Selecting Music for Your Catholic Wedding Mass
Congratulations on your engagement! As you prepare for your Wedding Mass, I've listed seven music options you have to begin thinking about before meeting to plan the music for your Wedding Mass. If you are interested in booking me for your Mass, you can inquire my availability on the Contact and Booking page.
The music for the Wedding Mass can be chanted antiphons or hymns/songs that are appropriate for the Liturgy. To see the antiphons for the Wedding Mass, you can see the chants on illuminarepublications.com. If you would prefer to use hymns/songs, you can reference publisher websites like ocp.org and worshiptogether.com. Note that not all songs on these websites are appropriate for the Liturgy, but they provide a great resource for finding songs. Here is a playlist of song ideas that can be used for the Entrance Procession, Offertory, a song after Communion, and the Recessional:
1) Entrance Procession
Music for the entrance procession can include one or two songs, depending on if you'd like a different song for the bride's entrance and procession from the rest of the bridal party procession. Many couples prefer an instrumental song for this part of the Mass, with the most popular song being Canon in D. Any song that is appropriate for Mass can be used for the entrance procession.
2) Responsorial Psalm
The Responsorial Psalm is a sung form of scripture between the 1st and 2nd Reading, so it must use the exact text from the Psalms found in the Bible. A complete text of approved Psalms for weddings are found on the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops website: foryourmarriage.com/responsorial-psalms. Below I've listed the approved Psalm refrains, most of which I've already arranged. If you find a Psalm text below that I have not yet arranged, I can arrange the Psalm for your wedding.
Psalm 33 The Earth Is Full of the Goodness of the Lord
Psalm 34 I Will Bless the Lord At All Times
Psalm 34 - Taste and See the Goodness of the Lord
Psalm 34 Taste and See the Goodness of the Lord (Version 2)
Psalm 103 The Lord Is Kind and Merciful
Psalm 103 The Lord Is Kind and Merciful (Version 2)
Psalm 103 The Lord's Kindness Is Everlasting to Those Who Fear Him
Psalm 112 Blessed the Man Who Greatly Delights in the Lord's Commands
Psalm 128 Blessed Are Those Who Fear the Lord
Psalm 128 See How the Lord Blesses Those Who Fear Him
Psalm 145 The Lord Is Compassionate Toward All His Works
Psalm 148 Let All Praise the Name of the Lord
Music during the Preparation of the Gifts, also called the Offertory chant/hymn, can be any song/hymn/chant that is appropriate to the Mass. Typically, it's ideal to find a song that relates to the Gospel or the Wedding liturgy as a whole.
Music during Communion can be any song/hymn/chant that is appropriate for the Mass and reflects this moment in the liturgy. During Communion, all those who receive the Eucharist become one with Christ, and through Christ are all united as one. Songs that speak of unity (use "we" as opposed to "I") are particularly encouraged. If Communion is long enough, you can select two songs, with the second being a song of praise and thanksgiving.
To select songs in the YouTube playlist above, click the top left menu button or use the "previous" and "next" buttons on either side of the "play" button once the video has begun.
Adoro te Devote (We Adore You)
Behold the Lamb of God
Blessed Are You, Lord
Bread of Heaven
Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence
Miracle of Grace (Bread of Life)
O Sacrament, Most Holy
O Salutaris Hostia/O Saving Lamb
We Come to You
5) Flowers to Mary
This is not an official part of the liturgy, but it's become a tradition for the couple to offer flowers to an image/statue of Mary and spend a few moments praying and asking for her intercession. Any Marian hymn can be used during this time, such as the Salve Regina.
Any song that is appropriate for the liturgy can be used as a Recessional/Closing hymn, especially if it reflects joy, thanksgiving, and praise to God.
7) Mass Setting
Typically, it is best to select an entire Mass setting so that the music throughout the Mass flows together and shows that the Mass is one prayer. This includes music for the Gloria, Gospel Acclamation (Alleluia, except in Lent when another acclamation is used), Holy, Memorial Acclamation, Amen, and Lamb of God. I've listed a few popular Mass settings below.
What Music is Not Appropriate for the Mass?
Music that does not reference God
Music that contains lyrics that "sing to one another", and might only reference God on the side (unless it's quoting scripture, since scripture is appropriate for the Mass)
Music that contains lyrics that are inconsistent with Catholic theology
If you have any questions about specific songs, always feel free to ask through an email. Enjoy this blessed time of preparing for the Sacrament of Marriage!