A number of the couples for whom I create and deliver wedding ceremonies already have children, either together or from previous relationships. Creating a ceremony that recognises and includes children can therefore be an important requirement for the family.
I recently conducted such a wedding at The Green Dragon, Cockleford in Gloucestershire. The bride and groom had two children of their own but were also expecting over 20 children amongst their guests. They therefore wanted their ceremony to be interesting and have meaning for their younger guests, as well as involving their sons. This also meant the ceremony needed to be reasonably short.
In addition, whilst the bride is English, the groom is of Chilean descent, and the couple wanted to reflect their diverse cultures in their wedding ceremony.
The ceremony was held outdoors, against a beautiful Cotswold backdrop. We began fairly informally, with the bride and groom already at the front, their sons on either side. Most of the guests were standing, and gathered around the couple, enabling everyone to feel part of the proceedings. The ceremony included a poem written by an acclaimed Chilean poet and relative of the groom. The couple took it in turns to read this, the groom in his native Spanish, with the bride reading an English translation. There was also a reading of “A Lovely Love Story”, by the British writer Edward Monkton, by one of the guests, which talks about love through the eyes of two dinosaurs. The couple’s sons, aged 5 and 7, were ring bearers.
The last part of the ceremony was a sand ceremony, which celebrated not just the union of the couple, but also the unification of the family through the marriage. They chose red, white, light blue and dark blue for the sand colours, representing the colours in the two national flags of the couple. In the background was a piece of music written and played by one of the grooms relatives.