Today, I accompanied my daughter to the wedding of one of her middle/high school friends. The weather was beautiful. The setting, in a stone and wood pavillion overlooking part of a state park in the Finger Lakes, was lovely. The bride and groom were glowing, just as you would expect with a young bride and groom.
What was different was the ceremony, which was Wiccan. Having never been to a Wiccan ceremony, I was curious about how it would unfold. Wicca is a nature-based religion, so the ceremony included elements of nature. There was a lot of focus on the symbolism and blessing of the rings. The rings were blessed with earth, fire, water, and air, each of which also represented one of the four directions. The vows focused on mutual love and care, as the rings were exchanged. The final element of the ceremony was a literal tying of the knot, as woven cords representing the two families of origin were draped around the hands of the couple and tied to symbolize their union.
During the couple’s first dance, a mother sparrow flew into the pavillion with food in her beak. She alighted only a few feet away from where they were dancing, remaining there for about thirty seconds, before flying up to the rafters and over to her hungry chicks in a nest hidden in the base of a lighting fixture. Another blessing from nature.