Your wedding ceremony can be one of the trickiest parts of the planning process – paperwork, readings, poems – there can be a lot to get your head around. Catholic weddings in particular can come with a few more hurdles – we’ve already covered all the documents you need and how to go about your Catholic wedding ceremony in our Guide to Planning Your Wedding Ceremony (and if you’ve any questions, be sure to check out 16 of Your Most Popular Wedding Ceremony Questions – Answered) and we’ve also rounded up some beautiful and popular Prayers of the Faithful ideas so you can include loved ones easily in your Big Day (it can save you a couple of hours on Google as well!). Today we’re tackling the communion reflection, a few words that a friend or family member can read as people have a few quiet moments after communion (might be best to check with your priest or parish if the readings and reflections are suitable in advance as some churches will have rules and regulations). The weddingsonline forums are full of couples exchanging ideas so today we’ve rounded up some of the most popular and romantic ones we’ve come across and are sharing them with you – of course, they don’t have to be used just for communion reflections, if you’re having a civil, humanist, spiritual or alternative/independent ceremony, these readings could come in handy as well!
30 of the Best Ceremony Booklet Ideas
Scaffolding by Seamas Heaney
Masons, when they start upon a building,
are careful to test the scaffolding:
make sure that planks won’t slip at busy points,
secure all ladders, tighten bolted joints.
And yet all this comes down, when the job’s done,
showing off walls of sure and solid stone.
So if, my dear, there sometimes seem to be
old bridges breaking between you and me,
never fear. We may have let the scaffolds fall,
confident that we have built our wall.
These are the hands of your best friend, young and strong and full of love for you, that are holding yours on your wedding day, as you promise to love each other today, tomorrow, and forever.
These are the hands that will work alongside yours, as together you build your future.
These are the hands that will passionately love you and cherish you through the years, and with the slightest touch, will comfort you like no other.
These are the hands that will hold you when fear or grief fills your mind.
These are the hands that will countless times wipe the tears from your eyes; tears of sorrow, and tears of joy.
These are the hands that will tenderly hold your children. These are the hands that will help you to hold your family as one.
These are the hands that will give you strength when you need it.
And lastly, these are the hands that even when wrinkled and aged, will still be reaching for yours, still giving you the same unspoken tenderness with just a touch.
What is a Soulmate by Emily Matthews
If you have found a smile that is the sweetest one you’ve known.
If you have heard, within a voice, the echoes of your own.
If you have felt a touch that stirs the longing of your heart,
And still can feel that closeness in the moment you’re apart.
If you are filled with wonder at the way two lives can blend,
To weave a perfect pattern that is seamless end to end.
If you believe some things in life are simply meant to be,
Then you have found your soulmate, your hearts own destiny.
If you can always be as close and happy as today,
Yet be secure enough to grow and change along the way.
If you can keep for you alone your love as man and wife,
Yet find the time to share your joy with others in your life.
If you can be as one and walk through marriage hand in hand,
Yet still support the goals and dreams that each of you have planned.
If you can dare to always go your separate ways together,
Then all the wonders of today will stay with you forever.
I’ll Walk Beside You
I’ll walk beside you through the world today
While dreams and songs and flowers bless your way
I’ll look into your eyes and hold your hand
I’ll walk beside you through the golden land
I’ll walk beside you through the world tonight
Beneath the starry skies ablaze with light
Within your soul love’s tender words I’ll hide
I’ll walk beside you through the eventide
I’ll walk beside you through the passing years
Through days of cloud and sunshine, joys and tears
And when the great call comes, the sunset gleams
I’ll walk beside you to the land of dreams
Traditional Irish Blessing
May the road rise to meet you,
May the wind be always at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
The rains fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of his hand.
May God be with you and bless you;
May you see your children’s children.
May you be poor in misfortune,
Rich in blessings,
May you know nothing but happiness
From this day forward.
May the road rise to meet you
May the wind be always at your back
May the warm rays of sun fall upon your home
And may the hand of a friend always be near.
May green be the grass you walk on,
May blue be the skies above you,
May pure be the joys that surround you,
May true be the hearts that love you.
Excerpt from The Bridge Across Forever by Richard Bach
A soulmate is someone who has locks that fit our keys, and keys to fit our locks. When we feel safe enough to open the locks, our truest selves step out and we can be completely and honestly who we are; we can be loved for who we are and not for who we’re pretending to be. Each unveils the best part of the other. No matter what else goes wrong around us, with that one person we’re safe in our own paradise. Our soulmate is someone who shares our deepest longings, our sense of direction. When we’re two balloons, and together our direction is up, chances are we’ve found the right person. Our soulmate is the one who makes life come to life.
