When I was married, my mother made me a beautiful unity candle with matching tapers. It was simple, white and had a special poem in the center of it. I never really thought about why we used a unity candle. It was just a tradition that my family did.
I didn’t realize the significance behind the candles or what it meant when we lit them for the first time. I had so many other elements that I wanted to bring into my wedding, that I was so focused on anything else. It wasn’t until after the wedding, as I put the unity candle away for safe keeping that I realized the importance of a Unity candle.
Maybe it should have been clear to me; a unity candle is used in a wedding to symbolize a union. It can mean different things to different people, cultures and ceremonies but generally it is a symbol of two families uniting to become one.
There are many ways that they can be used and a couple can plan on using only one candle or a couple can use three, usually the one pillar candle accompanied by two tapered candles.
One of the most common ways to use the unity candle is to have the tapered candles lit at the beginning of the wedding so that during the wedding ceremony, the groom and bride can use the two candles to light the unity candle itself. However, there are different ways to use the candles and one that has both significance and tradition behind it is to have the parents of the couple light the tapers before the bride and groom use them to light the pillar.
After the wedding, it may not seem as though there are a lot of reason to keep the candles, except for memory’s sake but that isn’t true. It is tradition for a married couple to light the unity candle each year on their anniversary.
This tradition signifies the unity that they have shared for the last year or years and the love, friendship and dreams that have been nurtured for those years. It also signifies a renewal of the vows and a promise of a happy future for the year to come.
Unity candles are very important to many couples when they start their life together as man and wife and we would like to share those important moments with you on this site.
So to welcome you to the site, I would like to leave you with a Celtic Wedding vow that was written by Morgan Llywelyn.
Celtic Wedding Vow
by Morgan Llywelyn
“You cannon possess me for I belong to myself
But while we both wish it, I give you that which is mine to give
You cannon command me, for I am a free person
But I shall serve you in those ways you require
and the honeycomb will taste sweeter coming from my hand
“I pledge to you that yours will be the name I cry aloud in the night
and the eyes into which I smile in the morning
I pledge to you the first bite of my meat and the first drink from my cup
I pledge to you my living and my dying, each equally in your care
I shall be a shield for your back and you for mine
I shall not slander you, nor you me
I shall honor you above all others, and when we quarrel we shall do so in private and
tell no strangers our grievances
“This is my wedding vow to you.
This is the marriage of equals.”