Surge in popularity for Spiritual Ceremonies

Vinnie Civil Ceremonies

Recent CSO figures show that non-church weddings have soared in popularity making up over 50% of overall weddings in Ireland.  Traditional Roman Catholic weddings made up 43.6%; Civil Weddings 31.6%, Humanist 9.4%, Church or Ireland 1.4%, other religions 6.0 while the Spiritualist Union of Ireland now stands at 8% of all Irish weddings.  Outside of a civil marriage, Spiritualist Union of Ireland weddings were the ceremony of choice for same sex couples making up 16.6% of all same-sex weddings in Ireland for 2019.

The number of couples choosing Humanist and Spiritualist Union of Ireland ceremonies is increasing. A Humanist ceremony was the choice of 1,813 opposite-sex couples and 100 same-sex couples in 2019, while 1,512 opposite-sex couples and 106 same-sex couples opted for a Spiritualist Union of Ireland ceremony. Last year, Spiritualist Union of Ireland ceremonies saw a growth of 22% over 2017 figures, growing another 13% in the 2019 figures just released. Over the last 10 years, Spiritual Ceremonies have celebrated nearly 10,000 weddings with couples from all over Ireland and the world. What makes them popular is that the ceremony is “created “with you, for you and about you”.  With a team of over 40 celebrants based all over the country, Spiritual Ceremonies help couples say I do in a warm, personal ceremony.

We spoke to Vinny Whelan a Dublin based celebrant from Spiritual Ceremonies to learn more about what makes a Spiritual Ceremony so special. “I believe the increase in couples opting for Spiritual Ceremonies is down to the freedom that comes with this type of Ceremony. They can choose whatever music, readings or poems they want. They can include family and friends and this makes their Ceremony even more personal. Couples want to feel relaxed and comfortable with the person marrying them so I meet with them before their Ceremony and we get to know each other, I find out exactly what the couple want for their Ceremony and that is what I put together for them. Every couple has a different story and this is part of what makes every Spiritual Ceremony I perform totally unique. During our meeting I explain in detail the legalities involved, how to give your notice of intent to the HSE, explain all ceremony options, offer sample
readings, prayers, poems and anything else a couple can include. Ultimately the Ceremony is all about the couple and what they want. We are thrilled to see another increase in the number of couples choosing a Spiritual Ceremony for their special day and would like to say a huge thank you to all our couples past, present and future.”

For more information on Spiritual Ceremonies, you can visit their website

Sarah Brooks

Sarah Brooks

Sarah has worked in marketing and content creation for many years. In her role at Newsgroup, she is the online editor of with a particular interest in local news and events. Sarah also works closely with our editorial team on our printed editions in Tallaght, Lucan, Clondalkin and Rathcoole/Saggart. If you have a story and would like to make contact please email Sarah at


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