How to Legally Celebrate with 50 guests When the Limit is now 25 but 50 at the Ceremony

How to Legally Celebrate with 50 guests When the Limit is now 25 but 50 at the Ceremony

Couples getting Married in Ireland were overjoyed to hear the news of.an increase in marriage ceremony guests from 6 to a massive 50! But there was a catch – there is a maximum of 25 for the reception and celebrations after! What a Dilemma!

How cruel can this be? How can you remove 25 people from your ceremony guest list for the celebrations after without offending them? There is a solution – and it’s right there in front of you. You don’t have to remove anyone from your ceremony guest list either!..

What you do is have your ceremony at say, 12 noon, followed by your photo shoot.  Then two separate celebrations, each with 25 people. One celebration with 25 people for an earlier meal say 2:30pm, followed by a 2nd celebration for a later evening meal maybe at 7pm.

How you run both celebrations is completely up to you! Your wedding venue may even give you a discount for doubling your guest numbers!  What a day!  How lucky are you to have 2 celebrations!

Your Special Day

If you believe your ceremony should be an important part of your special day, no matter how big or small your requirements may be,

Please don't hesitate to get in touch so I can answer any questions you might have - and to find out if I am available on your big day..

I would be honoured to work with you.

Essential Advice for Your Enchanted Beach Wedding in Ireland

Essential Advice for Your Enchanted Beach Wedding in Ireland

My homeland Australia is renowned for its beach weddings. Here in Ireland it is possible to be legally married on a beach, but only if your chosen wedding venue has direct access to the beach from within their grounds. There are a number of glorious wedding venues in Ireland which satisfy this criteria.

In Ireland a legal marriage ceremony must be conducted at a location recognised by the Marriage Act, which is open to the public without hindrance, also with a building and a postal address.. The location does not need HSE insprection & approval, unless the marriage ceremony will be a Registry Office marriage ceremony (Civil Ceremony) conducted by a Civil Registrar.

For many couples getting married in Ireland who dream of a beach wedding, its not always that simple. Especially if they already have their favourite beach in mind which does not have an adjoining wedding venue! But there is a dignified solution, and here it is:

Option No.1,

Have 2 ceremonies on the day, and enchanted commitment ceremony on the beach, followed by a legal marriage ceremony at a. nearby location. I have conducted beach weddings many times using this method, and I can say from experience that it is a wonderful experience for your guests!

  • Your first ceremony is a commitment ceremony at the beach. This is complete with your choice of ceremony traditions which may include reading your own personal vows written to for each other and kept as a surprise, exchange of friendship rings if you wish, and of course the beautiful celtic handfasting.
    What could be more enchanting for a beach wedding here in Ireland to include the celtic handfasting? At this non-legal handfasting ceremony you are declared hand-fasted, you are not declared or pronounced married..
  • Next, have your legal marriage ceremony at a nearby location, approximately 1 hour later. Your handfasting chord can remain tied around your two wrists for this ceremony if you wish, as a symbol of your handfasting ceremony and removed when signing documents. Or your handfasting chord can be laid onto the altar as a decoration.

It’s not an offence to have a non-legal ceremony before a legal marriage ceremony – what is an offence is to include any ceremony parts from the Marriage Act in a non-legal ceremony (including do you take each other to be husband/wife/spouse) if the couple aren’t already married, and to pronounced a couple as being married when they are not really married at all.

Anyone can have a commitment ceremony without being legally married, in ancient times this was traditionally done as part of an engagement celebration, as long as they are not pronounced married in the non-legal ceremony.

.By including the handfasting in their non-legal beach commitment ceremony and declaring the couple handfasted, rather than married, is a very easy way to ensure that the handfasting ceremony complies with the Marriage Act.

Option No.2,

Have 2 ceremonies with your legal marriage ceremony at least one day before your non-legal beach wedding with all your guests. Your legal marriage ceremony attended only by your two witnesses. Honestly I can’t see the point of doing this – why would you ever want to have a fake beach wedding, when you are already married?

