Who should you choose to read at your wedding?
I love it when other people get involved in the ceremony. (But only if they have been invited to do so by the couple, if they are just randoms then it can be a bit awkward.) But who do you choose and most importantly, what do you choose for them to read, and maybe even more importantly, do you let them do the choosing?
So let’s take these decisions one by one.
Who should you choose?
I often see a lot of subtle diplomacy deployed here. ‘Important’ roles are distributed amongst the best friends and family members – maid of honour, best man, bridesmaids, dad/mum/brother walking down the aisle. But oops, the groom has TWO best friends, the bride has THREE BFF’s and there’s a stepdad or a spare brother, how are they going to be presented with a starring role when there just aren’t enough to go round? “I know!” You cry, “We’ll get them to do a reading!” So this is how sometimes your second, but no less significant, best friend gets a reading foisted on her/him when quite frankly they would rather eat their own leg than stand up on one of the most important days of your lives and read a slushy poem.
What’s the answer then? In my humble opinion, if you haven’t got anyone in your wedding party or guest list who can stand up and deliver (key phrase right there) a reading or slushy love poem in a way that shows how much this person loves and adores you both AND so that everyone else can hear it, then shelve the idea. There are a gazillion ways in which significant people can be involved in your ceremony that are meaningful and less painful. But here’s another thing; just because someone already has a starring role doesn’t mean they can’t or shouldn’t also do a reading. I like to think that everything we do in our ceremony is for a purpose and holds meaning, therefore if your maid of honour, or Mum or Best man would be a great person to share some wisdom, romance or humour with a reading, then they should absolutely be the person to do so. So don’t let this equal sharing of roles business cloud your judgement.
Who should choose the reading?
Here’s another minefield to navigate. If you are choosing the right people for the right reasons to read something in your ceremony, then all things being equal they should be able to choose a poignant, appropriate and wonderful reading which will resonate your socks off. Maybe they will even write something for you: the uncle that’s been happily married for 50 years shares the secrets of marriage or the sister that does a mash-up of Winnie the Poo and Metallica (BEST reading I’ve ever heard). You get the picture. If you are nervous about what they might choose, then ask them to send it to your Celebrant to check it fits the tone of the ceremony, or if you are a total bridezilla demand they email it over to you first (just kidding).
What about if you want to choose the readings yourselves? Sure, why not? And here you get the perfect opportunity to select a person to read who will smash the delivery, so use your choices wisely.
Which reading should you choose?
The answer to this is really simple. Choose a reading which resonates with you, touches your soul, sums up your relationship so perfectly that it could have been written for you, or that does all the aforementioned AND makes you laugh. Maybe you have something in mind already, otherwise good old google might find you something. Do a search for what you are looking for in the reading, however ‘reflections on love and marriage’ for example, rather than ‘wedding readings’, because trust me, there is going to be a lot in there and some of it really sucks. Have a read of my blog post ‘How to choose a reading for your wedding ceremony’ for some more frank and opinionated advice.
Have fun and choose well!
Photos: Elias Kordelakos Amazing couple: Thom and Becki Thank you for sharing the beautiful photos from your wedding!