Symbolic rituals

Jumping The Broom

A Fabulous jumping the broom ceremony. Photo by Kerry Hargreaves Photography.

Jumping the broom is a tradition dating back to Pagan times and the days of Afro-American slavery. It symbolises the brushing away of the past and the sweeping in of new beginnings. A leap of faith into a new life. It usually takes place at the end of the ceremony.

One of the attendants passes the broom to the groom who makes a sweeping gesture before passing it to his bride. She then lays it on the ground. The celebrant invites everyone to count 1 2 3 JUMP! The happy couple then hold hands and jump over the broom then continue down the aisle to great applause. It`s great fun.

You may wish to appoint a page or bridesmaid to be broom bearer. This would work so well as part of a Harry Potter themed wedding!



Handfasting was traditionally a promise made between a couple for a year and a day. At the end of that time they could decide whether to marry or to go their separate ways!

The couple join hands and face each other. As they make their vows different cords are tied loosely around their clasped hands. Different colours hold different meanings.

You can be as creative as you wish with this one. Even invite friends and family to tie the cords!

Unity Candle


This is a beautiful but simple ritual that symbolises the joining of two people and two families.

At the beginning of the ceremony, the celebrant or possibly two family members light the two thin candles and place in their holders. Later, at a designated point, the bride and groom each take one of the candles and together light a larger one. Two bright but individual lights now brighter and stronger together.

This can easily be adapted into a memorial for family members not able to be present. 

You could even create your very own symbolic ceremony..........the only limit is your imagination!