Agnostic Scotland is officially launched!

We would like to thank everyone who joined us last night at our launch party, for making the evening so very special and positive. The three of us left the lovely venue (thank you, Timberbush!) feeling abuzz with optimism and excitement about what the future holds for Agnostic Scotland, and so appreciate the warm reception you all offered.

Celebrants, photographers, and wedding suppliers came to support us along with interested community members and of course our wonderful friends and family. We are grateful to you all!

Our fabulous Chair, Linda Keys, kick-started the evening with a speech about the background and goals of Agnostic Scotland. Our desire to bring people together through our Community Connection Gatherings, to bolster our Community Fund and bring beautiful, person-centred and affordable ceremonies to those who would otherwise struggle to pay for them. Our plans to broaden the diversity of Agnostic Scotland and to build steering group of people, recruited based on merit, knowledge and skills, to ensure we reach all communities. And our vision to creating opportunities for more celebrants around Scotland to work with us as we broaden the reach of Agnostic Scotland.

Onie Tibbitt spoke about Agnosticism and what it means to admit that we don’t know everything, and that we are never likely to know everything. And how, in doing so as celebrants, we are able to be more respectful, more open minded and more accepting of the complex myriad of beliefs – or doubts – held by individuals, couples and families when it comes to the planning of their shared ceremonies.

Andrea Taylor lead the gathering through a beautiful ritual based on the ancient tradition of Clootie Trees, or Tree Dressing, and invited everyone attending to soak their ‘cloot’ (or natural cloth) into the seawater provided then tie it to the apple tree whilst making a wish, sending a merit or thought, of setting an intention, for themselves, for someone they love or for the wider world.

Lesley, who kindly agreed to sing at the launch, wowed everyone with an exquisite rendition of ‘Freedom Come All Ye’ – a song that we feel embodies our desire to work in respectful harmony and collaboration with all people.

Onie’s daughter pulled the name of the lucky winner of the free Agnostic Scotland Ceremony out of the hat and we were delighted to inform Claire Ritchie today that she can choose a ceremony of her choice during 2020.

Moving forward now, we are so excited to begin the process of reflecting on the positive energy of our launch and developing Agnostic Scotland in heart-centred ways to achieve the goals we have envisioned. And we are so excited to work with you along the way. Thank you again for being in touch, being so supportive and interested in Agnostic Scotland. See you all soon!

The beautiful clootie tree, ready to be planted in its new home!

1 day to go to the launch of Agnostic Scotland…

Tomorrow, we launch Agnostic Scotland, a new not-for-profit organisation bringing beautiful, people-centred Wedding, Naming and Funeral Ceremonies, and Community Connection Gatherings to Scotland. All surplus is reinvested into our Agnostic Scotland Community Fund and Community Connection Gatherings. Check out our Founding Statement.

We hope you’ve enjoyed our weekly blog posts and look forward to welcoming those who can join us at our Agnostic Scotland Launch tomorrow.

Sign up to be a Supporter

Like what you’ve read? We’d love to welcome you to our Agnostic Scotland family. Become a Supporter for just £2 per month, or £20 per year, and feel great about helping to bring affordable ceremonies and donations-based wellbeing workshops and Community Connection Gatherings to Scotland.

Be the first to hear about our news and events and have our eternal thanks for helping to bring what we believe is a wonderful and much-longed for approach to the forefront of Scotland’s life events ecosystem. Click on the links below to sign up:

Help boost our Community Fund for just £2 per month

Prefer to pay annually? Join for £20 per year

Join our Launch Party on 7th November in Edinburgh

RSVP here.

Win an Agnostic Scotland Ceremony

Sign up to our e-newsletter by the launch date and we will enter you into a prize draw to win an Agnostic Scotland Ceremony of your choosing in Edinburgh and the Lothians (or further afield if you are happy to cover travel and accommodation).  Winner will be announced at the Agnostic Scotland Launch Event on 7th November.

