Help with wedding readings, please!

My SIL is getting married in two weeks and asked me to read something during the ceremony, except that she doesn’t know what she wants me to read!!!

Any good ideas? Links to pieces you have liked/used would be great (no scripture)!

Thanks so much!

Does she have a favourite love song? You can read verses from that. There are non-scripture readings available online (the Blessing of the Apaches comes to mind), but any love poem, song or even just text of your own creation will do. It does, in a large way, come down to your SIL… what kind of ceremony is she having, and what tone is she looking for?

At our wedding, we had someone read a poem that my great-grandfather had written (in French), a text that my aunt had written (also in French) and the aforementioned Blessing (in English). We had a bilingual ceremony, so it was important to us to have readings in both languages.

Good luck!

Shakespeare online
I read Sonnet 116 at my nephews wedding.

“Falling in Love is like Owning a Dog” by Taylor Mali

Slightly humorous, mostly touching.

We had a friend read a passage from The Prophet by Khalil Gibran. It could fit in other weddings, but it fit especially well because we had our ceremony on the beach.

This site here has all of the text under different links. The portion we chose is the “Marriage” one, but some of the others are nice as well.

This is the reading we had one of our friends do at our wedding just recently.

Treasure Your Love
Author unknown

*You share today the joy of a deep commitment and trust
You have given each other the most precious gift of love
Treasure it, nurture it and encourage it
You are sharing something rare and beautiful

Always speak the truth and listen attentively
So that you may understand each other’s thoughts and intentions
Inspire each other by sharing you accomplishments
Say “I love you” often to retain the warmth between you

Laugh a lot, even when you’re angry
Remember you’re each other’s best friend
Stand together and for each other always
Share your hopes and dreams, joys and friendship
May each day be a blessing*

I don’t recall where MrsSmurf found it, but as noted, it was attributed as author unknown.

There is the Velveteen Rabbit “Love makes you real” speech.

The passages about love from the Song of Solomon are good, if it’s an Xtian wedding. “Love is patient, love is kind” and all that.

Oh, please do NOT do the love is patient, love is kind, love removes all stains, love can be uysed as a floor wax AND a dessert topping, do not taunt love…

It sickens everyone at the weddings. Even those that claim to like it still turn off their mental switch when that old chestnut comes around.

Sonnet 116 is a nice touch. Stay away from song lyrics.

I think the passage you have in mind there is actually 1 Corinthians 13. Song of Solomon is a bit more sexual in its language.

Still, the OP asked for non-bible passages, so Shakespeare seems a safe bet.

1 Corinthians 13 , actually.

The Song of Solomon is a bit more, uh, graphic:

Ditto on this. There are a gazillion romantic songs that would translate nicely to a reading.

There’s a large collection of readings for weddings starting here.

We’re using (parts of) “I like you” by Sandol Stoddard Warburg.

To be fair, though, I think the original text says ‘fist’

It’s You I Like,” by Mr. Rogers

As a minister in the Universal Life Church, I have performed 4 weddings. Each has been for very close friends and each has been unique. One thing I’ve found, is that although the readings can be nice, the tears flow more when I set my notes aside for a minute and just talk a little.

What’s the style of your wedding? Ours was a bit unconvential and we had a reading that was fitting to the occassion:

I Wanna Be Yours

John Cooper Clarke

let me be your vacuum cleaner
breathing in your dust
let me be your ford cortina
i will never rust
if you like your coffee hot
let me be your coffee pot
you call the shots
i wanna be yours

let me be your raincoat
for those frequent rainy days
let me be your dreamboat
when you wanna sail away
let me be your teddy bear
take me with you anywhere
i don’t care
i wanna be yours

let me be your electric meter
i will not run out
let me be the electric heater
you get cold without
let me be your setting lotion
hold your hair with deep devotion
deep as the deep atlantic ocean
that’s how deep is my emotion

i wanna be yours

I’ll bet you’re just kidding, but that’s so sweet. I love Mr. Rogers.

Another vote against that “love is patient” nonsense. When my sister got married I told her before she even asked that I wasn’t reading that old cliche. She got all crestfallen and I ended up reading nothing. I’m sure she didn’t REALLY believe I was going to recite “Milk, milk, lemonade, rrrrrrrrrrrrround the corner fudge is made.”

Or did she?

We used this one:

*Native American reading:

Now you will feel no rain, for each of you will be shelter for the other.
Now you will feel no cold, for each of you will be warmth to the other.
Now you are two persons, but there is only one life before you.
Go now to your dwelling to enter the days of your life together.
And may your days be good and long upon the earth.*

And this one from The Little Prince:

*Go and look again at the roses. You will understand now that yours is unique in all the world. Then come back to say goodbye to me, and I will make you a present of a secret."

The little prince went away, to look again at the roses.

“You are not at all like my rose,” he said. “As yet you are nothing. No one has tamed you, and you have tamed no one. You are like my fox when I first knew him. He was only a fox like a hundred thousand other foxes. But I have made him my friend, and now he is unique in all the world.”

And the roses were very much embarrassed.

“You are beautiful, but you are empty,” he went on. "One could not die for you. To be sure, an ordinary passerby would think that my rose looked just like you-- the rose that belongs to me. But in herself alone she is more important than all the hundreds of you other roses: because it is she that I have watered; because it is she that I have put under the glass globe; because it is she that I have sheltered behind the screen; because it is for her that I have killed the caterpillars (except the two or three that we saved to become butterflies); because it is she that I have listened to, when she grumbled, or boasted, or even sometimes when she said nothing. Because she is my rose.

And he went back to meet the fox.

“Goodbye,” he said.

“Goodbye,” said the fox. “And now here is my secret, a very simple secret: It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.”

“What is essential is invisible to the eye,” the little prince repeated, so that he would be sure to remember.

“It is the time you have wasted for your rose that makes your rose so important.”

“It is the time I have wasted for my rose–” said the little prince, so that he would be sure to remember.

“Men have forgotten this truth,” said the fox. “But you must not forget it. You become responsible, forever, for what you have tamed. You are responsible for your rose…”

“I am responsible for my rose,” the little prince repeated, so that he would be sure to remember.

The Little Prince Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
Chapter 21, The Little Prince Befriends the Fox*

Last reading:

*“Blessing for a Marriage”, James Dillet Freeman

May your marriage bring you all the exquisite excitements a marriage should bring, and may life grant you also patience, tolerance, and understanding.
May you always need one another - not so much to fill your emptiness as to help you to know your fullness. A mountain needs a valley to be complete; the valley does not make the mountain less, but more; and the valley is more a valley because it has a mountain towering over it. So let it be with you and you.
May you need one another, but not out of weakness.
May you want one another, but not out of lack.
May you entice one another, but not compel one another.
May you embrace one another, but not out encircle one another.
May you succeed in all important ways with one another, and not fail in the little graces.
May you look for things to praise, often say, “I love you!” and take no notice of small faults.
If you have quarrels that push you apart, may both of you hope to have good sense enough to take the first step back.
May you enter into the mystery which is the awareness of one another’s presence - no more physical than spiritual, warm and near when you are side by side, and warm and near when you are in separate rooms or even distant cities.
May you have happiness, and may you find it making one another happy.
May you have love, and may you find it loving one another. *

My brother and I toiled and toiled over what might be an appropriate “brother-sister” wedding dance (when the brother is the groom and the sister is not the bride, ya sickos!) and that’s what we came up with. It was very sweet of us, we thought.