The readings below are only popular suggestions. They can be shortened or other choices used.
The hymn to love (St Paul’s first letter to the Church in Corinth, 1 Corinthians 13)
If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give all that I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing.
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no records of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophecy in part, but when perfection comes, the imperfect disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child. When I became an adult, I put childish things behind me. Now we see but a poor reflection in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, as I am fully known.
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
The creation of humankind (The book of Genesis 1:26–28,31)
Then God said: Let Us make man in Our image, after Our likeness, and let them bear rule over the fish in the sea, over the birds of the air, over the animals; over the whole earth and over all creeping things that crawl on the earth. So God created man in His image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.
God blessed them; God said to them: Be fruitful; multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; bear rule over the fish of the sea; over the birds of the air and over every living, moving creature on earth. God saw that everything He had made was excellent, indeed.
All families derive from God (St Paul’s letter to the Church in Ephesus, Ephesians 3:14–end)
I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth takes its name, that He may grant you, in keeping with the wealth of His glory, to be empowered with strength in the inner self by His Spirit; that through faith the Christ may dwell in your hearts, that you may be rooted and grounded in love, in order that you may have power to understand with all the saints what is the breadth, the length, the depth, and the height, in fact to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled up to the whole fullness of God.
Now to Him who is able according to the power that works within us to do everything immeasurably far beyond what we pray or think of, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus through all generations for ever and ever, Amen.
Jesus’ commandment to love as he loves (John’s Gospel 15:9–12)
Jesus said, ‘Just as the Father has loved Me, so I have loved you; continue in this love of Mine. You will remain in My love if you keep My commands, just as I keep My Father’s commands and remain in His love.
I have talked these matters over with you so that My joy may be in you and your joy be made complete. This is My command, that you love one another as I have loved you.’
We are to be clothed with love (St Paul’s letter to the Colossians, Colossians 3:12–17)
As God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience. Bear with one another and, if anyone has a complaint against another, forgive each other; just as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.
And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in the one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly; teach and admonish one another in all wisdom; and with gratitude in your hearts sing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs to God.
And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.