THE PROCESSIONAL

This is how we get the JP, wedding party and parents to the front. The JP is to come in first followed by those groomsmen not escorting, then groomsmen that have someone to escort like parents or grandparents who are seated during procession, then groom with his parent(s), then ring bearer, bride’s maid individually, flower girl, bell ringer, then bride.

The groom and groomsmen may enter the ceremony area first. The groom takes his place, the best man stands next to him, and the groomsmen line up beside the best man in the order they’ll be recessing, from first to last. The bridesmaids enter from the rear, or from the end of whatever aisle has been created for the occasion, in the reverse order that they’ll be recessing. For example, if Sally will be the last bridesmaid to recess, she walks down the aisle first and takes the farthest spot away from where the bride will stand. The maid of honor follows the bridesmaids and takes her place next to where the bride will stand. She’s followed by the flower girl(s) and the ring bearer.

The bride, of course, comes last. As a rule, whatever music has been played for the attendants stops, and the bridal processional music begins, then the bride walks down the aisle. She can be accompanied by one or both parents, a relative or friend, or she may walk alone.

This processional order can vary based on whether you’re including religious traditions in your wedding. If your officiant belongs to a particular faith or denomination, consult her about the traditional processional order.

Sample Processional

  • JP stands at the alter/front.
  • Groom and Best Man enter from a side door and stand at the altar, Groom stands to the right and Best Man stands to the right of the Groom
  • Bridesmaids and Ushers walk in pairs (if there are uneven numbers, the odd person can walk alone, or two maids or groomsmen can walk together). Ushers stand to the right of the best man. Bridesmaids stand to the left leaving room for the Bride and Maid or Matron of Honor.
  • The Maid or Matron of Honor walks alone and stand to the left of the Groom and to the Right of the Bridesmaids.
  • The Ring Bearer walks alone
  • The Flower Girl walks alone, or the children can walk together.
  • The Bride and her Father proceed, with the Bride on her Father’s right arm.

At the altar/front:

  • The bride stands on the left
  • The groom on the right, facing the officiant
  • The best man stands beside the groom, with the ring bearer and ushers to his right
  • The maid of honor stands beside the bride, with the flower girl and bridesmaids to her left. (If your child attendants are too young to stand quietly throughout the wedding ceremony, it’s fine to have them stop at the end of the aisle and sit with a waiting parent.)