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Catholic Weddings

Vow only questions

Hi! I have a couple of questions for you girls. My fiance and I are getting married next month and we are having the cermony at his church. I have never been to a Catholic wedding before so this has definatly been a challange! My questions are....-Does the bridal party sit or stand at a vow only ceremony? Our director incourages them to sit in the first pew but my fiances brother who got married at the same church has them all stand the whole time.-The director is really big on us presenting flowers to Mary at the end of the ceremony. I have never heard of this and it seems a little weired to go to a corner of the room and drop off flowers since there is no statue or anything to put them by.What do you girls think? Thanks!

Re: Vow only questions

  • edited December 2011
    depends on your church.  my girls sat in the first pew, my MOH sat on the alter next to me.  she stood during vows.  we did not present flowers.  i have seen it, and it's actually quite popular, but not necessary nor part of a traditional ceremony.  esp. since you aren't catholic, i wouldn't go overboard with things that might not even mean much to you?  (not snarky at all, just figuring keep it simple)
  • edited December 2011
    I think the BP can either sit or stand. If you aren't doing a mass (just the ceremony), it will still be about 30-40 minutes depending on readings and how long winded the priest is, so I'd let them sit if possible.And for the flowers to Mary, I am Catholic and my priest asked me if we were doing that and I said no. His response: "Oh, good. All that does is extend the length of the ceremony. So many people don't realize it shouldn't even be done, unless it is extremely important to you as a couple."So, I'd say skip the flowers to Mary. If it's not important to you, don't let anyone talk you into doing it.
  • edited December 2011
    I recommend having them sit.  The ceremony is still about 40 minutes long.  That's a long time for them to stand.  It would be weird during the readings anyway.  We did the flowers to Mary.  Mary is an important figure in the Catholic faith, and presenting the flowers is a symbol of honoring her and sort of asking her to watch over your marriage.  I'm sure someone else can explain it much better than I can.Read up on the tradition and the symbolism and decide whether it is important to you and your FI.
  • Calypso1977Calypso1977 member
    Knottie Warrior 2500 Comments 25 Love Its First Answer
    edited December 2011
    our MOH and Best man sat on teh altar with us.  we didnt have a party.  at my cousin's wedding, no one was up there with them and the entire party sat in the first pews. i regret now, not doing flowers for mary. 
  • edited December 2011
    our entire bridal party stood with us for the entire ceremony (about 30 minutes, no mass). it just depends on what you want them to do. We didn't decide until the day before during rehearsal when everyone felt that yes, they could stand for that long. We had chairs waiting for in case someone got faint and everyone knew to ask someone next to them for a chair and to watch each other's wobbliness haha. no one needed a chair.
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  • edited December 2011
    I've never seen a BP forced to stand through an entire Catholic ceremony, but at a wedding I went to in March, the BP was asked to stand during the vows in support of the couple.If there's no place to go to present flowers to Mary, and if it's not a priority for you anyway, just skip it.HTH!Kathleen
  • Tuneful_BrideTuneful_Bride member
    edited December 2011
    Let the BP sit, and don't do the presentation if it's not meaningful to you. Ask if you can substitute lighting a unity candle in that spot. Some parishes will let you do that. Also, call the church office and have them check the church calendar for upcoming weddings. You can "crash" the ceremonies. Just ask to be seated towards the back of the church. That way, you can observe a few Catholic ceremonies and know what to expect. My mom and my DH had never been to Catholic wedding, either, so they crashed a ceremony where I was singing, and they took one of the extra programs left at the end of the ceremony. My priest thought it was fine.
  • jobiannjobiann member
    edited December 2011
    I agree with PP, our bridal party is not standing with us during the entire ceremony, we are having mass and with the size of our guest list the ceremony will likely be pushing 50 to 60 minutes.  I'm not even sure if I can stand that long!!  And I recommend not doing the flowers to Mary if the ceremony itself isn't meaningful to you and/or your FI.  There is just no sense on dragging it out unless something has meaning.  We are doing the unity candle (yes I know ladies, not a true Catholic element) but it is important to FI and our families and our church allows it.  Our readings and songs are very short to make up a bit of time for the long communion time we will likely experience. 

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