Maybe… We are supposed to meet the wrong people before meeting the right one, so that when we finally meet the right person, we will know how to be grateful for that gift.
Maybe… it is true that we don’t know what we have got until we lose it, but it is also true that we don’t know what we have been missing until it arrives.
Maybe… the happiest of people don’t necessarily have the best of
everything; they just make the most of everything that comes along their way.
Maybe… the best kind of love is the kind where you can sit on a sofa
Together never say a word, and then walk away feeling like it was the best conversation you’ve ever had.
Maybe… you shouldn’t go for looks; they can deceive. Don’t go for wealth; even that fades away. Go for someone who makes you smile, because it takes only a smile to make a dark day seem bright.
Maybe… you should hope for enough happiness to make you sweet, enough trials to make you strong, enough sorrow to keep you human, and enough hope to make you happy.
Maybe Love is not about finding the perfect person; it’s about learning to see an imperfect person perfectly. When you do what you can, love will do what you can’t.
Love by Roy Croft
I love you,
Not only for what you are,
But for what I am when I am with you.
I love you,
Not only for what you have made of yourself,
But for what you are making of me.
I love you
For the part of me that you bring out;
I love you
For putting your hand into my heaped-up heart
And passing over all the foolish, weak things
that you can’t help dimly seeing there.
And for drawing out into the light
all the beautiful belongings that no one else
had looked quite far enough to find.
I love you
Because you are helping me to make
Of the lumber of my life
Not a tavern but a temple;
Out of the works of my every day
Not a reproach but a song.
I love you
Because you have done more than any creed
Could have done to make me good,
And more than any fate to make me happy.
You have done it
Without a touch,
Without a word,
Without a sign.
You have done it
By being yourself.
These I Can Promise by Mark Twain
I cannot promise you a life of sunshine;
I cannot promise riches, wealth, or gold;
I cannot promise you an easy pathway
That leads away from change or growing old.
But I can promise all my heart’s devotion;
A smile to chase away your tears of sorrow;
A love that’s ever true and ever growing;
A hand to hold in yours through each tomorrow.
And now as Gaeilge…
Geallaim Iad Seo
Ní féidir liom saol lán le gréine a ghealladh duit,
Ní gheallfaidh mé saibhreas, maoin ná ór,
Ní féidir liom bealach éasca a ghealladh duit,
A cheallaigh athrú nó éirí sean.
Ach geallaim dúthracht mo chroí duit,
Miongáire a shaorfaidh tú ó do dheora,
Geallaim grá síoraí i gcónaí duit,
Mo lámh i do lámh go deo.
Your Name by Jessica Blade
I wrote your name in the sky,
but the wind blew it away.
I wrote your name in the sand,
but the waves washed it away.
I wrote your name in my heart,
and forever it will stay.
The Art of Marriage by Wilfred A. Peterson
A good marriage must be created.
In a marriage the little things are the big things.
It is never being too old to hold hands.
It is remembering to say ‘I love you’ at least once a day.
It is never going to sleep angry.
It is at no time taking the other for granted.
The courtship should not end with the honeymoon.
It should continue through all the years.
It is having a mutual sense of values and common objectives.
It is a standing together facing the world.
It is forming a circle of love that gathers in the whole family.
It is doing things for each other, not in the attitude of duty or sacrifice, but in the spirit of joy.
It is speaking words of appreciation and demonstrating gratitude in thoughtful ways.
It is not expecting the husband to wear a halo or the wife the wings of an angel.
It is not looking for perfection in each other. It is cultivating flexibility, patience, understanding and a sense of humour.
It is having the capacity to forgive and forget.
It is giving each other an atmosphere in which each can grow.
It is finding room for the things of the spirit.
It is a common search for the good and the beautiful.
It is establishing a relationship in which the independence is equal, dependence is mutual and the obligation is reciprocal.
It is not only marrying the right partner.
It is being the right partner.
Heaven Sent Poem by Lexi Davis
Love ruled the day, when the angels came to meet,
sweeping them up and off of their feet.
Neither of them knowing what the future
would bring, two hearts together and one diamond ring.
Today it’s a promise, so sweet and so pure.
Together forever, for love to endure.
A blessing from above, this story is told,
a love to last a lifetime and a hand to hold.
It was no accident, that this came to be, now you must
realise that it really takes three.
So go hand in hand to a future unknown,
knowing that with the Lord, you will never be alone.
