.

    Here are the most popular ones:-

    • Unity Candle
    • Memorial Candle
    • Sand Ceremony
    • Hand Fasting
    • Vows
    • Ring Warming
    • Exchanging of Rings
    • Declaration of Impediment
    • Signing of the Register

    You may wish to include your own cultural, symbolic traditions, or something totally unique.


    Your ceremony can be as short, or as long as you wish

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    Other events for ceremony

    • Welcome/ending an event
    • Giving Thanks
    • BabyShowers/Gender Reveal
    • Baby naming/Blessing
    • Birthdays
    • Changing Schools
    • Adolescence/Puberty
    • Sweet 16
    • Graduation
    • 18thor 21st Adulthood
    • Milestone Birthdays
    • Transitioning/Coming Out
    • Healing ceremonies
    • Farewell Moving Away
    • New Home blessing
    • New Members – blending of families/groups
    • Adoption
    • Promotion in work
    • Moments of Award or Pride
    • NewBusiness
    • Engagements
    • End of Single Life Hen/Stag
    • Weddings
    • Relationship changes
    • VowRenewal
    • Anniversaries
    • Retirement
    • Illnessrecovery
    • Living Wake
    • End of Life support
    • Funeral
    • Burial
    • Internment of Ashes
    • Memorial
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    Spiritual Counselling

    • Relationship Exploration
    • Faith Exploration
    • Life Exploration
    • Biography Exploration
    • Illness Support
    • End of Life Support
    • Bereavement Counselling
  • Ceremonial Elements

    Unity Candle


    A candle is often used to bring a sense of opening a ceremonial space. The couple light a common candle (sometimes called a Unity candle) from two individual candles, symbolising their union. The individual candles may be lit by members of their families representing the union of two families. This can be a wonderful way to included Mothers in the ceremony.


    Memorial Candle


    A memorial candle may be lit at the beginning, during the welcoming of guests and in memory of family and friends that have passed.


    The Love Story


    The celebrant will ask the couple individually to share what they love about each other, how they met, what made this relationship different, why they decided to get married, the circumstances of the proposal and what they look forward to in their lives together.


    This can be written into a love story and read out by the celebrant while the couple watch each other’s reactions.

    This dialogue helps to ground couples who have been immersed in the preparations for the wedding day.
    It helps couples share their feelings for each other and how they envision their future lives together.


    The Vow Exchange


    For a legal wedding to take place, a declaration of non-impediment needs to be stated by the couple.

    The celebrant can do this as a repeat after them, one line at a time. The couple cannot simply say, I do.


    The wedding vows to each other can be taken from a traditional format or be written by the couple, the love story can help the
    couple with what they might like to say. The Vow is an opportunity to declare your love for each other, and your promises to each other in front of family, friends and/or witnesses.


    Exchanging of Rings


    Contrary to widespread belief, you do not have to exchange rings to become married. This ritual dates back to ancient Egypt, with the ring serving as a symbol of the couple's eternal love. The couple exchange rings while they pledge their commitment to one another. The accompanying words may follow a traditional format or be written from scratch by the couple or celebrant.


    Ring Warming


    Another option with an Irish connection, the ring-warming ritual is an old Irish wedding tradition that creates a great unifying moment.
    Before the rings are exchanged, they are passed around the guests to be "warmed up". Each guest holds the rings in their hands for a moment and sets an intention or wish or prayer for the couple. In some ceremonies, the rings are only "warmed up" by certain guests, family members or the wedding party, for example. The rings could be taken to guests who cannot make the wedding - for example, elderly grandparents - to be "warmed up" in the days and weeks before the wedding


    The Flower Exchange


    The couple can offer each other a rose, as a token of their love and commitment. The chosen flower can symbolise their love and be used in the future as a way to open communication in a space that is filled with their love, as on their wedding day. 

    Chosen friends and family members can offer the couple single roses, speaking aloud their hopes and dreams for the couple's future. This is another ritual with endless opportunity for customisation, a different flower or token gift would work just as well.


