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Symbolic wedding Celebrant in France : A real profession

Symbolic wedding Celebrant in France : A real profession

In France and in many parts of the world, a church wedding ceremony usually follows the civil marriage. Although not legally binding, the church wedding ceremony is deeply rooted in traditions and is considered as unavoidable by many couples. Most of them get married in church more out of respect for traditions than because it reflects a real belief.

Over the past 10 years in France, things have started to change as an increasing number of couples have decided not to get married in church. There could be several reasons, which actually reflect modern society: They were married before, have received different religious education, are of the same sex or they simply did not wish to have a religious wedding, etc. Until recently, the only option available for them was the legal marriage often perceived as an administrative chore rather than a real commitment. Same sex couples did not even have that possibility in France until 2013 as the very first legal marriage ceremony took place in Montpellier on the 29th May.

Fortunately, a fairly recent concept has become increasingly more popular over the past decade: The symbolic ceremony also called secular or humanist ceremony. Very much like a church ceremony, a symbolic ceremony has no legal value however it is the ideal opportunity for couples to celebrate their union in a truly personalized and meaningful manner.

Symbolic ceremonies were first seen in US romantic series where elegant couples wearing sumptuous outfits would get married in a tastefully decorated garden overlooking breath taking landscape.

Symbolic ceremonies are celebrated by people called celebrants or masters of ceremony. In France, no regulations apply to this profession to this day, which means that pretty much anyone can become a celebrant. For this reason, it is often celebrated by a friend of the couple or a family member, however more and more couples use the services of professional celebrants. Progressively, this profession is perceived as a real profession which requires specific skills: A good celebrant must display excellent writing skills, be articulate and comfortable with public speaking, be able to understand people’s personalities and expectations. The good news is that there are more and more good professional celebrants out there and that the level of service is improving significantly.

For more information on symbolic wedding ceremonies in France and wedding celebrants in France, visit french wedding style or wedding sabroad guide and if you wish to become a wedding celebrant in France, contact us

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