Weddings From The Heart, Rev. Tina Beneman 410-252-3333

Wedding Ceremony Outline:

This will give you an idea of the major elements that create a cohesive and powerful wedding ceremony. It's not necessary to include all these features. And I encourage you to create your own traditions! Any references to a Higher Power are up to you.

Things to consider before the ceremony begins:

  • Music
  • Wedding Programs
  • Seating of guests
  • Candle-lighting
  • Seating of significant family members

Processional: The order in which the wedding party enters the ceremony.

Presentation of the Bride/Groom: In traditional weddings, the Officiant may ask the parents to give their blessing on the marriage with words such as: "Who presents this bride for marriage?" Or in more modern language: "Who gives their blessing on this marriage and the joining of these families?"

Convocation /Welcome: A greeting to the guests with appreciation for their attendance. May include remembrance of loved ones who have died or are unable to attend. We may also mention special or unusual elements of the ceremony, such as ethnic traditions, to acquaint your guests with their significance.

Invocation: Often in the form of a prayer which states our intention for gathering together and asks for blessing (click here for an example).

Reading: You may wish to select one or more readings that have special meaning for you. Here's an opportunity to invite friends or family to participate by giving the reading. Of course, I am happy to read as well. Note: Some couples like to choose a passage from Scripture as a way of honoring the religious tradition in which they were raised even if they have chosen other spiritual paths.

The Address: A personal message I give to you that speaks to the unique qualities of your relationship.

Song/Musical Interlude/Reading: Here's another opportunity to feature a reading or song you love.

Exchange of Vows: Words of love and commitment that you choose and speak to each other.

Unity Candle/Sand Ceremony: Some couples choose a ritual that illustrates how their lives are being irrevocably joined by lighting a joint candle from two individual ones or pouring sand from individual containers into a joint container.

Blessing of the Hands: A blessing of the hands that will wear your wedding ring for a lifetime.

Blessing of the Wedding Rings: The circle is a sacred symbol of the everlasting love that unites all life.

Exchange of Rings with vows of commitment (click here for an example).

Pronouncement of Marriage: Hooray! I get to say you are married!


Blessing/Benediction: Click here for a favorite one from the Native American tradition.

Presentation of the Bride and Groom: "Family and friends, it is my privilege to present for the first time: [Put your names here!]"


Recessional: The bride and groom return down the aisle followed by the wedding party, parents and grandparents and finally the Officiant. Let the party begin!

Contact Rev. Beneman for a consultation!   

Create a ceremony as special and unique as your love.

© 2006-19 Maryland Wedding Officiant, Rev. Tina Beneman. All Rights Reserved.

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"We'll always remember how your gentle presence graced our wedding day."

- Joan and Colin