My focus for my last few blogs has been about the importance of celebrating Rites of Passage. Most of my work has been developing wedding ceremonies, but I also as of late, have been getting requests for Baby Blessings. This trend is caring over into other non-religious ceremonies, such as Baby Blessings. Since most of my couples are not affiliated with a house of worship, they not only need a officiant to marry them, then now need an officiant to bless their baby. I had the opportunity this year to develop and perform a couples wedding as well as their 10 month old daughter's Baby Blessing-all in the same ceremony. At our initial consultation they brought along their daughter who at the time was 7 months old. I knew they didn't belong to a house of worship so I had a feeling they didn't have any formal welcome for her. I suggested since their entire family and friends would be at the wedding, why not include as a unity ritual their daughters arrival and the joining of the three of them.
The idea was perfect for them, and the duo of a marriage ceremony and baby blessing was beautiful. It probably is one of my favorite ceremonies I worked on this year. A marriage and baby blessing are two monumental rites of passage. They symbolize re-birth, vows, and joining of lives, so it made sense to wrap these two together. The first half of the ceremony was all about the couple, the love for each other, their promises and vows to each other, the recognition of their family and friends presence and the importance of those relationships. The second half I included a water anointing blessing for their daughter. This also included vows from the couple to their child. Their unity ritual was the coming together of these three people as a united family. What better way to start a marriage with all the people surrounding you with their love and support and the child of your dreams. After I pronounced them husband and wife, I looked at them take their walk down the aisle, holding their beautiful daughter. It was a moment I will never forget-and I have a feeling they won't either.