Love Stories: Mike and Patricia’s Traditional Irish Wedding Blessing

Irish Wedding Blessing knappogue castle

Today’s couple Mike and Patricia from Massachusetts, chose Knappogue Castle in Co. Clare for their Irish Wedding Blessing.  It is no coincidence that they picked this particular castle as it is the ancestral home of their MacNamara Clan. This Medieval tower was built by Sean MacNamara in 1467 and it was the perfect setting for their beautiful ceremony and evening banquet. Their Celebrant was Mayo Gaelgeoir and Broadcaster Joe Byrne from Marry Me Ireland and he delivered a traditional Brehon Handfasting Ceremony. They couple told us, “Joe told our story during the ceremony as though he had known us all our lives. It was mesmerising.” Not only did Joe perform the ceremony but he also played a traditional Irish air in the flute. 

Irish Wedding Blessing

As part of their ceremony the couple had traditional Irish Claddagh rings made and Patricia wore a custom ring with her and Mike’s birthstones and the stone for December: the month that Mike asked Patricia to be his best friend for life! Mike and Patricia are both extremely proud of their Irish Ancestry and their heritage has played a huge part in their lives. These rings remind them of their bond and of their roots every day.

Claddagh Rings Irish Wedding Blessing

The couple us that they met when Mike’s brother asked him to drop a snow blower over to Patricia’s house. There was an instant and mutual recognition of a soul connection. That was back in the winter of 2012. That March they went out and had their first meet up for a coffee. They just ‘clicked’, their conversations were endless and there was nothing they couldn’t talk about. They were in a very similar place in life, a crossroads, at the cusp of change. Their old patterns no longer fitted them and it was time for a new life, richer in meaning and with deeper connections. Their souls longed for a true love and their wish was granted. They had finally found the one who was on their team, who worked in harmony and was also a supportive companion.

Irish Wedding Blessing

They had a handfasting ceremony which is where the expression ‘Tying the knot’ came from. The wrists are wrapped in ribbons and it is said that just a knot becomes stronger under pressure so to does a loving bond. This ritual can be used in a wedding blessing ceremony, a vow renewal or a traditional marriage ceremony. It was, in ancient times, a betrothal ritual for a marriage of one year and one day. Here at Marry Me Ireland are seeing a huge resurgence in the popularity of this Pre-Christian marriage rite (and we love it!).

handfasting wedding blessing

That evening they celebrated with their friends from Canada, California, Florida, Massachusetts and Ireland. There was a regal banquet, wine and merriment with plenty of tunes from Joe and The MacNamara Band.  

Irish Wedding Blessing

Traditional Irish music rang out through the Halls of Knappogue Castle, from flute to Irish Uilleann Pipes.

American Irish Wedding

Mike and Patricia said that their wedding planner Annie Byrne from Aislinn Events was wonderful and took care of every detail and sourced all of their suppliers. Thank you guys for allowing us to share you special moment with us and thanks to your photographer for the images.

We welcome people from all across the globe and are delighted to deliver that special Irish element into a couple’s love story. We meet our couples over Skype and can plan the perfect ceremony for them anywhere in Ireland. If you would like to be married in Ireland, have a Vow Renewal or a Blessing Ceremony just get in touch.  


Wedding Venue: Knappogue Castle, County Clare. 

Wedding Celebrant: Joe Byrne from Marry Me Ireland