They go by different names - ceremony programme, order of service,  service sheet - but they all have details of the ceremony.

Even if your ceremony guests aren't expected to do anything more strenuous than be there, a programme is still a nice touch.  Most will feel more comfortable if they know what is going to happen and roughly how long the ceremony is going to take.

If you are expecting your guests to take part in the ceremony (for example singing) then a programme is a great way to encourage participation. 

Programmes also make nice mementoes for your guests to keep.

They are often printed on A4 sheets folded in half to make a four-page A5-sized booklet.  If you're feeling really fancy, you could add a heavy card cover and tie the booklet together with fine cord.

Some wedding invitations have matching paper or card  to use for ceremony programmes, menus, etc. - it might be worth checking if this is available for the invitations you've chosen.  If not, large stationery shops carry a range of special paper and matching card. 

What is often included:


  • Ceremony Programme (or whatever you're calling it)

  • A picture - perhaps a recent photo of you both, or baby photos or even a montage of photos of you both growing up. 

  • Marriage of
    Your names
    Day and date. 

  • The name of the ceremony venue


  • Details of the ceremony ... for example:
  • The procession (name of the music you have chosen) 

  • Introduction/welcome (name of person) 

  • Song or hymn: Title and words  

  • The marriage between ... 

  • Song or hymn: Title and words

  • The Sermon (if it has a title put it here) 

  • The signing of the register 

  • Song or hymn: Title and words

  • The recession: (name of the music you have chosen) 


  • The details of any readings and who is reading them, you can include the full text of the reading if you want to

  • Any parts of the ceremony where the guests participate - like prayers or parts where they need to say something


  • The roles and names of your attendants, celebrant, etc.

  • What happens next - for example "Please go to The Old Mill for some light refreshments while Sue & Paul have their photos taken" or "Please assemble outside for a group photo"

  • Names of guests (if they'll fit!)

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