Sign up to our Agnostic Scotland e-newsletter and enter our prize draw

3 days to go to the Agnostic Scotland Launch…

Agnostic Scotland is a new not-for-profit organisation bringing beautiful, people-centred Wedding, Naming and Funeral Ceremonies, and Community Connection Gatherings to Scotland. All surplus is reinvested into our Agnostic Scotland Community Fund and Community Connection Gatherings. Check out our Founding Statement.

We’re more excited than we can say to be able to offer legal wedding ceremonies through Agnostic Scotland, as well as naming and funeral ceremonies, any other events of significance to you.

In addition to growing our Celebrant network, we’re hoping to grow our network across Scotland and reach more people through our Agnostic Scotland Community Fund and Community Connection Gatherings.

Interested in working with us?

During 2020, we will be accepting applications for a limited number of spaces from experienced Celebrants who wish to work with us. Initially we are prioritising applications from people who help us achieve our aim for a broader geographic spread throughout Scotland offering person-centred ceremonies and Community Connection Gatherings, and people who help us achieve our aim to become a truly diverse organisation. You need to have attended a recognised Celebrant Training course in the UK, have at least one year’s experience as a practicing Celebrant, and be able to provide client testimonials. Our interview process is rigorous and if you are successful we require you to attend additional in-house training and mentoring. Please do contact us if you are interested. At this stage we are simply collecting contact information from interested Celebrants and will be in touch as soon as we have finalised the application process.

We would also love to hear from outdoor instructors, yoga teachers, mindfulness coaches, and wellbeing practitioners who would like to get involved in helping to run our Community Connection Gathering programme, particularly outside Edinburgh and the Lothians.

Please do get in touch.

Win an Agnostic Scotland Ceremony

Sign up to our e-newsletter by the launch date and we will enter you into a prize draw to win an Agnostic Scotland Ceremony of your choosing in Edinburgh/East Lothian (or further afield if you are happy to cover travel and accommodation).  Winner will be announced at the Agnostic Scotland Launch Event on 7th November.

Sign up to our Agnostic Scotland e-newsletter and enter our prize draw

Join our Launch Party on 7th November in Edinburgh

RSVP here.

1 week to go to Launch: Join an Agnostic Scotland Community Connection Gathering

Only 1 week to go until we launch Agnostic Scotland, a new not-for-profit organisation bringing beautiful, people-centred Wedding, Naming and Funeral Ceremonies, and Community Connection Gatherings to Scotland. All surplus is reinvested into our Agnostic Scotland Community Fund and Community Connection Gatherings. Check out our Founding Statement.

Community Connection Gatherings

We love people… and gatherings… and one of our aims is to bring you all together to do some fun activities.

Join us! We’d love to welcome you to our Community Connection Gatherings. Where possible we get outdoors in nature for some walking, wild swimming, picnics and fun – and to help out with nature clean-ups and litter picks.

We’ll also be attending interesting events, talks, film screenings and workshops that are relevant to our values and of interest to our Supporters. As well as offering donations-based wellbeing workshops such as yoga, mindfulness and relaxation.

Agnostic Scotland Community Connection Gatherings are a wonderful way to meet others, relax in nature and enjoy social time.

As our network grows, we’ll be organising more get-togethers across Scotland. Some events are family-friendly, some for adults only. Please note that all activities are undertaken at your own personal responsibility and risk.

Where possible, we’ve tried to keep things free of charge. Where needed, we suggest a donation to help contribute to our costs. We’ll never turn anyone away if you aren’t able to afford the suggested donation.

See our upcoming events here.

Join us at our Launch Party

Win an Agnostic Scotland Ceremony

Sign up to our e-newsletter by the launch date and we will enter you into a prize draw to win an Agnostic Scotland Ceremony of your choosing in Edinburgh and the Lothians (or further afield if you are happy to cover travel and accommodation).  Winner will be announced at the Agnostic Scotland Launch Event on 7th November.

Sign up to our Agnostic Scotland e-newsletter and enter our prize draw

2 weeks to go to Launch: Discover Agnostic Scotland’s Community Outreach Plans

Only 2 weeks to go until we launch Agnostic Scotland, a new not-for-profit organisation bringing beautiful, people-centred Wedding, Naming and Funeral Ceremonies to Scotland. All surplus is reinvested into our Agnostic Scotland Community Fund and Community Connection Gatherings. Check out our Founding Statement.

