The mothers of the bride and groom or other representatives from each family are invited to each light one of the small candles and present them to the bride and groom or alternatiely they may light the candles at the start of the ceremony.
After the exchange of the rings, the bride and groom then each take one of the side candles and together light the larger center candle and replace the two smaller candles in their holders.
Parents, grandparents and children can also be included in the ceremony. Some couples opt to have the entire congregation involved. All guests are given a candle, and the first guest's is lit. Guests pass the flame until all are lit, and then the bride and groom together light their unity candle. This version represents the unity of friends and family supporting the couple in their marriage.
Unity candelabra may be purchased and the candles personalised with the names and the date, and used as a keepsake from the wedding.
The two outside candles have been lit by their families to represent their lives to this moment. The lights, representing the faith, wisdom and love _________ and ________ have received from their parents, are distinct, each burning alone.
________ and _________ are going to light their wedding candle, as a symbol of their marriage. The candles from which they light it represent each of them in the fullness of their personhood. They come into their marriage relationship as individuals and they do not lose their identity. Rather, they create through their commitment the relationship of marriage. Therefore, three candles remain lighted, one for each of them and one for their marriage as symbols of their commitment to each other and to a lasting and loving marriage."
As this one light burns undivided, so shall their love be one with God. From now on their thoughts shall be for each other rather than for their individual selves. Their joys and sorrows shall be shared alike.
Unity Sand Ceremony
This is a great alternative to the Unity Candle ceremony. It can be performed indoors or outdoors where candles staying lit could be a problem. It is especially popular at beach weddings. After the wedding, the vases are a lovely unique keepsake from that special day and can be displayed in a prominent place in the home. The mixing and blending of the sand symbolises the fact that just as the grains of sand are combined and can never be separated and put back into separate containers, so should the lives of the couple be.
The Unity Sand ceremony incorporates two small containers of sand (usually coloured) and a larger container into which the smaller containers are emptied.
The scope for this ceremony is varied. Parents and grandparents and children from previous marriages can be included (using additional containers of coloured sand) to make this a truly blended ceremony.
The groom begins by pouring a portion of sand from his container into the central container.
The bride follows by pouring a portion of her sand into the same container to create a layered effect.
To complete the ceremony together they pour the remainder of their sand into the container.
During the Unity Sand ceremony, the following is an example of what may be said by the officiant:
Today , _________ and ___________, you are making a commitment of your eternal love for one another. As you each hold your sand the separate containers of sand represent your lives to this moment; individual and unique. You come into your marriage relationship as individuals and you do not lose your identity. Rather, you create through your commitment the relationship of marriage.
As each individual’s sand is poured into the family’s one united common container, the individual containers of sand will no longer exist, but will be joined together as one. Just as the grains of sand can never be separated and poured again into the individual containers, so will become the bond with your family. From now on your thoughts shall be for each other rather than for your individual selves. Your joys and sorrows shall be shared alike.
As you now combine your sand together so shall your love, undivided, be one with God.
Unity Water Ceremony
The creating of a new colour together from the mixing of two other colors symbolizes the new union.
The Unity Water ceremony incorporates two small glasses of different coloured water and a larger glass into which the smaller glasses are emptied creating a third color.
You should experiment with the coloured water long before the wedding, to find a combination that creates a colour you really like. You may even be able to use the colors from your wedding theme.
If the bride and groom have children, each child may be included and given a smaller glass of the same colour water as the parent to pour into the container. THE CEREMONY
The groom begins by pouring the water from his glass into the central container.
The bride follows by pouring the water from her glass into the same container.
Duringthe Unity Water ceremony, the following is an example of what may be said by the officiant:
__________ holds the container of yellow water. Yellow is the color of sunshine. The color yellow represents joy and happiness. It also stands for wisdom. __________ holds the container of blue water. First prize gets the blue ribbon. Blue represents confidence and trust. A "true blue" friend is faithful and trustworthy. __________ and __________, this empty vessel between you represents your marriage. It is a new beginning in your relationship with each other. __________ as you pour your yellow water into the container you bring sunshine and wisdom to your marriage. And __________ as you pour your blue water into the marriage vessel, you bring confidence, trust and loyalty to your marriage. The blending of the yellow and blue water creates green, representing the blending of your lives together as one. The color green represents stability, endurance, growth and harmony. May your marriage reflect these qualities. May your energies in this marriage blend just as equally as your give freely of yourself while honoring the greatness of each other.