Creating your ceremony is about finding the right elements that speak to who you are as a couple and where you are in your faith journey. This means that you may want to honor your faith as well as describe where you are in life. There are plenty of things to consider when creating your wedding ceremony. Some of those things are your faith background, where you live, who will be involved in your wedding ceremony, and even where it will take place. The setting, for example, may allow for more creativity or activities that may not be available everywhere.
Creating Your Ceremony
The first thing you will want to do when creating your ceremony is to write your wedding vows. See my article here for help with writing your vows. This is the best first step because it is meaningful and it will take some time to complete.
Next, you will want to find the right pastor for you. For many, their pastor will be their local church pastor based on a relationship that has been formed through the local church community. For others, finding their pastor means reaching out to a family member, friend, or someone who comes recommended by a friend.
Finding the pastor early in the process because he/she may have important requirements regarding pre-marital counseling and preparation. They might also ask you to complete some simple tasks like having lunch with a couple whom you admire. Give them a chance to chart a course with you that will prepare you for your special day. Creating your wedding is a joint process that will involve the couple and your community as well.
After your vows are written and you have chosen a pastor, and assuming that you have already found a venue 1 year before your wedding, next you will want to decide how to structure your ceremony. This process involves deciding what parts you would like included. For example, if you have a close family member or friend who sings and you would like to include them in your special day having them sing would be a great way to include them and also fill a very important part of the ceremony.
Creating your ceremony is about honoring God and expressing your faith while doing so. It’s also about playing to your strengths. If you know someone who is an excellent reader or speaker for example you should ask them to participate based on those skills.
Here are some ideas on parts of your ceremony for a faith-based wedding.
Introduction of Couple
Sermon/Charge to the Couple
Exchange of Vows
Exchange of Rings
Announcement of Couple
After you decide on the structure of creating your ceremony and you have thought about who will participate in your ceremony next will be assigning roles. You will want to start with the toughest parts of the ceremony such as those parts that will be harder to ask someone to do at the last minute if you need a replacement. In addition to the paster whom you have already asked far ahead of time, you will want to invite your musicians, wedding party, and be sure to have all of your vendors scheduled far in advance.
Wedding photographers are booked especially in advance. The better the photographer the farther out they will be booked. This is technically not a part of your ceremony but they are a critical part of your wedding. Once you schedule your sought-after vendors and ask your wedding party to serve in roles such as guiding your family through the processional you can continue to add the details to your special day.
And so, while creating your ceremony, securing people for each part of the ceremony is important because that depends on other people’s schedules. By the way, you can have backups to some parts of your ceremony but not others. You may be able to ask an usher to sing or read scripture for example but it will be much more difficult to find a pastor or a caterer. Having a backup plan for each role in case of an emergency will be helpful just in case.
Feel free to check back soon for more ideas on setting up your wedding ceremony!