I am from Australia where every wedding ceremony is a legal marriage ceremony, because you can be legally married anywhere. But divorce rates are also much higher in Australia. So having some restrictions on the location of your marriage isn’t really such a bad thing. Being married the day before your big wedding ceremony day is a very European thing and something which as an Aussie, I just find very strange indeed!.

But if this makes perfect sense to you and you feel it is the best option, then just go for it! At the end of the day its your wedding, and what matters is that you have the wedding you have always wanted.

Conclusion

My Option 1 format for beach ceremonies where the beach ceremony is not a legal marriage, is what makes sense to me, but may not make sense to everyone. Which doesn’t mean that its either right or wrong.
Some couples may prefer to have legal marriage ceremony first, followed by beach ceremony eg. at sunset.
It’s all about what the couple really wants. I hope that makes sense!

Your Special Day

If you believe your ceremony should be an important part of your special day, no matter how big or small your requirements may be,

Please don't hesitate to get in touch so I can answer any questions you might have - and to find out if I am available on your big day..

I would be honoured to work with you.

Postponing or Canceling Your 2020 or 2021 Wedding – Refund of Booking Deposit

Postponing or Canceling Your 2020 or 2021 Wedding – Refund of Booking Deposit

If you are one of the many thousands of couples in the unfortunate situation of having to postpone or cancel your wedding for any reason arising from the changing pandemic restrictions, during 2020 or 2021 – thanks to the EU Unfair Contract Terms Directive (93/13/EEC) 2019, you could be entitled to a full refund of your booking deposit and all monies paid in advance to a service provider for your original wedding date.

In everyday life, when a couple organises and books their wedding, the separate contracts with each service provider for the various aspects of their wedding ceremony and celebrations after are deemed (by the consumer law) to be a contract to provide a service at a certain place on a specific date.

Ordinarily (outside a government declared emergency such as a pandemic) if a couple wishes to postpone / cancel / change their wedding plans for any reason, and there are no compassionate circumstances, eligibility for a refund of booking deposits and monies paid in advance is determined by the contract agreed to with a supplier.

However – thanks to the EU Unfair Contract Terms Directive (93/13/EEC) 2019, if there are compassionate grounds – it may be a different story. A couple who are postponing / cancelling / changing their wedding plans for any reason arising from the pandemic may very well be entitled to a full refund booking deposits and monies paid in advance.

There is more – a couple who are postponing / cancelling / changing their wedding date for any reason arising from the changing pandemic restrictions – are not under any obligation to re-book a supplier for a later date, if doing so is not in their best interests, for any reason including financial hardship.

The reason is that any consumer contract which puts the consumer at a disadvantage for reasons which were clearly beyond their control, is most often considered an unfair contract and cannot be enforced – even if the couple have already agreed to the contract in writing.

There are varying circumstances which make a contract an unfair contract, which couples in this situation would be very wise to investigate. But one thing is for sure – thanks to the EU Unfair Contract Terms Directive (93/13/EEC) 2019, if a couple postpones / cancels / changes their wedding plans for any reason arising from the changing pandemic restrictions, they may in fact be due a full refund of booking deposits and all monies paid in advance.

There are exceptions to this rule for work already completed / items purchased in preparation for the wedding day which cannot be on-sold to another couple within a reasonable time frame (14 days). Such as:

  • Ceremony – design consultation & preparation of a custom-made ceremony
  • Flowers
  • Food & perishable items
  • Invitations & Stationery – already printed or special paper ordered
  • Jewellery – custom made or materials on special order
  • Purchase of clothing – custom made or on special order
  • Purchase of shoes on special order
  • Wedding cake
  • Any other special items ordered / made or work already completed in preparation for the wedding day which cannot be on-sold to another couple within 14 days.

In the case of a custom made item or an item on special order, a refund may not be possible where work has commenced and expenses already incurred. In some cases you may be required to pay for the item in full and take delivery of the item.

If you have postponed / cancelled your wedding from it’s original date and you are in dispute with a supplier regarding an amount of money to be with-held for work already done, for which receipts are not applicable or cannot be provided, you are advised to contact Consumer Protection Ireland for further advice, as you may have an unfair contract according to the EU Unfair Contract Terms Directive (93/13/EEC) 2019.

