Sometimes the wedding ceremony planning can take a backseat to the dress, flowers and all the other details of your special day, but don’t just let those precious moments fly by in a blur. Here are 6 things to consider in preparing a meaningful and memorable ceremony.
1. Think about your guests
You may think that your guests have simply resigned themselves to sitting through a ceremony so they can hit the open bar and dance the evening away. But the truth is that we all hunger for the meaning behind important milestones. Weddings symbolize hope, the future – and love. Is there anyone who doesn’t need to hear that? Couples cherish these moments to remind themselves of their own special day. So take time to think about what your guests could get out of your wedding ceremony.
2. It’s your Wedding Day
We can’t tell you how many times we’ve had to convince younger couples (and sometimes even remind more mature ones) that this is their day to celebrate their bond, their relationship, and that it can be exactly what they want it to be – and doesn’t have to be anything that they don’t want it to be. So take the time to consider who you are as a couple and what special elements you want to include in ceremony.
3. Tell your Love Story
What do you think will be remembered and talked about most? The candy bar? The table linens? Doubtful. People will remember your Love Story, what was expressed in words, symbols, and rituals, and all the elements that reflect the authenticity of who you are as unique individuals and as a unique couple. These are the things that resonate with people. Don’t feel pressured to do things that are not comfortable for you. If you are uncomfortable speaking in front of people, don’t write and read your own vows. All eyes are on you, so only do things that make you and your finance comfortable. The things that you consider important in life as individuals and as a couple – your core values and beliefs – should be woven throughout the ceremony. You are completely unique and have deeply held convictions. Express them.
4. Love Matters
Love is transcendent. It is a spiritual condition, and set apart from other human experiences. Your wedding is an opportunity to honor it as such, and to remind everyone present that Love is a force of nature, a force to be reckoned with. Love matters, and we all need to hear that.
5. Size doesn’t matter
Three hundred guests at a huge banquet hall or twenty guests in your backyard, your wedding is still a deeply meaningful milestone event – for you and your community. It isn’t a competition. So take the time to consider who is really important to be included in the celebration of your marriage.
6. Key Players
Take the time to consider who will officiate your wedding. A personal connection with the officiate will make your ceremony more personal. If you do not have a relationship with your officiate, take the time as a couple to meet and get to know each other. The ceremony is a great place to include other special people in your lives. A scripture or quote reading is a great place to incorporate a family member or special friend. If you have a special person that can sing or play an instrument (and who is tremendously talented) ask them to consider preparing a special song for your ceremony.
Finally, communicate your ceremony layout with your coordinator and officiate. Allow both of these individuals to help you think through all the details. Ceremonies should be discussed with your officiate at least one month prior to your wedding.