Monday, 16 January 2012

Inter Faith Marriages/Weddings

by Uganda Wedding Bells

In today’s multicultural society it is becoming increasingly common for couples from different religions to get married. Faith and religious beliefs shared by the engaged couple is likely to be the biggest factor in determining what kind of wedding it will be.

Incorporating the two different faiths may seem daunting at first, but here are a few ideas that may help relieve some of the stress.

Establish clear communication with your partner
It is important that both you and your fiancé discuss how many and what religious traditions, if any, will be incorporated in the ceremony. Be clear on what you both feel comfortable and uncomfortable with and understand that compromises will need to be made.
Involve both families
It is likely that the most opinionated views and disappointment will come from family members particular parents and older family members who may not like the idea that you are straying away from tradition. Perhaps it may be practical to use a celebrant for each faith or even two weddings to make everyone feel included. However if this is not possible the most sensible way to help them understand your decision is to include and involve both families in the planning process. Be firm about what you want and don’t want but again be willing to compromise and be flexible.
Consider your guests
When combining two faiths in a wedding ceremony it would be naïve to expect the guests to follow and understand the rituals that may take place. It is possible that some of your guests may not have attended a ritual outside of their own faith. It is therefore a good idea to create a program for them that explains why certain rituals take place and the significance and meaning behind them.
Combine both faiths
If you both want to incorporate both rituals you may consider having the ceremony in both places, say visit Kibuli Mosque and All Saints. Please note that you have to plan ample time for this!
A universal wedding on neutral ground
Alternatively you may choose a wedding that is not based on any religious ground. Have reading and music that is not religious. Ask the celebrant to use non-inclusive language and not terms that are specific to any certain religion. Instead have the celebrant focus on universal themes and marriage themes of love and unity. It might also be a good idea to avoid having the ceremony in a place of worship unless it is very important for either the bride or groom. Or If you both want to incorporate both rituals into your ceremony, combine readings and music form both religions. You might also want to have 2 officiants present, one for each religion.

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