Online purchases special note: If you have made first contact with a wedding supplier online, such as through their website or social media, ie. without ever meeting them in person (even if you have spoken on the phone) there are further contract obligations required by the EU Unfair Contract Terms Directive (93/13/EEC) 2019 which your supplier may not have fulfilled (such as not advising you of the 14-day cooling off period) which could make your contract an unfair contract.

If you have postponed / cancelled / changed your wedding plans during the pandemic restrictions and a supplier is claiming that your booking deposit is non-refundable, and/or that you must book them for another date, you should read every detail of the EU Unfair Contract Terms Directive (93/13/EEC) 2019 which you can find here:

https://ec.europa.eu/info/law/law-topic/consumers/consumer-contract-law/unfair-contract-terms-directive_en

For advice regarding your rights to a refund for any reason – pandemic or no pandemic – please contact a lawyer with experience in Consumer Law who will provide you with 30 minutes free advice to assess your case. Your local Credit Union provides free legal advice. Advice from any other source may not be in your best interests.

How Many Wedding Guests Can I Have During Lockdown ?

How Many Wedding Guests Can I Have During Lockdown ?

With pandemic restrictions now being extended in Ireland, anxious brides are now asking the dreaded question – how many wedding guests can we have now?  What are the maximum numbers allowed?  Does it include the photographer and our ceremony officiant?

There is so much misinformation about this subject online. In fact, just about everywhere this sugject is mentioned has got the answer completely wrong. Why? Because they don’t have a deep enough understanding of the marriage act or it’s interpretation.

I like to get my information direct from the most reliable source, so I contacted the GRO in Roscommon, and this is the advice that I received:

  • The act of marriage cannot ever be considered a social gathering.
  • Social gathering restrictions do not apply to a legal marriage ceremony itself, but they do apply to any non-legal wedding ceremony and any celebrations after a wedding or marriage ceremony.
  • Each wedding venue has the discretion to enforce their own health & safety policy regarding the maximum number of wedding guests.
  • All public health guidelines in force at the time must be followed.

This means that there is no limit on maximum numbers for a legal marriage ceremony other than what is defined by the health & safety policy of your chosen marriage venue, which is based on the size of the venue and their ability to social distance and comply with any public health requirements in place at the time. 

I hope that helps make things a bit clearer for you.  If you have any questions at all please don’t hestitate to get in touch.

Your Special Day

If you believe your ceremony should be an important part of your special day, no matter how big or small your requirements may be,

Please don't hesitate to get in touch so I can answer any questions you might have - and to find out if I am available on your big day..

I would be honoured to work with you.

What is an Interfaith Minister in Ireland ?

What is an Interfaith Minister in Ireland ?

The word “Interfaith” doesn’t always mean religious.  Interfaith describes an inclusive philosophy which welcomes people from all walks of life, regardless of their spiritual or religious beliefs (or none) without discrimination of any kind.

An interfaith Minister is a modern Spiritual teacher who also creates the most beautiful non-denominational tailor-made ceremonies to suit the requirements of the people.  An Interfaith Minister is able to create any style of ceremony from spiritual through to humanist style ceremonies, non-religious or mixed-faith ceremonies and everything else in between. With your choice of ceremony ideas and traditions included, to create your very own ceremony style. 

The modern interfaith Minister really is the Rolls Royce of ceremony officiants & celebrants due to their extensive experience and the diversity of the beautiful & meaningful personalised ceremonies they create & officiate, they really can offer you the most flexibility for your ceremony options.

There is no shortage of Interfaith Ministers in Ireland, although the biggest challenge is finding them as they don’t all have a website.  I am very fortunate that I was once a Software Engineer and Website Developer, so creating my own website comes naturally to me. 

The first thing is to do is find an Interfaith Minister who you really like (please pick me!) so you will need to interview them ether on the phone, or face to face, either in person or on Zoom.  That’s right, you need to interview them, they will be working for you!  Your ceremony is one of the most important parts of your special day, there is a huge difference between a good ceremony and a great ceremony.! 

