Catholic Wedding in Italy
Catholic wedding ceremonies are typically more detailed if both the bride and groom are Catholic. If one is not then you usually do not have a typical hour long ceremony that has Communion. Catholic weddings are always in a church. People always try to get around that one for some reason. Catholics must marry in accord with canonical form. This means that they are required to have a Catholic wedding ceremony, conducted by either the pastor or another priest deputed by him. That is as much detail as I will go into on that. It’s a broad topic and one that I don’t tend to debate. Personally I think a church wedding can take a lot of stress off of clients when they are getting married in Colorado. You never have to worry about the weather! You have built in audio a lot of times. Depending on the church you don’t need over the top decor. I love an outdoor ceremony! But, I just believe that church weddings can be nice for the client that does have a long history of being involved in their church or religion.
There are a lot of traditions to the ceremony. But, I think it’s nice when couples can bring in their own twist and style.
1. Buy the flowergirls their dresses then take them back to keep for a future daughter or grandaughters First Communion dress. We live in a time when dresses can be redesigned and made new again!
2. Or flip number 1. Have the flowergirl where your First Communion dress!
3. Use your baptismal candle as the unity candle. Now this is tricky b/c we don’t actually light unity candles in our ceremonies. Some priests allow it. Some don’t. But, you could still have it burning at your ceremony.
4. Wrap your bouquet in your rosary.
5. Add religious medal to your bouquet or to the boutonniere of the groom.
6. Turn your wedding dress into a baptismal gown down the road.
7. Use a kneeler during the ceremony. Or one part to discuss with your priest when discussing ceremony…..where will you sit during the homily. Will the chairs face out or will your backs be to the church? If your backs are to the church remember to include that in your wedding decor! I think two small wreathes of olive leaves with a satin bow could be gorgeous. Or just two small white wreathes. This is not the time to ghetto it up with your ‘monogram’ or whatever symbol has been used on your wedding printed items. Keep it tasteful!
8. When Ava Maria is sung…….(I am not a fan of that song for some reason if it’s in English. I love when it’s sung in Latin. So think about that.) Place a bouquet of flowers by the statue of Mary. Catholics love them some statues. The only other religion to be more reverent to saint/statues are the Greeks. You can also have a flower girl carry the small bouquet down for you and place it later. Or for added drama have the bouquet at your seats prior to the ceremony or on a small table next to you.
9. Have the flower petals from your ceremony turned into a rosary. If you are lucky enough to have rose petals. Most churches do not allow it. But, here’s hoping!
10. Have your family bible used during the ceremony.
11. For the guests be kind and do a program that they can follow during your Mass if you are having a detailed and long ceremony. I always hear guests wondering if they should go for Communion or not. It’s very confusing. So even go as far as mentioning that in the program.
12. Washing of feet.
It’s pretty darn powerful to be that humble on your wedding day. I’m sure there are people that would laugh at this. I had one client do this a few years ago and there was not a dry eye in the entire reception. Even the frat boys that were groomsmen sobered up and were in awe. The groom turned and did this same thing for his wife. Marriage is not something to be taken lightly and I think in the end this was even more powerful than the vows. It was a very raw moment but such an act of love. It brought that “in sickness and health” to a new level of thought process.
John 13: 1-17 Washing of feet
Amazing photo by Ryan Ray Photo
13. Pray together. Have photos. If you are not seeing one another prior to the ceremony, then perhaps praying with your backs to one another on kneelers in a chapel would be an idea.
14. Pick songs or readings from your parents weddings.
15. Have rosaries blessed during the ceremony as gifts to parents, grandparents, and children to come.
When you are Catholic you have 7 sacraments. We typically know the ones we’ll all receive
Anointing of the Sick
I have received all but two. Holy Orders and Anointing of Sick. So I hope when I exit this world I am 6 for 7! The beauty of the 7 sacraments is that you can some what plan for the future of your own family. When my children were baptized they both held a sterling silver teething ring, I wore a ring I wore on my wedding day, they had my handkerchief from the wedding day as well to hold on to. We embroider Christening gowns with their date and place of baptism. Priss wore a bracelet that will one day go around her bouquet and of course we had rosaries that they will continue to use during their sacraments to come. Y’all know I am already making plans for First Communion and we are over two years away!
My point being to keep in mind that there is life after the wedding day. Not just the marriage (everyone knows that.) It’s the life that you may continue to have in church with your family.
Catholic weddings are all about the tradition. It doesn’t have to be stuffy. It can’t be you walking down the aisle to a Pearl Jam song played on a violin either. Embrace that you are going to have a ceremony that will end up timeless (aside from the bridesmaid dresses.)
Good luck and happy planning!