What is the typical method of marriage for Wiccans? When it comes to times of celebration, what occasions are considered significant for Wiccans and Christians? In this article, these questions and more will be answered regarding religious influences, unique rituals, and a woman’s role within these two religions.
Wicca has ancient roots connected to Celtic and Norse pagan religion, whereas Christianity follows in line with the beliefs of Hebrew monotheistic religion, as well as Greco-Roman philosophy and religion.
When Wiccans marry, they undergo a practice called handfasting, which is a Neopagan ceremony centered on either a permanent or temporary wedding arrangement. Interestingly, the term of ‘handfasting’ has a history dating back to Middle to Early Modern English. Before becoming a part of the religion, Wiccans will also enter an initiation.
As for Christianity, the act of marriage is quite important, while followers also hold baptisms and confirmations in high regard. A baptism is a ritual act that uses water as part of the process of creating a full member of the Church. A great deal of Christians follow this ritual, which includes Roman Catholics, Anglicans, Eastern Orthodox, Lutherans, Methodists, and Presbyterians. It is not uncommon for the above religions to also baptize infants. However, other Christian faiths do not believe in the practice of baptizing one while still an infant. They feel that those eligible for baptismal should have first exhibited a personal faith in Jesus Christ.
Prime Days of Worship
Sunday is a regular day of worship for Christians. This is when church is most attended and many consider it a day of rest. On the other hand, Wiccans count full moons (known as the 13 Esbets that occur each year) as important days.
Time for Celebration
The major holidays associated with the Wiccan faith is Samhain (a festival observed at the end of the harvest season within the Gaelic culture that is now linked to Halloween) and Beltane (a festival that usually takes place on the first of May and was traditionally celebrated on the first day of summer in locations, such as Ireland, Scotland, and Isle of Man. Equinoxes and solstices also play an important role in the celebration aspect of Wicca.
As for Christianity, you will find Lent, Easter, and Christmas rather important to followers. Throughout the year, other major feasts will take place. Those who strictly follow Lent will enter a 40-day fast and prayer that takes place before Easter. According to the Bible, the 40 days are meant to serve as symbolism for the time that Jesus spent in the desert, as he withstood the temptation of Satan. Depending on the church you belong to, the 40 days are calculated differently.
A Woman’s Role
When it comes to religious leadership, women are accepted in all traditions of Wicca. All traditions of Wicca embrace women in secular leadership. Christians accept women within a religious leadership role in some denominations, while all denominations accept women in secular leadership.