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Using humour in ceremonies
Marriage is a solemn and binding relationship. In fact, marriage celebrants are legally required to remind a couple of this during their marriage ceremony. But a marriage ceremony doesn’t need to be all solemn and serious and while marriage celebrants aren’t stand up comedians, there are many ways to include humour in your ceremony.... Today's blog post is written by TCN Celebrant Kim Waddington.
Including humour when telling a couple’s love story during a ceremony, for example, how they met, the proposal, or some of the quirky things they love about each other, is a fun and lighthearted way to engage a couple’s family and friends during the ceremony. As a celebrant, I’ve noticed that I always get surprised laughter when listing a couple’s serious achievements such as “travelling the world together, buying a home together” and then throwing in something a little less serious, such as “getting a puppy together”. Couples who include a little humour in their personal vows make those vows memorable for themselves and their guests.
But humour, used well, can also be a great way for a celebrant to ease tense or nervous moments for the bride and groom. When we came to the exchange of rings during a marriage ceremony last year, the groom was very nervous and flustered and took his bride’s right hand. I gently said to him, “try her OTHER left hand”. The bride thought this was hilarious and the groom, seeing his bride laughing, relaxed too. Not all brides and grooms would have found this funny. It all hinges on the celebrant getting to know a couple well enough to be able to decide when and how to inject ad lib humour that will be appreciated by the couple and their guests.
Photo credit: Morgan Roberts www.morganrobertsphotography.com
In any ceremony though, never risk disrespecting, offending or irritating a couple or their families and friends. Keep it tasteful and lighthearted and leave the stand up routine to the best man at the reception.
Humour can of course also be used in a similar way in a range of other ceremonies such as vow renewals and children’s naming day ceremonies, but using humour when remembering loved ones in a funeral service, when done appropriately, can really touch hearts. Like Dolly Parton’s character in the movie Steel Magnolias, laughter through tears is my favourite emotion. Sharing a funny story about the person, calling them by one of their tongue-in-cheek funny nicknames or recalling something funny the person said are all good ways to encourage those grieving their loss to smile through their tears. It’s certainly not disrespectful to smile when remembering a loved one and it may just bring some comfort to those closest to the person.
For more insight into using humour in your ceremonies - click here
If you'd like to contact TCN Celebrant and guest blogger, Kim Waddington - here are her contact details:
Cover photo credit: Rochelle James - www.rochellejamesphotography.zenfolio.com