Incorporating a Lasso Rosary in Your Catholic Wedding

marriage, wedding, sacrament, wife, husband, matrimony

marriage, wedding, sacrament, wife, husband, matrimonyWe are on the cusp of so many beautiful things these days, like spring, Easter and vacations. However, the one I’m most excited about is my daughter’s upcoming wedding. Anyone who has planned a wedding knows it can be quite daunting. Thankfully, we have beautiful traditions to choose from and to guide us as we prepare to walk down the aisle ourselves or send a son or daughter to the altar. My daughter has made the choice to use a lasso rosary during her ceremony, something my husband and I also used. If you’re considering incorporating this symbol as part of your ceremony, here is what you need to know.

How Did the Tradition Originate?

There is a lot of speculation about where this lovely tradition comes from. Some claim it dates back as far as the fourteenth century Aztec weddings. In those days, the couple would tie a corner of their long tunics together, thus tying the knot or becoming man and wife. This would explain why the lasso is more common in Hispanic weddings, though I was unable to find any official record of the tradition’s history.

What is a Lasso Rosary?

The lasso rosary is a long, white rosary constructed of large beads that are traditionally made from either white satin or silk. The colors are kept basic to keep them from clashing with the bride’s dress or the colors of the wedding. Two separate, complete rosary loops come off of the same centerpiece, so there are actually 3 total centerpieces.

The longer length is to accommodate two people as opposed to one. A beautiful crucifix hangs in the center and is placed directly between the couple to show God’s presence in the marriage. You can see one example of a lasso rosary here.

How is It Used?

The lasso comes into the ceremony just after the bride and groom have said their vows. The couple chooses one or two family members or friends (they can be from the bride and groom’s party) to help them during the prayer portion of the ceremony.

At that point, the Catholic tradition is to kneel on small pillows placed at the altar and then bow their heads for a prayer. The attendants step forward and drape the lasso around the couple’s shoulders, starting with the groom’s shoulder and then the bride’s shoulder to form a figure eight.

The figure eight is meant to be an infinity symbol (the sideways eight), representing eternity and demonstrating the couple’s commitment to a lifelong marriage. The figure eight is also a reminder that they will raise a family together, and their names will live on in their children and grandchildren.

Traditionally, the attendants are the godparents (a man and a woman), or a male friend and female friend, though it can really be anyone that the couple chooses.
Once the prayer is over, the lasso is left on for the remainder of the ceremony to show the bonds of marriage.

Why Do Some Catholic Couples Use the Lasso Rosary?

Couples choose to use the lasso for many reasons. Many do it to uphold an older Catholic tradition. They feel the lasso represents their faith and their commitment to God, as well as to one another.

Many families pass down the tradition to their children and grandchildren. Some do it to show a deep, spiritual commitment to one another, or a that they are re-dedicating themselves to the church as a married couple.

No matter the reason, the lasso rosary is a beautiful, ancient practice that many couples have found is a memorable way to bring prayer into the wedding. The lasso is also a lovely keepsake for the bride and groom that they can display in their house or use to pray together and remind themselves of their vows to one another.

And the Priest?

The priest will do one of two things during the binding of the couple. He sometimes speaks about the couple and the importance of their commitment to one another, or he may also express all of this in a prayer. Here is the prayer my daughter and her husband have approved for their wedding:

Dear Heavenly Father,

We ask that you look down upon these two and hold them in your hands,
Just as this rosary holds them and keeps them.

Together, with the help of your love and grace, they will strive to maintain their faith to you as well as to each other. With you, their marriage can have the strong foundation it needs to go on and grow deeper each day.

Please look after them, love them and help them remember to love one another in every way.

In the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, Amen.

An Additional Practice

Some couples, not all, choose to incorporate another traditional practice into the marriage ceremony while wearing the lasso: the coin ceremony or the ceremony of 13 gold coins. This is a very traditional, old-fashioned take on marriage, which some couples choose to do to honor their families or to show the trust between them.

Here’s how it works: the couple is presented with 13 gold coins, which are passed to the groom. He then pours the coins from his hands into the open hands of his bride to show that he will provide for her financially.

She then pours the coins back into his hands to show that she trusts him and acknowledges his efforts. The coins are then placed back in a special box or satchel and held by a family member. This traditional and lovely touch may be right for your wedding.

I hope your family has some beautiful weddings to look forward to this spring and summer. If so, remember to be thankful for these wonderful traditions we keep in our lives. They are so very precious.

Guest Contributor: Megan Dahle

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2 thoughts on “Incorporating a Lasso Rosary in Your Catholic Wedding”

  1. You’d think with a rosary the Blessed Mother would be in there somewhere. Kind of silly symbolism without her.

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