"My philosophy is that committed love between two people creates a sacred union that adds a dimension of holiness to our world. This kind of relationship cannot be categorized by religion or culture, or defined by a person's sex or race. Love will not be ruled by prejudice and stereotypes. I've joined hundreds of couples in marriage, from all backgrounds, faiths and traditions and I support marriage equality." - Rev. Laurie Sue Brockway
A recent study showed that 37 per cent of Americans are in interfaith marriages. Unions between couples of different faiths and cultures are becoming more common every year as people from different backgrounds meet, fall in love and decide to marry.
As a New York-based wedding officiant, I have joined hundreds of couples from every background imaginable. In my wedding ministry, time and time again, I have met lovely people who clearly are meant for each other but who do not come from the same background or faith. They have found a way to embrace one another, and in most cases, each others families, despite any inherent challenges.
It has become clear to me that love and commitment come in many packages, shapes, sizes, shades, languages, backgrounds and faiths. Love simply does not limit itself to existing only between people who are of the same faith nor does it merely join together people who have the same skin tone or accents. And it does not insist that a man born in one part of the world must only love someone from his country or culture, nor that a woman born into a religious household will find her beloved in the faith of her family. Love does not even insist that partners be of different sexes.
Love is a force that transcends the limited thinking that we must “stick with our own kind.” Many modern men and women are coming to see that true love is a gift, even when an adoring, committed partner does not quite fit the ideal of our fantasies or arrive in the outer package or from the spiritual persuasion our parents imagined for us.
My philosophy is that love between two people is a sacred union and it adds a dimension of holiness to our world that cannot be categorized by religion or culture.
Are there challenges? Yes. But I have also witnessed many couples rise above them and successfully blend their beliefs into married life.
In addition to my commitment to uniting couples from all faiths and backgrounds in marriage, I put everything I know about creating meaningful weddings in my new book, "Your Interfaith Wedding."
Rev. Laurie Sue Brockway
New York City