February 22, 2011

Humanist weddings overtake Roman Catholic ceremonies

by Jan Harris

In Scotland more people are choosing a Humanist wedding than a Roman Catholic wedding for the first time.

According to the Registrar General for Scotland’s provisional data on marriages by denomination, humanist weddings were the third most popular in the country last year, increasing by 35 per cent to 1,706.

The number of Catholic weddings remained the same, at 1,506.

Civil ceremonies were the most popular, growing 1 per cent to 11,430 between January and September last year, while the Church of Scotland was the second most popular choice, with 5,013 weddings.

Humanist weddings were legalised in Scotland in 2005 and there are just five other countries in the world where they can also be legally conducted: Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Norway and parts of the USA.

In England and Wales, Humanists often marry at a Register Office in a civil ceremony and then have a Humanist wedding at which they can choose their own venue and express their vows in their own words.

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