We all love this post – its brilliantly helpful when you’re looking for some inspiration on readings for your wedding that aren’t Corinthians! So here you go. First posted in 2013, our previous bride-to-be Charlie, now married and with a baby on the way, talked about picking readings for a non-religious ceremony. Over once again, to you Charlie…..x
Throw Back Thursday: A Selection of Non-Religious Readings
Hello lovely readers!
This week I am sharing with you some non-religious readings, a simple way of making a civil ceremony a lot more personal. Before I start, I almost feel like I should put a disclaimer on this post for those of you who have already selected your readings because of what happened to me!
Mark and I had chosen three readings, confirmed them with the registrar, found readers to read them and printed off our orders of ceremony and then about three nights before the wedding I came across this reading from Stardust (which was the first film Mark and I saw together- him under duress!) and I nearly cried because I loved it so much and couldn’t have it, so proceed with caution!
The Stardust reading
Yvaine: You know when I said I knew little about love? That wasn’t true. I know a lot about love. I’ve seen it; I’ve seen centuries and centuries of it. It’s the only thing that made watching your world bearable.
All the wars, pain, lies, and hate, made me want to turn away and never look down again. But to see the way that mankind loves! I mean you could search the furthest reaches of the universe and never find anything more beautiful.
So, yes I know that love is unconditional, but I also know it can be unpredictable, unexpected, uncontrollable, unbearable, and strangely easy to mistake for loathing. And, well, what I’m trying to say, Tristan, is.. I think I love you.
My heart it feels like my chest can barely contain it, like it doesn’t belong to me anymore; it belongs to you, and if you wanted it, I’d wish for nothing in exchange: no gifts, no goods, no demonstrations of devotion, nothing, but knowing you love me, too. Just your heart in exchange for mine.
As I mentioned above, we had three readings and I think they worked really well – we had a lot of comments about how personal our ceremony was and that was what I was hoping for. Deciding who will do the readings for you can be difficult! It is a daunting thing for some people to get up and speak in front of a room full of people and I know some people have found it hard to find willing volunteers!
Mark knew he wanted to ask his best man and as he’s a confident guy that was no problem, that left us with two. Initially I tested the water with my bridesmaids but as suspected they were all quite hesitant and I didn’t want anyone to do anything they weren’t totally comfortable with. I then thought about two other people close to me, my two cousins Jade and Amy. What with Amy being a teacher I was pretty sure that she would be fine, but Jade hates being the centre of attention so I was cautious about asking her but to my delight they both said yes and did an amazing job!
These were the readings we had:
- He’s not perfect (by Bob Marley) Read by Mark’s best man Wayne.
- I love you means… Read by Jade
- Apache marriage blessing Read by Amy. There are several versions of this, poor Amy got stuck with the long one!
But if those don’t float your boat (don’t worry I won’t be offended!) I have plenty more inspiration for you. This one comes from the lovely Budget-bride Sarah’s wedding: I love you much (most beautiful darling) by ee cummings and it is a beauty.
Dr Seuss fan’s this one is for you! Oh the places you’ll go makes a beautiful but light hearted reading, it is quite long though so you may want to have it abridged!
Do we have any couples with a Scottish connection? This is a great two person reading, with one person reading the application and one the appointment, preferably a married couple in my humble opinion:
Bidie-in by Diana Hendry and Hamish Whyte
O Let me be your bidie-in
And keep you close within
As dearest kith and kin
I promise I’d be tidy in
Whatever bed or bunk you’re in
I’d never ever drink your gin
I’d be your multi-vitamin
I’d wear my sexy tiger-skin
And play my love-sick mandolin
It cannot be a mortal sin
To be in such a dizzy spin
I’d like to get inside your skin
I’d even be your concubine
I hope you know I’m genuine
O let me be your bidie-in
Of course, you may be my bidie-in
You didn’t need to apply within
A braw new world’s about to begin
We’ll gang thegether through thick and thin
We’ll walk unscathed through burr & whin
If you’re to be my porcupin
I’ll just have to bear it and grin
I’ll be your sheik,your djinn
I’ll be yang to your yin
You’ll be my kitten,my mitten,my terrapin.
All night long we’ll make love’s sweet din
And never mind the wheelie-bin
In our romantic cinema there’ll be no FIN
And so I say again – you’re in- You’ve got the job of bidie in!
I absolutely love this one by Coulson Macleod, his typography prints are so beautiful! I also love this poem by Joyce Ebrecht, it makes me think of being an old married couple :) With that in mind I also found this one which brings tears to my eyes: The beauty of love.
If you are a book lover why not take an extract from your favourite book as a child? Even better if both of you have a favourite book and you can take a reading from each, I have seen it done with books such as Winnie the Pooh and The Velveteen Rabbit and I think it works so well.
I hope that by now you have found some inspiration but just in case you haven’t (as we are indeed a WELSH wedding blog!) I will leave you with the lovely Mi gerddi gyda thi complete with translation!
“Mi gerddaf gyda thi dros lwybrau maith
A blodau can a breuddwyd ar ein taith
I’th lygaid syllaf a dal dy law
Mi gerddaf gyda thi beth bynnag ddaw”.
“I will walk with you across distant paths
Flowers and dreams will bless our journey
Into your eyes I will gaze and holding your hand
I will walk with you whatever may come”.
Have you found readings that you love? Have you decided not to have readings? If you have any readings that I haven’t included (I know there are bound to be loads!) please share them in the comments box, I would love to read them and I’m sure our readers will too :)