What to do if you’re not a regular church-goer but the whole idea of a traditional church wedding, including the boys choir, is something you would love?
Even if you forego the boys’ choir (I hear they’re rather thin on the ground), the singing of hymns is part of the traditional church service. Not only do you want to select hymns that are beautiful, you also want something your guests will know.
And even if you’re really uncomfortable about hymn singing at all during your ceremony, you will be surprised at how moving it can be on the day.
So now for the bit where we say that we’ve put together the ideal list of wedding hymns. There is a slight glitch, however, as no hymns have been expressly written with a wedding in mind. There is no rousing moment when you break into song about ‘taking this woman in the presence of God’…
Which leaves you having to choose roughly two or three hymns with little guidance. Choosing hymns that both of you know, would be a good place to start, and they need to be recognisable, vaguely popular hymns – unless you have booked that soaring boys’ choir, in which case, any hymn that they know, will do.
But before you, rather glibly, make a random choice of popular hymns, you might want to read all the words first. You don’t want to end up with a hymn that speaks of the difficulties and hardships of being human on your wedding day, so give hymns like Dear Lord and Father of mankind a skip.
And whilst Jerusalem may have found its way onto the recent royal wedding list, it might be the fact that it was also sung at Diana’s funeral and definitely at William and Harry’s schools that led to its inclusion, rather than its suitability for a wedding.
And their other choice of hymn, more commonly sang by the Welsh rugby team – Bread of Heaven – is probably worth giving a skip too.
Luckily the web is filled with popular wedding hymns lists, and mini recordings, so that you can listen to one or two lines. Put aside a few hours to make a selection, but bear in mind the following:
- The length of the hymn – too many verses and people will begin shuffling in their pews
- Consider the key in which they’re set – don’t go for hymns that are too high
- Remember it’s your decision (if you really want Jerusalem then go for it)
Happy Wedding Planning!