A handfastening wedding ceremony inside Stonehenge, in Craig’s words:
My windscreen wipers are set to their maximum as I make my way through a torrential downpour along the M3 towards Stonehenge. Knowing where the weather’s coming in from, I’m keeping an eye to the west for any break in the clouds. My couple have traveled all the way from New York for a hand fastening ceremony within Stonehenge. As far as I’m aware, the Druids made no provisions in order to accommodate the weather. I arrive an hour early and thankfully the skies are brightening up and blue skies are coming in as predicted. It’s turning out to be a beautiful afternoon.
I’m not a particularly religious person, but weddings are a definite spiritual occasion. A spiritual ceremony is an essential part of any wedding. No matter what your beliefs or traditions may be, the one factor all weddings share is a blessing based upon your faith. Faith is the ability to believe in something greater than yourself and that we all have an ultimate purpose, either collectively or as individuals. Stonehenge is a spiritual mecca for Pagans across the world. Having traveled from New York, Robert and Anna have placed a lot of belief in their faith and a lot of faith in their belief.
I feel greatly honoured to be allowed to capture such a spiritual moment on such a historic site. Access to the Stones is only allowed by special request, and even then strict guidelines need to be adhered to. Without simply walking to the middle, Robert and Anna, along with their guests, have to circle the stones several times with their priest and priestess to appreciate the moment and significance of the occasion. Once inside blessings are made to the elements and the four cardinal points, with emphasis on the sun which rises in the east and sets in the west. The occasion was a true blessing in every sense of the word. The golden light cast by the setting of the sun added a lovely warm tone to the proceeding. A hand fastening is conducted which symbolises the bond that the couple have committed to each other. the ceremony is brought to a close with the couple jumping over a broom together, finally symbolising their leap of faith together. The occasion was a true blessing in every sense of the word.