Photos: UK’s first Pagan same-sex wedding
A same-sex couple have become the first in the UK to legally marry in a Pagan ceremony.
Tom Lanting and Iain Robertson, 34 and 39, literally tied the knot in Edinburgh ceremony yesterday.
The pair – who are both Hedge Witches – married in a ceremony that involved invoking the elements of earth, air, water, fire and spirit, casting a circle, exchanging rings and binding the couple’s hands.
The newlywed couple said: “Getting married in a legal Pagan ceremony means so much to both of us.
“The new equal marriage law means that we finally have equal recognition and acceptance of our relationship, and it opens the door for all LGBTI couples to take the same step.
“As Hedge Witches we always wanted to have a Pagan marriage ceremony in line with our beliefs and it was really important to us to be able to share this ceremony with our friends and family.”
Scotland is the only part of the UK where minor religious bodies including Pagans are permitted to marry, with hundreds of opposite-sex marriages conducted since 2005.
Louise Park of The Pagan Federation, who acted as the pair’s celebrant, said: “We feel that, if any couple wish to, they should be able to make their marriage vows before their own personal Gods, friends, and family, in a religious ceremony tailored to suit their own beliefs.
“I am absolutely over the moon to have been able to conduct Scotland’s – and the UK’s – first Pagan same-sex marriage for Tom and Iain, who hold a special place in the hearts of Scotland’s Pagan community.”
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Tom French of the Equality Network said: “We were delighted to be able to attend the UK’s first Pagan same-sex marriage.
“Religious and belief groups played an important role in the campaign for equal marriage and today’s ceremony is a mark of equality and freedom of belief in Scotland.
“The new law was not just about ensuring equality for LGBTI people, but also securing greater freedom of belief for the many religious and belief groups who want to conduct same-sex marriages, in line with their deeply held beliefs, but were previously denied the right to do.
“These groups, and the same-sex couples that want a religious or belief marriage in Scotland, now have their rights respected.”
(Photos: Cherrie Coutts Photography)
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