The material for a reading may come from such varied sources...from Shakespeare to Springstien. A reading may be poetry or prose. It may be the lyrics to the song for your first dance. It can be from a spiritual source...to acknowledge the faith tradition of your families. Whatever you select, the words should have meaning to the two of you.
Wedding ceremony readings come in two major categories:
- words that define love and/or marriage
- words that convey good wishes or blessings on the couple
Either type of reading can add to the meaning and uniqueness of your ceremony.
Often a couple thinks of including a reading, and they get a cold sweat thinking their only options are boring and obscure chunks of words. Not so. Do an internet search and ask your officiant for suggestions.
As important as the selection of the reading is the selection of the reader. Your reader should be someone who is comfortable speaking before a group. The reader needs to have command of the material...having read it and rehearsed it. You might think of family or friends who are teachers, those who make presentations at work, performers, or community leaders.
It is an honor to be asked to participate in a couple's ceremony, so think of someone you wish to single out with your request they do a reading. Your reader can be a respected family elder or godparent. It can be someone you didn't ask to be in the wedding party but whom you want to be involved in a special way.
Sometimes the reader has a better idea of what to select than the couple does...so solicit their input, but in the end, the couple should like the reading and make the decisions themselves.
Be sure to introduce the reader to the officiant before the ceremony. The officiant will let the reader know how he or she will be introduced. There may be an opportunity to do a sound check with the microphone.
A suggestions from an officiant who insists on back-up for everything related to the ceremony: Have a printed copy of the reading available on the wedding day in case your reader leaves his or her copy at home. If the reader is using an electronic device for the reading...that's fine, just make sure it's available on paper somewhere handy...you know why! Dead batteries!
So don't wrinkle your brow when you think of a wedding reading...there is wonderful material out there just for your wedding.