There are four Catholic wedding readings that typically comprise a Catholic wedding ceremony. The first reading (from the Old Testament), a Responsorial Psalm, the second reading (from the New Testament), and a fourth reading from the Gospel. Here is the typical order of the Catholic wedding readings within the ceremony, starting after the seating of the families, the wedding processional, and the entrance of the bride:
First, an Opening Prayer is usually given by the priest.
The First Reading typically comes from the Catholic book The Rite of Marriage. Here are a few options:
- Genesis 1:26-28, 31: “God created man and woman.”
- Genesis 2:18-24: “The two of them became one body.”
- Proverbs 31: 10-13: “A woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.”
- Tobit 8:5-7: “Allow us to live together to a happy old age.”
- Genesis 24: “In his love for Rebekah, Isaac found solace after the death of his mother."
- Tobit 7: “May the Lord of heaven prosper you both. May he grant you mercy and peace.”
- Sirach 26: “Like the sun rising in the Lord’s heavens, the beauty of a virtuous wife is the radiance of her home.”
- Jeremiah 31: “I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah.”
In Catholic Wedding Traditions, the Responsorial Psalm is typically recited by a cantor, or song leader. The cantor sings the verses, then leads the assembly in the response (which is typically the title of the psalm). Here are a few suggestions:
- Psalm 33:12, 18, 20-21, 22: “The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord.”
- Psalm 34:2-3, 4-5, 6-7, 8-9: “I will bless the Lord at all times.”
- Psalm 103: “The Lord is kind and merciful.”
- Psalm 128: “Happy are those who fear the Lord.”
- Psalm 145: “The Lord is compassionate to all his creatures.”
- Psalm 148: “Let us praise the name of the Lord.”
The Second Reading is then given from the New Testament. Here are a few suggestions:
- Romans 8: “What will separate us from the love of Christ?"
- 1 Corinthians: “Your body is the temple of the “Holy Spirit;” If I do not have love, I am nothing.”
- Philippians 4:4-9: “The God of peace will be with you.”
- Colossians 3:12-17: “And over all these put on love, that is, the bond of perfection.”
- 1 John 4:7-12: “Love in deed and in truth.”
- Revelation 19:5-9: “Blessed are those who have been called to the wedding feast of the Lamb.”
The Gospel Reading is usually given by the priest. Here are some suggestions:
- Matthew 5:1-12: “Rejoice and be glad, for your reward will be great in heaven.”
- Matthew 19:3-6: “What God has united, man must not separate.”
- Mark 10: 6-9: “They are no long two, but one flesh.”
- John 15: 12-16: “This is my commandment: love one another.”
Next comes the Homily, which is typically a short sermon or word given from the prist. The homily is followed by the exchange of Catholic Wedding Vows, followed by the Blessing and Exchange of Rings. After the rings are exchanged, there is a Lighting of the Unity Candle, usually accompanied by a song.
Finally, there is the Concluding Rite. Usually the Lord's Prayer, the Assembly joins together to recite this prayer, led by the priest. A final blessing is given, and the ressional begins.