Bible Readings are popular in in any religious wedding ceremony. The following are just some of my personal favorites for you to pick from. Of course, you are welcome to pick your own favorites…
1 Corinthians 13 (New International Version)
If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor, and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing.”
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil, but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when perfection comes, the imperfect disappears. When I was a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me. Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
Modern Version Of Paul to the Corinthians
Love is patient and kind; love is not jealous or boastful; it is not arrogant or rude. Love does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrong, but rejoices in the right. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends.
(Bible, part 1 Cor 13)
The Catholic version.
It is not the extraordinary things that make life worthwhile but the love that we share with those around us- a love that comes from God. Let us be eager to learn how to love with this kind of love ‘which will never fade away’
A reading from the first letter of Paul to the Corinthians (12:31-13:8)
Be ambitious for the higher gifts. And I am going to show you a way that is better than any of them. If I have all the eloquence of men or of angels, but speak without love, I am simply a gong booming or a cymbal clashing. If I have the gift of prophesy, understanding all the mysteries there are, and knowing everything, and if I have faith in all its fullness, to move mountains, but without love, then I am nothing at all. If I give away all that I possess, peice by peice, and if I even let them take my body to burn it, but I am without love, it will do me no good whatever. Love is always patient and kind; it is never jealous; love is never boastful or conceited; it is never rude or selfish; it does not take offence, and is not resentful. Love takes no pleasure in other people’s sins but delights in the truth; it is always ready to excuse, to trust, to hope, and to endure whatever comes. Love does not come to an end.
A reading from the letter of Paul to the Colossians
You are God’s chosen race, his saints; he loves you, and you should be clothed in sincere compassion, in kindness and humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with one another; forgive each other as soon as a quarrel begins. The Lord has forgiven you; now you must do the same. Over all these clothes, to keep them together and complete them, put on love. And may the peace of Christ reign in your hearts, because it is for this that you were called together as parts of one body. Always be thankful. The word of the Lord.
Blessed are the man and the woman who have grown beyond themselves and have seen through their separations. They delight in the way things are and keep their hearts open, day and night. They are like trees planted near flowing rivers, which bear fruit when they are ready. Their leaves will not fall or wither. Everything they do will succeed.
Entreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: For whither thou goest, I will go, And where thou lodgest, I will lodge. Thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God. Where thou diest, will I die, and there will I be buried. The Lord do so to me, and more also, if ought but death part thee and me.
(Ruth 1: 16-17)
Song of Solomon
The voice of my beloved! Behold, he comes, leaping upon the mountains, bounding over the hills. My beloved speaks and says to me: “Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away; O my dove, in the clefts of the rock, ‘in the covert of the cliff, let me see your face, let me hear your voice, for your voice is sweet, and your face is comely. My beloved is mine and I am his. Set me as a seal upon your heart, as a seal upon your arm; for love is strong as death, jealousy is cruel as the grave. Its flashes are flashes of fire, a most vehement flame. Many waters cannot quench love, neither can floods drown it.
(Song of Solomon 2: 8-10,14,16a. 8:6-7a)
Reading from the book of Genesis
The Lord God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone. I will make him a helpmate.” So from the soil the Lord God fashioned all the wild beast and all the birds of heaven. These he brought to the man to see what he would call them; each one was to bear the name the man would give it.
The man gave names to all the cattle, all the birds of heaven and all the wild beasts. But no helpmate suitable for the man was found for him.
So the Lord God made the man fall into deep sleep. And while he slept, he took one of his ribs and enclosed it in flesh. The Lord God built the rib he had taken from the man into a woman, and brought her to the man. The man exclaimed: “This at last is bone from my bones, and flesh from my flesh!
This is to be called woman, for this was taken from man” This is why a man leaves his father and mother and joins himself to his wife and they become one body.
The word of the Lord .
Photo by ♔ Georgie R