The Order of Service for your Wedding
No matter what type of ceremony you choose, there is a standard order of service that most couples follow.
The celebrant usually introduces the bride and groom to the guests and explains that they are here to witness the wedding of the couple.
Readings then follow. The celebrant then says a few words, before the exchanging of the vows and rings.The couple then have their witnesses sign the marriage register.
Many couples have an order of service printed so that the guests can follow the ceremony. Ask the celebrant if they have samples that you can have a look at and use these to help you design your own booklet.
Generally the names of everyone who is taking part in the service is included, such as the minister, names of family and friends who are taking part in the ceremony.
Have these professionally printed, or make them up yourself (on your home computer, it will save you some money). Print one copy per person, plus some spare copies that you may like to send to anyone, who can't make it to your wedding.
The actual order will vary from church to church, so ask to see samples from previous weddings to use as a guide. You can make minor changes and choose particular hymns, psalms and readings (if you need help ask your officiant). The normal order of entry is:
- The groom and groomsmen are waiting at the altar.
- Flower girls or pageboys go down the aisle before the bride.
- The bride and her father, walk down the aisle followed by the attendants.
- The minister will read an introductory pray.
- He then asks the couple if they are willing to make certain promises.
- The vows and rings are exchanged.
- The officiant reads a prayer to bless the marriage.
- The couple and their witnesses sign the marriage certificate.
- The bride and groom leave the church, followed by the attendants, parents and finally the guests.