Wedding receptions may be rife with fun and excitement, but it’s the ceremony that serves as the heartbeat of the big day. The first kiss, the reading of the vows, the exchanging of the wedding rings, the confetti toss—there’s nothing like these tender moments to evoke all the feels. A wedding may spill with emotion from beginning to end, but the feelings reach peak levels in a wedding ceremony—it doesn’t get more real than when you’re literally promising to spend the rest of your life with someone. And when those emotions are captured unfiltered on camera, what could be more priceless?
We’ve scoured the wedding ceremony universe to find some of the best captures of these swoon-worthy, tear-inducing, and heartfelt moments. Scroll down to see true love at its finest—we promise each one will hit you straight in the heart as much as they’ll excite you and heighten your anticipation for your own turn at the altar.
Seriously, what melts your heart more than a crying groom? Not much, we think, but there are a few close seconds—a bride’s emotional reading of her vows or her reaction to hearing her partner’s vows, the significance of slipping the wedding rings on each finger, the timeless beauty of religious ceremonies, and those intimate touches, coveted looks, and in between moments you just can’t put into words.
And while we love the sweet and tender moments, we also love the joyful—like a burst of laughter at the altar, the elation of the newlyweds following the first kiss, or that “just married” look they have etched across their faces as they exit the aisle hand-in-hand.
We’ve gathered it all—from excitement and joy to the heartfelt and compassionate, there’s some serious wedding ceremony magic right here that promises to tug on your heartstrings.
See more: 37 Romantic First Look Wedding Photos