Looking for ways to make your wedding service uniquely yours? Why not consider including a special ceremony during your wedding such as one of these more unique options?
While most traditional Protestant wedding ceremonies follow a basic order, there are many special touches you can add to your wedding to personalize it. We’ve all been to weddings where the couple has participated in a unity ceremony using candles. It’s beautiful, but not very unique these days. There are a few other ways you can connote the same idea.
Some couples have used flowers during the unity ceremony. Each mother carries a few stems of flowers in a certain color up the aisle and places her respective flowers in a vase. When it’s time for the unity ceremony, the bride and groom each take their families’ colored flowers and place them together in a larger vase in the center.
Many couples have used sand with the same idea. Each family has their own color of sand. During the unity ceremony, the bride and groom pour the sand in together, blending them just as their families are now becoming blended together. This is a particularly lovely ceremony to include when the bride and groom have children; it is a wonderful way to include them to symbolize the two families becoming one.
This sweet ritual can be part of your actual ceremony or take place at the end, which is what we recommend. At the end of the wedding ceremony, guests are invited to take a small stone from baskets (or vessel of your choosing), asked to make a wish for the newlyweds and cast the stone into a body of water (pond, lake, ocean, vase, etc.), leaving a memory for the couple. Throughout the reception, the couple can enjoy asking their friends and family what wish or advice had been cast into the pond for them. Sometimes, couples will have cards available for the guests to actually write down their blessing and place them into a blessing box for the bride and groom to keep forever.
This is a wonderful tradition, but it works best when you have a small wedding or limit the “warmers” to just your immediate family (first row or two of family in the congregation) and your wedding party. When you do this, you can have your parents and grandparents at the altar area with you and your attendants for this ritual. The rings are placed in small organza bags (or whatever you’d like them in) and brought to the altar by an usher. The bag with the groom’s ring is given to the bridesmaids and the bride’s is to the groomsmen. When the music begins, the bags are passed to each person at the altar, ending with the bride and groom, who then present the rings to each other during the appropriate time. As each person has the ring bag, they should say a little prayer or blessing for the couple.
Be sure to check with your officiant about such amendments to your order of service. While these special touches won’t interfere with the traditional aspects to your wedding ceremony, you want to make sure your pastor will be on board and supportive of your choices.