I am a Spiritual Humanist, registered member of Enchanted Ceremonies and Earth Spiritualist Foundation.  With me as your ceremony officiant / celebrant I guarantee that you will have one of the greatest ceremonies you could wish for.  Every ceremony is my ceremony of the year.  I will work with you every step of the way to design the ceremony of your dreams, no matter how big or small, to ensure that your ceremony exceeds your expectations.  

You can read more about the legal requirements of getting married in Ireland right here in my article Legal Info

If you have any questions about getting married in Ireland please don’t hestitate to get in touch to find out if I am available on your chosen date.  I would be honoured to work with you.

Rev. Sharon Q.

Tel: 085 831 3437
Registered Solemniser of Marriages
Modern Spiritual Teacher, Musician,
Spiritual Humanist, Earth Spiritualist Interfaith Minister,
Visionary & creator of dreams

Modern Couples Getting Married in Ireland are Now Choosing an Interfaith Minister to Marry Them and Here’s Why!

Modern Couples Getting Married in Ireland are Now Choosing an Interfaith Minister to Marry Them and Here’s Why!

Interfaith Ministers are wedding celebrants supercharged and are the latest trend for modern couples getting married in Ireland.   This is because Interfaith Ministry is a modern style of Ministry that has been sweeping the world for its inclusive philosophy which welcomes people from all walks of life without discrimination or dogma, and Ireland is no exception. 

The Interfaith Minister is a modern spiritual teacher who has completed extensive studies in the areas of spirituality, world religions, human culture and interfaith ministry over many years.  This means that their skills and experience as authentic practitioners of the art of ceremony are impeccable.   The inclusive and interfaith philosophy which Interfaith Ministers abide by means they welcome people from all walks of life, without discrimination, 

So it’s thefore no surprise that Interfaith Ministers are now the celebrant of choice for modern couples in Ireland who believe that a unique & personalised legal marriage ceremony should be one of the most important parts of their special day.

Interfaith Ministers, like many Universalist organisations are not required to wear vestments or robes, unless they wish to do so for special cultural celebrations or VIP occasions.  They may wear an interfaith stole for their ceremonial duties but only if requested to do so by the couple or the family.

The non-denominational ceremonies created & conducted by Interfaith Ministers are designed to suit the unique requirements of each couple regardless of their belief in spirituality, religion or not.  This makes a marriage ceremony conducted by an Interfaith Minister truly charming and special no matter if its a shorter or longer ceremony, because each ceremony is designed to suit the unique ceremony style and requirements of the couple.

For couples who would like a unique & personalised, meaningful and special wedding ceremony in Ireland, the modern Interfaith Minister really is the Rolls Royce of ceremony officiants & celebrants. 

It is well known by those who have experienced one of the beauitful ceremonies led by Interfaith Ministers that the beautiful ceremonies they create & conduct are some of the most unique & special wedding ceremonies in the world.;  Because they are also inspiring and modern Spiritual teachers, a beautiful ceremony led by an Interfaith Minister certainly has an added air of unique graciousness, which really adds to the uniqueness and importance of the occasion even for a non-religious wedding ceremony..

Because of their genuine desire to help others throughout their life, Interfaith Ministers are generally those who hail from the caring, teaching, natural therapies or even formal ministry professions who felt a calling to further study in the area of spirituality and human culture in order to fulfill their wish to serve the community..

Due to the inclusive and interfaith philosophy of the interfaith body they are affiliated with, an Interfaith Minister is able to conduct unique ceremonies of any secular,, spiritual or religious style or any mixture of anything in between to suit the couples requirements.  This means Interfaith Ministers really can provide couples getting married in Ireland with the most flexibility for their ceremony design options and also with the locations they can be married at. 

It comes as no surprise that so many modern couples in Ireland are now choosing an Interfaith Minister to marry them with a beautiful unique & personalised ceremony designed to suit their own wishes and unique ceremony style, a ceremony which is also meaningful & special and among the best in the world.

Intefaith Ministers are most widely known for their beautiful and meaningful spiritual ceremonies but the inclusive philosophy they abide by means they are equally at home conducting secular and non-religous ceremonies for people from all walks of life.

What About the Legal Bits?

Interfaith Ministers are also HSE registered solemnisers and duly authorised to solemnise marriages in Ireland.

