Why Do Nuns Wear Wedding Rings?

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When someone decides that she want to be a nun, she requires leaving the usual life behind. Nunhood is not something simple. It requires a lot of dedication and sacrifice. They require to follow a completely new set of rules. One of the things that nun needs to follow is they must not marry or be in a sexual relationship. But you will still see some nuns are wearing wedding rings. But why do nuns wear wedding rings?

If you are wondering why the nuns wear wedding rings, keep following the article. In the below part of the writeup, we will let you know what can be the reasons behind that. Along with that, we will also discuss some other important things related to the topic.

Before We Begin: A Bit More about the Nun

Before we discuss why they wear the ring, let’s know a bit more about the nuns. We all see them regularly but a lot of us do not actually know what it means to be a nun. Generally, the nun is a person who is a member of a religious community. And, a nun requires to commit his life, chastity, poverty, and faith for the religion. We usually know the nun as part of the Christian or Catholic religion. You will be shocked to know that there are nuns in other religion that includes Judaism, Buddhism, Taoism, etc.

The day of nun consists of praying, taking care of the church, and doing some other charitable works. Although it seems easy, becoming a nun is one of the hardest things to do. Remember we have mentioned chastity earlier? This word means you cannot be in a marriage or sexual relation when you are a nun. This is one of the very few sacrifices that you need to do for becoming a nun. It can take a year or more than that to be a nun.

Some of us think that the word nun and sister is same. Well, there are some differences between the nun and sister. Nuns are the ones who take serious vows to do the sacrifice and follow a simple life dedicated to God. In fact, they need to commit their whole life to religious study and prayers. On the other hand, sisters don’t require going through such serious commitments. Instead, they commit to a simpler life and mainly work for the outreach, charity, and evangelism of the church.

Why Do Nuns Wear Wedding Rings?

As we said earlier, nuns are not allowed to marry. But why do some of them still wear the wedding ring? Is it something like they are breaking the rules of the nun-hood? Well, that’s not right. Although the nuns are prohibited from marrying, some of them wear a ring to signify something. Once you know it you will surely respect the nun more. The wedding ring the nun wear is to symbolizes that they are the bride of Christ.

They dedicated their life and commit them to the church and Christ. Being a nun also means you are the bride of Christ. The nun was the ring to show their devotion, fidelity, and sacrifice for marrying Christ. Sometimes the wedding ring also symbolizes their order nr the community. One thing you might also notice is that the nun wedding ring is more simplistic than the usual wedding ring you see out there.

The nun's wedding ring might feature engraving and they can be made of materials like gold, silver, or related materials. Typically, the ring of nuns engraves some Latin phrase or religious symbols. Do you know the nun gets the wedding ring through a ceremony sometimes? It is also the time when she professes her bow.

The marriage ceremony can be followed by a mass where the nuns join with garb and veils in their bodies. They can also hold wreaths. They can get the ring during she professes the vows. Sometimes the ceremony is made like the usual ceremony to emphasize more.

History of Nun Wedding Rings

Nun wearing the wedding ring is not something new. It has been practiced since the ancient period. As per New Advent Catholic Encyclopedia., the history of nuns wearing the ring starts as early as the 300s. A person named St. Ambrose mentioned that the ring is to make the nun reminds them about their heavenly marriage.  St. Ambrose lived around 374 to 397. Some information about the wedding ring of the nun is also found in Medieval Bishops in the 12th century.

When the nun dies, their wedding ring is buried with them as per the Black Veil Article on the Global Oneness website. However, the ritual can be different in some orders. Sometimes the wedding ring is given to the other nun when one dies.  

Related Questions

In Which Hand the Nun Wear the Wedding Ring?

Usually, the nun needs to wear the wedding ring on their right left hand. The rule is mentioned in the “The Book of Common Prayer”. The book was used by Anglican Church from around 1549 and it includes the common prayer books as the name suggests.

Sometimes the nun also wears the ring on the right hand. That is because usually the married in real life wear the ring on the left hand. As the nun is not married, rather devoted to Christ, they wear the ring on the right hand.

Can Nun Wear Other Jewelry?

Well, it depends on the community and orders. You might find some nuns wearing a necklace that also includes a large silver cross. Usually, the Franciscan nuns follow this style. Usually, the nuns don’t wear anything else as part of living a simplistic life.


Being a nun is not an easy journey. It requires going through a lot of hardship and leaving the usual life behind. Moreover, becoming a nun requires sacrificing the peace of the earth to be in peace in the hereafter. If you have been thinking about why do nun wears wedding rings, we hope you will find the answer in this article.