Remembering those who have passed away, on your wedding day

Your wedding day is a big day. For you and your husband or wife to be, it’ll be one of the biggest days of your lives. It’s the kind of day you want everybody important to you there with you, supporting you.

So if someone important to you – whether it be a friend or a family member – isn’t there to celebrate with you because they’ve passed away, it can be really hard. Both because they’re not there, and because you might not know how you want to remember them on this special day.

Before I go into all the options there for remembering your loved ones, let me say there is no right way and no wrong way. Some ways of remembering your loved ones as part of your wedding are public and some are private. However you choose to remember those who aren’t there – just do what feels right for you. Below I’ve included a few of the more popular options.

This is something I have included for couples as part of their ceremony welcome before:

As we celebrate (couple’s names) wedding today, they wish to honour the memory of those friends and family who are no longer here to share in the love, fun and emotion of this special day.

While not here in person, we know, today, they are with us in spirit and will live on forever in many of your hearts.

With them watching over us, let us go on to celebrate this wonderful couple’s wedding with hearts full of love and joy.

Some choose to personalise this with details of the people they’re remembering, others prefer to leave it like this.

I’ve also had couples leave a seat empty with a card on it explaining who this seat is saved for.

I’ve been to weddings where they leave talking about what the day would mean to their loved one until the speeches at the reception.

And I’ve seen weddings featuring candles burning for their loved ones. There are many companies who will personalise candles with details of those you have lost if that’s something you want to do.

Personally I chose to have my bouquet feature my Grandad’s favourite colour (yellow) and wore my great-grandmother’s pearls as my something old. Nobody but my close family knew the symbolism of these things and I was happy with that.

If for you, the most appropriate thing to do is to take some time before the wedding to be alone and remember them, then that is absolutely what you should do.

Even if you are missing someone special on your big day, I hope you have a wonderful day with all the people who are there with you. Wherever you’re going to marry, congratulations and happy planning xx

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