Agnostic Scotland Community Fund

We believe strongly that everyone has the right to mark the milestones in their lives in the way that is meaningful to them. Our Values include offering affordable ceremonies to those who would otherwise find it hard to pay for them. In addition, through our Community Connection Gatherings we seek to offer a range of donations based wellbeing workshops and social events in communities.

If you are struggling to pay for your ceremony and you live in an area where Agnostic Scotland Celebrants are based, please contact us and, while we have the funds, we will do what we can to offer you an affordable ceremony. We hope as our network grows to be able to offer affordable ceremonies and wellbeing workshops across Scotland. Every ceremony we conduct contributes towards this foundation.

Become an Agnostic Scotland Supporter

For just £2 a month, or £20 a year, you can help us to realise our goal of providing affordable ceremonies through our Community Fund and Community Connection Gatherings across Scotland… and you’ll have our eternal thanks. Sign up by clicking below:

Help boost our Community Fund for just £2 per month

Prefer to pay annually? Join for £20 per year

Invitation to our Launch Event

WIN an Agnostic Scotland Ceremony

Sign up to our e-newsletter by the launch date and we will enter you into a prize draw to win an Agnostic Scotland Ceremony of your choosing in Edinburgh and the Lothians (or further afield if you are happy to cover travel and accommodation).  Winner will be announced at the Agnostic Scotland Launch Event on 7th November.

Sign up to our Agnostic Scotland e-newsletter and enter our prize draw

3 weeks to launch: Discover Agnostic Scotland’s Values

Agnostic Scotland is a new not-for-profit organisation bringing beautiful, people-centred Wedding, Naming and Funeral Ceremonies, and Community Connection Gatherings to Scotland. All surplus is reinvested into our Agnostic Scotland Community Fund and Community Connection Gatherings. Check out our Founding Statement.

Each week in the countdown to the Launch Event on 7th November, we will introduce you to a different aspect of Agnostic Scotland. This week, we invite you to explore our Vision and Values.

Our Vision

Our vision for Agnostic Scotland came about after many years of us individually offering Independent Ceremonies in Scotland and realising that there was a definite gap in the life event ecosystem of Scotland.

Increasingly, we were being asked by individuals, couples and families to conduct ceremonies that reflected and respected their multi-faceted, sometimes shared, often varied, and occasionally contradictory, beliefs and wishes. We were being asked to conduct Agnostic ceremonies. We’re proud to put individuals at the heart of their ceremonies and to be able to respond to their own unique blend of wishes, values and beliefs, whether that include elements of secular, faith-based, mixed-faith, or spiritual ethos.

One of our guiding principles is our belief that it is rational to admit our own human limitations and accept that we do not, and likely will not, have the answers to all things. Whilst fully supporting scientific reasoning, we believe that there will always be some aspects of the universe around us that we cannot explain.

We are therefore sensitive towards the needs and wishes of individuals who choose to seek meaning or place emphasis on their emotional connection to aspects of religious beliefs, spirituality, or faith-based heritage. An Agnostic ceremony is one which is centred on this principle of open-minded acceptance. This allows us to be entirely undogmatic and collaborative in our approach. And the tenet that we feel really sets us apart is our commitment to representing your beliefs within your ceremony, rather than those of our Celebrants. 

Our Values

We believe in living well, in harmony and equality with all others and with respect for our natural environment. 

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We are entirely undogmatic in our world view, endorsing no single religion or belief. 

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We are collaborative and non-judgemental. We respect the beliefs and values of individuals whether that include secular, mixed-faith, spiritual or agnostic beliefs. 

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We fully endorse and support scientific progress and rational thinking. However, we also accept our own human limitations and believe it is rational to declare that we do not know everything. There will always be some aspects of the universe and the world around us that will remain unexplained.

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We seek to bring communities together in a collaborative and non-judgemental way to build positive relationships, nurture individual and community health and well being, and protect and respect our natural environment.

