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Inspiration & Expert Advice to Help You Create Your Own Wedding Ceremony!

Marriage Candle Ceremonies

I visited some of the old churches in England on my travels which are rich in history and ceremony. Many of these ancient buildings are open to the public during the day and offer a quiet sanctuary in the middle of a city or village. In all of the churches I have been to they have an array of candles, with one always permanently lit (albeit, sometimes an artificial light symbolic of a burning candle). In some churches visitors are welcome to light a candle and ask for support or offer a prayer. The sight of a group of small flickering flames representing prayers and blessings always touches me.

I recall one small wedding I conducted with about twenty guests where the large array of candles burning at the end of the ceremony looked magnificent. At an appointed time during the ceremony guests were invited to come forward, light a small tapered candle and offer a blessing to the bride and groom. The lit candle was then placed in one of the two shallow dishes either side of the couple. (The dishes were filled with sand to make placement of the candles easy.)

Many cultures use candles in their ceremonies and rituals and carry rich symbolic meaning.

In ancient Greek marriage processions the mother of the bride would carry a lit torch from the family hearth. Now, in a candle ceremony, it is quite common for the mother of the bride and groom to come forward and light the individual candles representing their family and the life of the bride and groom before the union. Toward the end of the ceremony the couple would then proceed to light the marriage candle using these two individual family candles to symbolize their unity. 

I'll share some more beautiful ideas from other families in the next few blog posts.

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