Getting married in the Church of Scotland is a popular choice for couples who want something more than a civil ceremony.
More than 4,000 couples chose to be married by a Church of Scotland minister in a religious ceremony last year. In 2015, 29,691 marriages were solemnised in Scotland. More than half of that number—15,583—involved civil ceremonies, both inside and outside of a Registry office.
Church of Scotland marriages topped the list of ceremonies conducted by religious and beliefs-based celebrants with 4052 couples married. The Humanist Society was next with 3,378 couples married, followed by the Roman Catholic Church with 1,438 marriages.
Both churches and the Humanist society conducted fewer marriages last year than in 2014.
The Church of Scotland married 4,505 couples in 2014. The Humanist Society married 3,551 couples. The Roman Catholic Church married 1,555 couples in 2014. Other churches, mosques, spiritualist and pagan groups also conducted marriages but on a smaller scale.
Rev Norman Smith, Convener of the Mission and Discipleship Council, said: “When couples stand in church where generations have stood before pledging their love to one another, it is a reminder that human love endures. Standing before God is a reminder that the Christian God is a God of love who delights in people.
“The Church of Scotland has always stood with the people of Scotland and helped them take this step together.”