    The Puzzle Ritual


    This is a great option for couples who love board games and puzzles! It finds the couple assembling a wooden puzzle during the ceremony to symbolise their unity. This can either be a simple logic puzzle, or a special puzzle that has been custom-made for the occasion. This is a great one to use with children, too - just make sure there are enough pieces for everyone you want to include.


    The Bread Ritual


    Wedding ceremony rituals involving bread are popular in many cultures, often symbolising the couple's prosperity - Parents or guests offer the couple a special loaf of bread in the hope that they will never go hungry. Combined with salt and wine, a bread ritual can also create a food theme at your ceremony. Your celebrant might utter the traditional housewarming blessing, "Bread, that this house may never know hunger. Salt, that life may always have flavour. And wine, that joy and prosperity may reign forever."

    In Poland there is a twist to this Ritual. They have shots instead of wine. In one shot glass is water, the other vodka. Whoever drinks the vodka will be the 'boss' of the marriage!


    The Loving Cup


    It involves a ceremonial cup, usually a two-handled silvercup, or Scottish “Quaich” which the couple both drink from, and sometimes offer to their guests, too. The idea is that a drink shared is sweeter, and your celebrant may recite some words to this effect. Couples are invited to toast to their past, present and future. Any drink to suit you and your partner. Using an heirloom cup or glass as your loving cup is a nice touch, too.


    Hand Fasting or "Tying the Knot"


    Hand fasting is an ancient Celtic tradition dating back over 2000 years. As well as having an Irish connection, it is also the ritual that birthed the phrase "tying the knot." The couple stand face to face, as a celebrant or family member binds their hands with a special cord or ribbon, as a symbol of their commitment. There may be many ribbons symbolising elements in their lives and may be presented my many of the Guests. It's a lovely way to include others in the ceremony.


    The Sand Ceremony


    The sand ceremony involves pouring sand from individual containers into a single vase or vessel to symbolise their union. Some couples take the sand from beaches near where they grew up or beaches that are particularly special to them, while others use colourful sand to create a decorative item they can then display in their home. Some couples ask members of their family to get involved by adding more containers of sand, symbolising the joining of two families. This is a great option for children to be part of the ceremony too, particularly if it is two families coming together. The Vessel could be a Timer globe, and there could be a reference in the ceremony to time spent as a family, or time to listen or a time to speak.


    Salt Pouring


    Similar to the sand-pouring ritual above, the salt-pouring ritual involves the couple pouring salt from two individual containers into a single vessel to symbolise their union. They can then use the shared salt to cook at home, making it a great option for food-loving couples. Some couples source salt that is produced near where they grew up, which is a lovely touch!


    The Guard of Honour


    Typically involves a group from the couple's social circle, friends from a sports team, work place or community group, holding something aloft to create a canopy as the couple leave the ceremony.

    Rope Warming


    Similar to the ring-warming ritual; in preparation for a hand-fasting ritual, the length of rope or the ribbons (could be in an
    organizer bag) which could be passed around, with each guests taking a quiet moment to set an intention for the couple, send them good wishes or say a silent prayer. The rope or ribbons can then be used in a hand-fasting ritual or tied by the couple ("tying the knot") to symbolise a bond that only becomes stronger with pressure.


    Bell Ringing


    This is based on the old Irish custom when people married in barns and cottages and guests brought along a bell to ring in good luck and prosperity for the newly married couple, as there were no church bells. Today handbells which are tuned to different notes make a delightful sound when rung by your guests at the end of the ceremony. It is also a lovely one for any children to be involved with and wonderful for a Christmas themed wedding.


    The Oathing Stone


    Another Celtic ritual, this one originating in Scotland, the oathing stone ritual finds the couple symbolically setting their love in stone by reciting vows while holding a special oathing stone in their hands. When this ritual first emerged, an oath given near stone was considered to be stronger. Couples can have fun selecting their stone, perhaps taking it from a beach or place that means a lot to them.