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We believe that every family has the right to a beautiful ceremony to mark the milestones in their lives. Through our Agnostic Scotland Community Fund, we seek to support families who would otherwise be unable to afford the cost of a Funeral, Wedding or Naming Ceremony.

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WIN an Agnostic Scotland Ceremony

Sign up for our Agnostic Scotland e-newsletter to enter our prize draw

Join our Launch Party at 6-8pm on 7th November in Edinburgh

Please RSVP to let us know you are coming. We hope you can join us!

4 weeks to go until the launch of Agnostic Scotland…

Agnostic Scotland is a new not-for-profit organisation bringing beautiful, people-centred Wedding, Naming and Funeral Ceremonies, and Community Connection Gatherings to Scotland. All surplus is reinvested into our Agnostic Scotland Community Fund and Community Connection Gatherings. See our Founding Statement.

Each week until the Launch Party on 7th November in Edinburgh, we will be posting something new about Agnostic Scotland. This week, we invite you to…

Meet the Founder Celebrants

Win an Agnostic Scotland Ceremony

Sign up to our e-newsletter by the launch date and we will enter you into a prize draw to win an Agnostic Scotland Ceremony of your choosing in the Lothians (or further afield if you are happy to cover travel and accommodation).  Winner will be announced at the Agnostic Scotland Launch Event.

Sign up to our Agnostic Scotland e-newsletter and enter our prize draw

Save the Date! Join us for the Launch Party on 7th November

We hope you can join us! For more information, please contact us.

5 weeks to go until the launch of Agnostic Scotland…

We are super excited and proud to announce that in 5 weeks, we will be launching Agnostic Scotland, a new not-for-profit organisation bringing beautiful, people-centred Wedding, Naming and Funeral Ceremonies, and Community Connection Gatherings to Scotland. 

Agnostic Scotland is a not-for-profit organisation established by a group of Independent Celebrants who believe that families should be able to decide how and where they choose to mark the momentous occasions in their lives, however big or small, religious or secular, traditional or unconventional. All surplus is reinvested into our Agnostic Scotland Community Fund and Community Connection Gatherings. See our Founding Statement.

Agnostic Scotland Ceremonies

We believe in putting you at the heart of your ceremony. Every element of your ceremony is tailored to your own unique blend of wishes, beliefs and values, whether that be secular or include elements of faith-based, spiritual or agnostic ethos. All the words, rituals, music and traditions included are entirely your choice. 

Weddings, Life Partnership Ceremonies, Vow Renewals and Reaffirmations

Our Wedding Ceremonies celebrate you as a couple. From the telling of your story to the exchange of vows, the inclusion of rituals to the declaration of commitment your ceremony will joyfully reflect your own unique personalities and your journey so far. 

Celebration of Life, Funeral and Memorial Ceremonies

Our Celebration of Life, Memorial and Funeral Ceremonies are lovingly crafted to help you recall and celebrate memories of time spent with your loved one.

Naming, Welcoming and Family Celebration Ceremonies

Our Naming and Family Ceremonies are pure joy… reflecting the character of the small but mighty people involved. 

How do you want to celebrate?

Ceremonies can be funny-sweet, deeply meaningful, make-you-weep-while-you-laugh hilarious, heart-achingly poignant, timeless and grand, sincere and serious, gentle and thoughtful. They can take place in grand hotels or historic castles, on remote beaches or windswept hilltops, in gorgeous gardens, or your own home. 

It feels great as a celebrant to say “Yes! Let’s do what you want to do.. it is your ceremony!” 

Win a FREE Ceremony!

To celebrate our launch, we’re giving you the chance to win an Agnostic Scotland Ceremony… the ceremony could be a Wedding, Naming, Funeral, Celebration of Life, Vow Renewal, or any event that is meaningful to you.

Simply sign up to our e-newsletter by the Agnostic Scotland launch date – you’ve got five weeks – and we’ll enter you into a prize draw to win a FREE Ceremony of your choice in Edinburgh and the Lothians (or further afield if you are happy to cover travel/accommodation costs).

Sign up to our e-newsletter and enter our prize draw here

Save the Date for our Launch Party – Thursday 7th November, 6-8pm!