Civil marriage ceremonies exceed religious ceremonies for the first time

During 2009, the number of civil marriages in Spain surpassed the number of church weddings, this situation being attributed to both an increased secularization and the economic situation.

In 2009, some 80,174 tied the knot via a church ceremony and 94,993 in civil ceremonies.

Back in 2000, there were 163,636 church or religious wedding compared to 52,225 being officiated by judges, mayors, councillors or other authorised figures.

In 2004, the gap was closing and there were 140,000 church weddings and 80,000 civil ceremonies and this was reduced even further in 2005 with 126,291 religious ceremonies and 81,206 civil ceremonies.

In 2007, civil marriages exceeded 91,000 while church weddings stood at 109,811.

Part of the shift has been put down to an increased secularization in Spanish society but the economic situation is also though to be playing apart, church weddings being a far more expensive option.

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