Yes! Marriage is now marriage! It’s not ‘same sex marriage’ or ‘marriage equality’… it’s just marriage.
Words do not express the happiness I feel. Having to say during a ceremony the words ‘Marriage, accordingly to law in Australia, is the union of a man and a woman…’ has always grated on me and many of the couples whom I married.
I remember a guest – an Uncle of the groom – coming up to me after the ceremony, thanking me for stating prior to the wording above that this was not the belief of his nephew, niece-in-law, or myself. When I stated this at the ceremony, there was a huge roar of applause from the guests. This had the Uncle in tears, and he explained that in all his years, he had never been to a wedding where he felt included, apart from this one.
Now I no longer will have to say a precursor in order to make guests feel comfortable. Nor will I have to be discriminatory towards anyone based on their sexuality. I can marry anyone! Love is love when it’s between two consenting people and those who want to make the commitment of marriage will now be allowed to do so.
I’ve always been proud to be a celebrant and I love my job with a true, absolute, deep and real passion. But today I love it even more.
I can now start receiving Notice of Intended Marriage from same-sex clients from the 9th December, which means I can start marrying same-sex couples from the 9th January. And I’m pretty sure that the first one I conduct where I say ‘Marriage, accordingly to law in Australia, is the union of two people voluntarily entered into for life’ will be momentous.
I’m signing off this blog with The Biggest Smile Ever, and a little bit of wet around my eyes.
Today I wrote to my MP, Wayne Swan, to ask him to help in the campaign for Marriage Equality in Australia. If you believe that consenting adults have the right to marry, then please check out the Equality Campaign website http://www.equalitycampaign.org.au/ and consider writing to your MP.
Dear Mr Swan MP,
As a local resident within your electorate, I wish to show my support for marriage equality in Australia.
I have many reasons why I believe in marriage equality
It’s simply unfair not to be able to offer marriage as an option to consenting adults, including the benefits both legally and personally that come from being married
I have many gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender friends and acquaintances who feel discriminated in our society enough without omitting their access to a basic human right
Finally (and this is the most important reason) I am a human being who believes that discrimination based on sexuality and/or gender identification is wrong in a civilized society.
It is time for change. The Marriage Act stipulates that marriage is between a man and a woman; this is outdated. We have numerous examples around the world where marriage equality has been introduced and, to my knowledge, not one single person has been struck by lightening as a result. In fact, I can’t even think of a good reason why anyone would be against it – I mean, surely this is just plain, simple, basic common sense?
I, as one voter, have little influence on the Government. But you, as a man of political connections, have the potential to help stop what is fundamentally discrimination. Please use this influence wisely.
There’s a saying in the ‘biz’ when you conduct baby namings, weddings and funerals that you do ‘hatched, matched and dispatched’ ceremonies.
Since becoming a celebrant in Brisbane, I’ve been predominately concentrating on the matched, with some hatched. And now I’m biting the bullet, giving up my day job and foraying into the world of funerals.
When I’ve told friends and family my plan, they have been very supportive, but I often hear them say; ‘Well, that’ll be less happy to do than the weddings.’ However, I don’t think so.
With the weddings I strive to give someone the very best experience of their life – celebrating among those who they love the most. And with funerals, I want people to have a similar experience. I want people to have a funeral which really celebrates them. I want to deliver a funeral or memorial or tribute which is genuine and true and which helps their loved ones to smile and reminisce of this person who was a part of their life. Yes, funerals are sad – it’s part of the grieving – but it’s okay to smile, laugh, groan as you remember the good times and the funny quirks to their personality.
I want to work with the grieving family or friends to produce a ceremony which feels genuine, real, fitting, honest, and helpful in the process of coming to terms with their death.
As much as I hope you’ll never have to use my services as a funeral celebrant, I also hope that if you do, the result will be a real celebration of your loved ones life, and as positive of an experience as possible.
Please feel free to contact me if you’d like to discuss this service further on 0478041227 or firstname.lastname@example.org