I am looking for a beautiful, quaint church in the West part of Ireland for my husband and I to renew our vows. We are not Catholic. Any suggestions?
I believe in Ireland that will only do a Marriage Blessing. I am Catholic and looked into a bit and all I was able to find was Marriage Blessings in Ireland. You may ask your concierge, travel agent, or local chamber in the town you are visiting.
Suggest you contact parishes of the Church of Ireland. It would really surprise me if you could do that at Catholic parish church, since neither of you are Catholic.
Catholic churches definitely won't let you renew vows in an active church if neither of you are Catholic - even if you aren't looking for a full blown Mass as part of your vow renewal ceremony. Instead of a church ceremony, have you considered an outdoor ceremony somewhere scenic (e.g., Aran Islands) in Western Ireland, or maybe a castle hotel (like Ashford or Ballynahinch) where you could have the vow renewal indoors or outdoors?
We are in the same situation; celebrating our 25th anniversary with a trip to the UK in a couple of weeks. We are only staying in Dublin for 3 days. I looked for an old church nearby and found a Catholic one about 8 km out of town, and emailed the rector directly, and asked if we could renew our vows. I'm pretty sure I mentioned we're Lutheran, but I also said we could say our vows to each other if it wasn't possible for him to "officiate." I just asked if he could open the church for us for a few minutes. He agreed cheerfully to meet us there; it's on a Tuesday morning. Maybe it's more of a "don't ask, don't tell" thing?
I agree with the above poster to make it a more informal request, a more last minute do it yourself say them to one another. As for an absolutely beautiful place is Gouganne Barra in West Cork. The church which is teeny inside and not that pretty inside sits on a small island in the middle of the lake there. The outside of the church are very picturesque there is a ruined church on the island as well. The are swans in the lake and surrounding mountains make for really nice photo opportunities. You could then go stay in Glengariff afterward another beautiful spot.
I agree with the previous poster about the Gougane Barra. If you love wild remote places, the West of Cork is one of the loveliest in Ireland.
My husband and I are thinking about doing the same thing. Either just pick a beautiful spot, spur of moment. Or a specific spot like the grounds of Holycross Abbey, as his great-grandfather, who immigrated to NYC was baptised there.