Sunday, March 14, 2010

Photograph permission by travellady.com


Witches do marry -- whether it be a handfasting ceremony and/or a legal affair (according to the man-made laws of the land).

My husband and I married both ways––handfasting in ‘02 and legally in ’06.

Like other brides and grooms everywhere, witches (includes pagans and Wiccans) wish for their wedding vows, rituals and celebrations to be beautiful, memorable and reflective of their spiritual beliefs.

Witches, you can have a wedding that is a true expression of your beliefs and values. Start by creating your wedding vows that reflect your true intentions and magic. Vows that are a sacred message for all to hear, a message of your devotion to the goddess(es), one that speaks of the power of your love and the purpose of uniting as a family.

After our San Francisco City Hall wedding with the usual vows my husband and I exchanged our own at our reception with family and friends. We had written them on special paper with a selected colored pens. I also read an old Celtic poem. Afterward the readings we burned the papers in a cauldron, sending the words up into the ether toward the heavens--a common w/w/p ritual. A ceremony of lighting a unity candle (two figures intertwined) followed.

“Handfasting and Wedding Rituals: Welcoming Hera's Blessing” by Raven Kaldera suggests ways to create a holy pagan/witch/wiccan wedding.

Another way of making a ritual of your vows is after exchanging them, place the paper in a circle on an altar set up for your wedding. The circle can be drawn before or at the time of the ceremony and made from small stones, crystals, shells or rose petals. Or you can choose to burn them in a fire-proof container at the altar or later. Scatter the ashes in a moving body of water or bury in the ground.

If older family members or those of another religion are guests, perhaps consider including something conventional rituals or religious aspects in a show respect. It can help bring them accept and celebrate your pagan union in a joyous way. The word God might be said, as would The Lady and The Lord, or a goddess, such as the Greek goddess Hera or Roman name, Juno. Perhaps ask a parent or grandparent to light a unity candle.

After exchanging rings blend the red rope handfasting ritual. Clasp hands and with the free hands tie a ribbon around the united hands.

Jump the Broom - an old pagan wedding ritual - at the altar stand within a circle drawn beforehand or the bride’s attendees can draw a circle around the couple before or after the vows are exchanged. After the vows one of your wedding party can lay the broom down for both to jump.

Jumping the broom marks the beginning of making a home together and symbolizes that the groom and bride physically and spiritually crossing the threshold into the land of matrimony. As they sweep away the old and the welcome the new they begin a new life together with a clean sweep!

Witch, Wiccan and pagan ceremonies, rituals and magic making begins with Calling in the The Four Elements

http://www.ceremonies.com.au/sitefiles/res_symbol.htm

Water:
Water is the giver and purifier of life, sustaining us, as it will this marriage.

Air:
Air breaths new life into love.
 Giving both _______ and ______ the freedom to be themselves.

Earth:
The earth upon which we walk provides us with our home and our future.

Fire:
From fire comes love and warmth.

Candles are very Witchy - aren't they? and also culturally and religiously acceptable to others: During our reception my husband's daughter and my son lit separate candles and then presented each to us. After receiving the candle, we newly weds then lit a “unity couple” candle of a man and woman united in wax. It burned throughout the reception in a safe fire-proof container away from guests bumping into it but where it could be seen. Or,you can light separate candles placed close, but not touching. As the candles burn down the wax merges. As a minister when officiating at weddings I provide two image or figure candles set on a platter together and later after they have burned down, I “read” the wax combination for the couple.

What to wear? Witches can and do, wear traditional clothing. The bride -- white gown or full ritual witch clothing. Where to buy witch clothing? You can put together a gown that might look like Elvira's maybe in white though rather than her black or black if that is what you wish, or visit a Renaissance or Celtic faire for capes and dresses. And, let us not forget that special sexy (witches are very sensual beings) undergarments, something a bit deliciously wicked!

Merry meet, merry part and merry meet again. Wishing you a very joyous union of love.

Websites to help your wedding day be a magical one.

http://www.religioustolerance.org/mar_hand.htm



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