If you are interested in any of the following ceremonies, please contact the Center.
Traditionally in Buddhist countries, Buddhist clergy bless couples after marriage but do not officiate the ceremony itself. However, in the West it is common for Buddhist priests to perform weddings.
The clergy of Belmont Zen Center are licensed to perform weddings in Ohio and West Virginia. While our dharma hall could only accommodate a very intimate wedding ceremony, our clergy are happy to help with your marriage at the location of your choosing. In Belmont County, Ohio marriage licenses are provided by the Probate Court in St. Clairsville. In Ohio County, West Virginia marriage license are done by the County Clerk’s office in Wheeling.
Wedding service are available to any couple, regardless of gender or sexual orientation.
Funerals and Memorial Services
In the East Asian Buddhist tradition, clergy typically perform ceremonies for the deceased soon after death, at the time of cremation or burial, and 49 days after death. Antara-bhava (in Korean, jung-yu) refers to the intermediate state between death and rebirth, more commonly known in the West by the Tibetan word bardo. Traditionally special prayers are recited every seven days after the death, culminating with the 49-day memorial service. Our clergy will work with your family and funeral services provider on planning an appropriate commemoration.
Ceremony for Pregnancy Loss
Parents who experience a pregnancy loss through miscarriage or stillbirth often find that American culture does not provide them with a good way to mourn. Similarly, people who have been involved in an abortion may feel a need for some way to process this experience. This sort of grief may be recent, or may be something the person has carried with them for years.
In the East Asian Buddhist tradition, ceremonies have been developed to help parents to mourn this sort of loss. It began in Japan as the mizuko kuyō (literally translated, “water baby memorial rite”), and was adapted in Korea as the nak tae-a chondo-jae. The Center provides a program of ceremonies, adapted to American culture, which can be performed immediately after the loss or beginning on its anniversary. It provides a seven-week period in which the parent(s) can work through grief with clergy support.