Continued: Padrinos y Madrinas: The Wedding Sponsors

Modern Latino Couples Struggle with Incorporating Sponsors into the Wedding

Latino bride with grandfather
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Page 1: Padrinos y Madrinas: The Wedding Sponsors

Ceremonial Sponsors

The primary sponsors accept responsibility for an aspect of the marriage ceremony. These roles are typically filled by married couples who the groom and bride respect. Padres often require that the participants are members of the Catholic Church.




Serves as a witness to the wedding and signs the marriage certificate. This is most often a couple who has a strong, lasting marriage or the primary godparents chosen during baptism. As the official hosts of the wedding, this couple assumes the largest financial responsibility. They are also responsible for spiritually guiding the bride and groom through conflicts. 


As sponsors of the vigil, makes church arrangements and pays for the priest and choir.


Hosts the lazo unity ritual by purchasing the silk ribbon or double wedding rosary and placing it on the shoulders of the couple during the ceremony to bless and bind the marriage. 


Buys the prayer pillow that the couple kneels on during the nuptial mass.

Libro y Rosario

Presents the couple with their marriage prayer book and rosary.


Oversees the unity candle ceremony by purchasing three candles and lighting the two outside candles as a symbol of their sponsorship of the marriage.


Sponsors the arras unity ceremony by presenting the couple with 13 gold or silver coins to bestow blessings of prosperity upon the marriage.


Pays for the wedding rings.


The los primeros madrina (primary godmother) hosts the bridal shower.

Optional Padrinos y Madrinas

Couples can also ask sponsors to host traditional elements of the wedding reception and ceremony. Although these secondary positions are optional, they can cover any item that is needed for the celebration, so you can ask as many people as you want. 




Buys the bride's wedding jewelry. 


Purchases the flowers for the church and reception hall, the bouquets and boutonnieres, and the offering for the Virgin Mary. 


Arranges the photography to preserve the special day. 


Hires the musicians or DJ for the ceremony and reception. 


Pays for the wedding cake. 


Coordinates the planning and purchase of the wedding invitations. 

Libro de Invitados

Buys the guest book and hosts the sign-in at the reception. 

Programas y tarjetas de asiento 

Works with the bride and groom to plan the seating chart and create the place cards as well as write and print the programs. 


Organizes the beverages for the reception. 

Copas y brindis

Purchase the toasting glasses for the head table and immediate family. 

When invited to be a padrinos or madrinas, it is crucial that you coordinate with the couple to ensure you buy the items and colors they want. You can also request an estimate and give the couple the money. 

Although it rare for someone to not follow through with their commitment, emergencies inevitably happen, so it is wise for the bride and groom to save money to cover these expenses.