What this means for you is that with an Interfaith Minister as your ceremony officiant and celebrant your beautiful wedding ceremony will also be fully legal on the day if that’s what you want.

What Does it Cost ?

Costs vary between Ministers as some charge for travel and some don’t.  There is no extra cost for a legal marriage ceremony,, it will be the same cost as a non-legal ceremony.  

My own costs depend on time taken, and start at €295 for a micro-wedding of up to 10 people in total within 5kms of Cork City centre.  This is a much simpler ceremony as no PA system is needed so the amount of time spent on the day and preparations the night before are greatly reduced.  Average cost within 25kms of Cork City is €495 depending on the venue and what options are chosen.  For ceremonies conducted over 25kms from Cork City and beyond the average price is €595.  For this you can expect a unique & fully personalised ceremony and around 30 hours of time spent to provide you with a VIP ceremony experience.  A ceremony rehearsal the night before of up to 2 hours is €100.  There are other options for a simple and straightforward ceremony.  Please take these estimates as a guide only, – for an accurate quotation to suit your needs please get in touch for a quick chat to determine your exact requirements.

There are others who are charging a lot more, but please keep in mind that they may have more costs to cover including child care, that I don’t have to consider.

* All prices are current as of 1st July 2020 and are subject to change.

If you’d like to know more about the legal requirements for getting married in Ireland, please see the Legal Info page.

Marriage During Pandemic Restricted Periods

The value of Interfaith Ministers has become increasingly widespread for couples wishing to be married during pandemic lockdown restrictions.  This is because Interfaith Ministers are able to travel unrestricted to conduct a legal marriage throughout Ireland as Religious personnel and essential workers, where other marriage solemnisers who are not Religious personnel may not be permitted to travel during stricter lockdown restrictions.

Interfaith Ministers also have access to a many more venues for legal marriage during strict lockdown at times when hotels and other wedding venues may be closed to the public.  So if there are strick pandemic lockdown restrictions in place and your solemniser is unable to marry you, and you still want to be legally married if you already have your Green Folder, all you need is an Interfaith Minister and your two witnesses. 

The Interfaith Minister, like other Religous solemnisers, will have access to a number of additional venues which can be used for the purpose of legal marriage when hotels and other venues are closed due to pandemic restrictions.  You may wish to obtain permission for a ceremony during strict lockdown restrictions but your Interfaith Minister will be able to best advise you of any technicalities.

For information regarding the ceremonies conducted by an Interfaith Minister you should consult them directly as there is a minefield of wrong information being propagated online regarding the ceremonies conducted by Interfaith Ministers.

Peace of Mind

All Interfaith Ministers belong to a body with strict quality standards and a community of like-minded people working to support the community.  This is your guarantee of peace of mind that if the unexpected should happen, no matter what the circumstances you will have the benefit of a backup Interfaith Minister of equal calibre and kindness at no extra cost to you if your chosen Minister is not available due to unforeseen circumstances.

How to Find an Interfaith Minister

Many don’t have websites or social media presence because they are well known in their local communities through their ministry work..  This is where Google can be your friend.  You can search for “Intefaith Minister Dublin” or “Interfaith Minister Cork” or “Interfaith Minister Killarney” or what ever area you would like to be married, and you will find some..  Or ask your nearest holistic natural therapist for advice, because you just never know – they be an Interfaith Minister.

I create & officiate beautiful unique & fully personalised ceremonies to celebrate all of life’s special milestones for people from all walks of life.  I can create a ceremony for any occasion worthy of celebrating..

No matter if you would like a plain and simple ceremony, meaningful and special but without any fuss – or that fairytale ceremony with all the enchantment and magic,   I will work with you to help you to discover your unique ceremony style, and create the unique & very special ceremony of your dreams. 

Please feel free to browse my website for more information about the work I do, and of course please don’t hesitate to call me for a chat, and to see if I am available on your big day.  I would be honoured to work with you..

Rev Sharon Q.

Interfaith Minister, Modern Spiritual Teacher, Professional Musician, Registered Natural Therapist, Yoga & Meditation teacher, Community kindness volunteer, Visionary & creator of dreams.

Tel: 085 831 3437