Heather & Mike’s Humanist Wedding in The Playfair Library

I got some lovely cards this Christmas, but my favourite came from Heather and Mike.

Unlike normal people, they didn’t send me Jpegs, but instead posted proper photographic prints, with captions hand-written on the back. This one said, “This pretty much sums up the feedback we got on our ceremony! The best endorsement was to hear how enthusiastically it was talked about by a) my Catholic aunt, and b) Mike’s teenage and perpetually unimpressed cousin”. 

Somehow I feel that has a lot to do with the way Heather and Mike think and write. I liked the way I found myself saying, “When I asked Mike and Heather what they wanted from their ceremony, the first word that sprang to both their minds was “brevity”. Admittedly Mike didn’t actually know the meaning of the word “brevity” at the time, so he was somewhat surprised when it sprang to his mind…”

As Heather wrote, “The best piece of wedding advice I came across was to take the ceremony a bit more seriously, and the reception a bit less so, and a humanist ceremony allowed us to do exactly that, putting so much more thought into the proceedings than we might otherwise have done.

We approached wedding planning thinking of the ceremony as ‘the boring bit’, to be got out of the way as hastily as possible, but it ended up being the most enjoyable and memorable part of the day for us. (Well for me – Mike’s hedging between that and the cake, but it was exceptionally good cake…)

Thank you again, for enabling us to have a wedding that reflected us, rather than ever feeling like a “one-size-fits-all” or tick-box exercise, and for surprising our guests (and us!) with the realisation that it’s actually possible for a ceremony to be actively enjoyable.”

We also appreciated the way you mingled with our guests afterwards – and I can only apologise for whichever of my brothers accosted you about Christopher Hitchens!”

Not at all, Heather. A spirited discussion over a glass of champagne is a great way to end an afternoon, and I enjoyed every minute of it! And you can be sure that your ceremony will go on to inspire other couples who don’t want a “run of the mill, your-name-goes-here, hurry up and get it over with” beginning to their day.

Thanks for asking me to be your celebrant. It was a pleasure!

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