With the angles still near and dear to heart,
this couple shall prosper and never grow apart.
For it’s not always the eye that is the first to see,
what really matters in life and what is meant to be.
So remember that to love is time well spent, what
brought you two together was heaven sent.
True Love (Author Unknown)
True love is a sacred flame
That burns eternally,
And none can dim its special glow
Or change its destiny.
True love speaks in tender tones
And hears with a gentle ear,
True love gives with open heart
And true love conquers fear.
True love makes no harsh demands
It neither rules nor binds,
And true love holds with gentle hands
The heart that it entwines.
I Carry Your Heart with Me by E. E Cummings
I carry your heart with me (I carry it in
my heart) I am never without it (anywhere
I go you go, my dear; and whatever is done
by only me is your doing, my darling)
no fate (for you are my fate, my sweet) I want
no world (for beautiful you are my world, my true)
and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant
and whatever a sun will always sing is you
Here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life; which grows
higher than the soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart
I carry your heart (I carry it in my heart)
Eskimo Love Song (Author Unknown)
You are my husband, you are my wife
My feet shall run because of you
My feet dance because of you
My heart shall beat because of you
My eyes see because of you
My mind thinks because of you
And I shall love, because of you.
I Promise by Dorothy Colgan
I promise to give you the best of myself
and to ask of you no more than you can give.
I promise to respect you as your own person
and to realise that your interests, desires and needs
are no less important than my own.
I promise to share with you my time and my attention
and to bring joy, strength and imagination to our relationship.
I promise to keep myself open to you,
to let you see through the window of my world into my innermost fears
and feelings, secrets and dreams.
I promise to grow along with you,
to be willing to face changes in order to keep our relationship alive and exciting.
I promise to love you in good times and in bad,
with all I have to give and all I feel inside in the only way I know how. Completely and forever.
Dove Poem (Author Unknown)
Two doves meeting in the sky
Two loves hand in hand eye to eye
Two parts of a loving whole
Two hearts and a single soul
Two stars shining big and bright
Two fires bringing warmth and light
Two songs played in perfect tune
Two flowers growing into bloom
Two doves gliding in the air
Two loves free without a care
Two parts of a loving whole
Two hearts and a single soul.
I Belong in Your Arms by Deborah Bridea
Finally I have found a place
Into which I fit perfectly, safely and securely.
This place is filled with happiness and laughter,
Yet it is spacious enough, to allow me the freedom to move around,
To live my life and be myself.
This wonderful place, I have found, finally,
Inside your arms, inside your heart, inside your love.
The Promise by Eileen Rafter
The sun danced on the snow with a sparkling smile,
As two lovers sat quietly, alone for a while.
Then he turned and said, with a casual air
(Though he blushed from his chin to the tips of his hair),
“I think I might like to get married to you”
“Well then, she said, “Well there’s a thought,
But what if we can’t promise to be all that we ought,
If I’m late yet again, when we plan to go out.
For I know I can’t promise, I’ll learn to ignore
Dirty socks and damp towels strewn all over the floor.
So if we can’t vow to be all that we should
I’m not sure what to do, though the idea’s quite good”.
But he gently smiled and tilted his head
Till his lips met her ear and softly he said
“I promise, to weave my dreams into your own,
That wherever you breathe will be my hearts home.
I promise, that whether with rags or with gold I am blessed
Your smile is the jewel I will treasure the best.
Do you think then, my love, we should marry – do you?”
“Yes” she said smiling “I do”.
The Apache Wedding Blessing
Now you feel no rain,
for each of you will be a shelter to the other.
Now you feel no cold,
for each of you will be warmth to the other.
Now there is no loneliness,
for each of you will be a companion to the other.
You are two bodies,
but there is one life before you and one home.
When evening falls,
each will look up and the other will be there.
He’ll take her hand; she will take his
and you’ll turn together
To look at the road you travelled to reach this:
the hour of your happiness.
It stretches behind you, even as the future lies ahead,
a long and winding road, whose every turning
Old hopes, new laughter, shared fears.
Your adventure has just begun.
Now you will feel no rain,
for each of you will be shelter for the other.
Now you will feel no cold,
for each of you will be warmth to the other.
Now there will be no loneliness,
for each of you will be companion to the other.
Now you are two persons,
but there is only one life before you.
May beauty surround you both in the
journey ahead and through all the years,
May happiness be your companion and
your days together be good and long upon the earth.
Photo by Clane Gessel Photography via Wedding Wire
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Pamela enjoys writing about all things decor (she loves buying it too) and has a not so secret addiction to stationery.