6 great ways to include your guests in your wedding ceremony

May 21, 2023 | Weddings

Include your guestsA celebrant wedding ceremony provides you with many opportunities to include your guests. And why not? After all they are all there to support you and join in with the excitement of your special day. In this blog we explore 6 ways you can include your guests in the wedding ceremony itself:

1. Ask them to do readings

The majority of my couples like to include readings in their wedding ceremony. It gives everyone someone different to listen to, adding variety. It’s a real privilege to be asked to do a reading but do pick your readers wisely. If someone is absolutely petrified of speaking in public it’s best not to ask them! Choose readers who are comfortable and confident speaking to an audience and who can project their voices to the back of the room.

Sit your readers on the ends of rows near to the front so that they don’t disturb other guests when they get up and leave their seats.

2. Include them in the wedding party

To include your guests in the wedding party is a great honour and responsibility and there are several roles they could play:

Include your guestsBridesmaids: your bridesmaids/ maid of honour are very important and are there to support the bride every step of the way. They perform practical duties such as helping the bride to get ready, arranging her dress at the top of the aisle, and also provide emotional support on what can be a stressful and high pressure day.

Best man / woman: Arguably the most important way to include your guests is to choose one to be your best man/woman. Their role is also to provide both practical and emotional support in the lead up to the wedding and on the day itself. The best man’s speech is always eagerly awaited and is often a real highlight during the reception.

Ushers / groomsmen: There is a lot to be organised and co-ordinated on the wedding day and ushers / groomsmen can help with this. Anything involving fetching and carrying, directing guests to seats and simply making sure that everything is flowing smoothly can be the job of an usher.

3. Walking down the aisle

Parents of the bride/groom: could walk the bride/groom down the aisle, a highly significant role in the proceedings. They could also perform the modern day equivalent of ‘giving away’ the bride/groom to their partner. The celebrant asks a question such as ‘Do you (name) give your blessing, love and support to (name) in their marriage today to (name)? The parent responds ‘I do’ and takes their seat with the other guests.

Include your guestsOf course this role can be performed by anyone the bride / groom chooses. At a same sex wedding I officiated recently the two grooms were each walked down the aisle by both the parents, one in each arm. At another ceremony the bride walked down the aisle with her father one side of her and her daughter the other. If you are having two people accompany you down the aisle do let the venue know so that they can ensure the aisle is wide enough for three people!

4. Musical performers

You may have talented musicians in your family or friends network. If this is the case why not ask them to perform during your ceremony? There are several opportunities for music during your wedding ceremony: entrance music, signing the certificate, exit music and a song in the middle. A great way to include your guests in the musical interlude is to have a mass singalong lead by one of your friends or family. Choose a song that everyone knows and enjoys!

5. Signing the certificate

A commemorative wedding certificate can be witnessed by two or more of your guests, giving you the opportunity to involve guests who have not otherwise played a part in your ceremony.

6. Guest promise

Lots of my couple feel that their wedding day is about their guests, not just about them as a couple. They like to include a guest promise alongside the commitments that they are making to one another. This is a fun and lighthearted inclusion that gets everyone to participate by saying ‘We do’ in answer to a questions asked by the celebrant.

If you’d like to wow your guests and make your wedding ceremony one they’ll talk about for years to come just get in touch, I’d love to hear from you.


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I’d love to hear from you… For a chat about how we can work together to start planning your own personalised ceremony.