June 6, 2006. Written by Paula Jones
All the inspiration you need for choosing fabulous church wedding ceremony readings
If you have chosen to have a church wedding service, you will need to choose suitably religious wedding readings and you may also have the option of including a secular, (non‐religious), reading too.
Ideally, all your readings will reflect to everyone how much you love your husband or wife‐to‐be… but without being too cheesy!
Before your mind goes blank and you feel the familiar onset of wedding planning panic setting in though, we can reassure you that choosing your church wedding readings will be easy and the only rule is that you must make sure you have had them approved by your minister beforehand.
Let’s start with Bible readings, because if you are having a church wedding, you will probably want to include at least one and the minister performing the ceremony will certainly encourage you to do so.
Before you go frantically thumbing through the Bible for inspiration, bear in mind that the very best way to get started with choosing your Bible reading, is to ask the church minister’s advice.
Ultimately the choice of Bible texts is up to you, but clergy are always happy to provide guidance and the practice of choosing readings varies not only between Christian churches, but also within them, so the minister who will be conducting your church ceremony is the best person to ask.
They will explain that there are three clear themes that are common to Biblical readings for a church wedding, which are; marriage blessed by God, Love is all you need and Hints for a happy life. They can then guide you to the passages you might like to choose that reflect these themes – not as hard as you feared, is it?
For more information, you can also take a look at our guide to common themes in Bible readings, and also a selection of Old Testament readings, New Testament readings, Biblical readings and religious readings.
Moving on to additional non‐religious readings, again the best thing to do before you start your search is discuss your options with your minister.
Exactly how many readings you can have and how secular the text of your chosen readings can be, will depend on the minister and church in question.
For example, a very traditional High Anglican vicar might allow you to choose a passage from Shakespeare, but will draw the line at modern poetry, whereas a vicar with a more relaxed approach might allow a much wider range of texts, music, song lyrics or book extracts.
Whatever approach your minister takes though, they will want to make sure that the readings don’t undermine the Christian view of marriage, so always make sure your choice is approved by them before the big day.
Then the search begins!
The best way to find a suitably romantic reading that will make all your wedding guests green with envy at how clever and in love you are, is to raid your bookshelves, head for the library, or look online for inspiration.
You could use an extract from your favourite book or poem, some lyrics from a song, a specialist wedding reading, an extract from our book, Wedding readings, poems & vows or some words especially written for the day, the choice is yours!
Start with taking a look at our selection of non‐religious readings, non‐religious readings and more non‐religious readings.