    Wine Box or Time Capsule


    The time capsule ritual finds the couple sealing some special items in a box to open at a later date, often a special anniversary. Love letters or a bottle of wine might be accompanied by a newspaper from the day of the wedding, a CD of favourite songs, a wedding invitation or ceremony booklet - the opportunities are endless! Some couples invite guests to contribute to the time capsule too, including meaningful items (which may be kept a surprise from the couple!), or written words of advice. These time capsule-style rituals, provide a great excuse to celebrate your marriage long after the wedding day has passed. Working together, the couple hammer or seal the box closed. This is a great option for wine lovers and foodie couples!


    The Shot Ritual


    In Poland there is a twist to their shot Ritual. In one shot glass is water, the other vodka. Whoever drinks the vodka will be the 'boss' of the marriage! This Polish ritual is also accompanied by the breaking of bread and salt.

    Today, some couples invite their guests to join them in taking a shot of something alcoholic (or a bottle of beer or a glass of Champagne!) during the ceremony, to toast their new marriage. the taking of the shot is accompanied by cheers and well-wishes for the couple. It must be noted that for a Legal Wedding ceremony, alcohol cannot be served in the ceremonial room.


    Tree Planting


    The tree-planting ritual is a lovely one to include when getting married at home, or near to home, and some wedding venues may accommodate it too. (It provides a good excuse for you to return to the venue with each anniversary!) It finds the couple planting a tree together during their ceremony, the tree representing their relationship, which is about to take root, grow and flourish. You may choose a tree, a rose bush or other type of plant would work just as well. You can also add soil from both of your family homes or home countries, and ask family and friends to get involved, too.


    Jumping the Broom


    Jumping the Broom, or (Jumping the Besom) is a ceremony in which a couple jumps over a broom laid on the floor. This was a tradtion used by African Americans and is also a custom used in Irish Weddings. This practice was used by couples who wanted to be married, when legally getting married was not allowed.


    The Talking Stick/object


    This is a great option for couples who want to commit to having a tool to aid communication when times are more difficult and make that promise to each other on a day that their love is the deepest. This can also be a Flower as above, rather than an object or actual stick.


    This is not deemed to be a complete list and I will continue to add to it as I discover more wonderful ways to celebrate love and unity.

  • What you can expect working with me as your Celebrant

    This timeline is simply a guide and is not set in stone


    Once you have your venue and date, contact me for a chat, and to check availability.

    If you would then like to consider me as your Celebrant, I will email you a list of questions, as well as a contract, plus some information like possible readings to help bring together elements for your ceremony.

    The contract returned and the booking deposit paid will secure the date.


    At least 3 months before your Ceremony...

    For Weddings, please attend Registrar's appointment with your required documentation - You will get your MRF Marriage Registration Form.

    We will meet again for you to share your ideas for the ceremony.

    What makes your wedding special is your love story in the ceremony; what you love about each other and your hopes and dreams.

    Your Vows will be your Promise to each other - they can be traditional or your own.

    You may chose what music and readings you would like too, they set the atmosphere.


    Six weeks to go... 

    The first draft of your ceremony will be emailed to you both to read.

    Please make a note of any amendments you wish to make.  

    We will meet to discuss any changes, settle nerves and finalise details of people included in the ceremony i.e witnesses etc.


    Two weeks to go...

    Balance to be paid. 

    Final copy of the Ceremony will be emailed to you both.

    Your Vows etc will remain a surprise for the big day


    The Wedding Day!!!  

    Ceremony details will be shared with your musician, photographer, readers and venue.

    For Legal Weddings your MRF must be handed to the Celebrant on the Day.

    I will speak to you both to confirm that you are consenting to the marriage, before the Ceremony.

    The MRF will be signed during the ceremony and returned to you.

    You must present the MRF to the Registrars Office who will provide you with your Marriage Certificate. This can be after your honeymoon

  • Online Requests

    Send a message or email love.annehyland@gmail.com


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