More civil than church weddings in 2018

marriage newly wedNewly weds near a river. Photo:

For the first time ever, there were more people who had secular weddings than were married in church last year. More than 400 chose civil marriages.

Of the total of 20,950 happy couples who were married last year, 8,050 chose civil marriages.

That was 433 more than those who married in church showed figures from Statistics Norway (SSB).

The number of couples who married in 2018 were 1,150 fewer than the year before. Compared to 2017, there were still 200 more married people, and 500 fewer who married in church.

Marriages abroad (where there are not numbers that distinguish between civil and ecclesiastical ceremonies) decreased by 750 to 3,500. Other non-religious communities (such as humanists) accounted for nearly 1,800 marriages last year, somewhat down from the previous year.

The number of same-gender couples who were married was, in 2018, at about the same level as the previous year, 311 in total. There was a decrease in the number of female couples, and an increase among men who married men.

From 2018, civil marriage has been a municipal responsibility. Before, it was the courthouse or magistrate who was responsible.

The number of ecclesiastical weddings has declined sharply since 2000, when a total of 14,228 couples were married in church. The number of civil marriages has not increased correspondingly, but
marginally in recent years.

© NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today

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