|Here are three examples of ceremonies I have performed. Feel free to mix and match or change things entirely. This is your special day and I want you to have words that are particularly meaningful to you both. Please print it out, take time to go over it together, circle the things you would like to keep, X through the things to take out, make notes and adjustments and fax it all to 928-282-1012. I will organize a first draft and fax it back for your approval. We can also discuss things by phone or in person. Call toll-free 877-283-3969. My cell is 928-300-7092. My goal is to accomplish the perfect ceremony for you. Another way to communicate is via email: email@example.com. It's all for YOU. If you would like to add readings from your favorite poets or get ideas, click here. It is a well-organized poetry site. JC|
|Gathering Words I||Gathering Words II||Gathering Words III|
We have been invited here today to witness and celebrate the uniting in marriage of ________and________. They are taking the first step of their new beginning; their new life together.
The ability and desire for one human being to love another is perhaps the most precious and fulfilling gift that has been entrusted to us. It is an all- consuming task, a lifelong endeavor. It is a journey we have been preparing for all our lives.
Loving someone is a reason to stretch beyond our limits, to become for the sake of the other. It is to look into the soul of your beloved and accept what you see. Loving is the ultimate commitment which challenges humans to become all we are meant to be.
As they join in marriage today, ______and _______ are announcing to the world that they are welcoming that challenge.
|Let is take a moment to open our hearts to Love's presence revealed in the nature around us....in the earth and sky, in the trees, the breeze, the sounds, the songs of the birds....Also let us be aware of that same presence as it stirs within us, expressing itself through our emotions of joy and happiness...but most importantly as it radiates in the love of _________and ________.||
Let us pray. God, we ask for your blessings upon this man and woman (couple) as we celebrate this momentous occasion in their lives.
Grant them happiness and contentment as they establish their new home, create a new family and explore the depths of their love for one another and for You.
Bless their families and friends and the relationships which have supported, strengthened and sustained them throughout their lives.
Bless their home as a place of love and of peace.
And, if times grow hard and tempers grow short, help them to look into their hearts and remember the love that brought them here today. Amen.
|Support from Family I||Support from Family II||Your Notes...|
The marriage of ________and ________is more than just the union of two people in love, It's also the joining of two families, of two sets of friends and of two patterns of life.
Who stands with this woman in support and blessing of this marriage?
Father of the bride: "Her mother and I do."
Who stands with this man in support and blessing of this marriage?
Father of the groom: "His mother and I do"
As these two people join together in marriage, they ask for the support and love of their families and friends.
|Marriage is the supreme sharing of experiences, an adventure in the most intimate of human relationships. It is the union of two people whose friendship has grown and matured to the place where they now desire to share life together as one. I wish to say to all of you here today that the future of _________'s and ________'s home together depends also upon you. It is through your thoughts, your feelings and your acts that you can help strengthen their bond. For you see, marriage does not thrive in isolation, but rather in the fellowship of family and friends. ________and __________welcome the wisdom and strength of their family and friends to help their love grow, for it is through this love that they themselves have grown.|
|Charge to Couple I||Irish Blessing||Your Notes....|
This is a new beginning for both of you and I'd like to offer some gentle reminders to ease your life-long task of living and growing together. Be kind to each other. And when you disagree, do it respectfully.
Be gentle and forgiving with each other. When you forgive, your hearts make room for a little more love, a little more understanding, and a little more compassion.
Communicate with each other. Share the joy that's in your heart and the sorrow that burdens your soul. Open your hearts to each other and find love.
|May the road rise to meet you. May the wind be always at your back. May the sun shine warm upon your face, the rains fall soft upon the fields. May the light of friendship guide your paths together. May the laughter of children grace the halls of your home. May the joy of living for one another trip a smile from your lips, a twinkle from your eye. And when eternity beckons at the end of a life heaped high with love, may the good Lord embrace you with the arms that have nurtured you the whole length of your joy-filled days. May the gracious God hold you both in the palm of His hands, And today, may the Spirit of Love find a dwelling place in your hearts. Amen.|
|Consent I||Unity Candle Lighting||Possible Readings|
_________, do you here, in the presence of family, declare your love for and commitment to _________, choosing her as your life partner and soul mate? Do you freely offer yourself to her and willingly accept the gift of self she offers to you?
Groom: "I do!"
_________, do you here, in the presence of family, declare your love for and commitment to _________, choosing him as your life partner and soul mate? Do you freely offer yourself to him and willingly accept the gift of self he offers to you?
Bride: "I do!"
The lighting of the Unity candle symbolizes the joining together of these two hearts into one. From this moment on, the light of your love burns jointly as your inner candles continue to burn separately. May the path of life become brighter as the flame of your love grows stronger.
(If there are children involved in this wedding, you may wish to include them in the Unity Candle--please ask me for specifics on what could be said in this situation)
Sonnet XLIII by Elizabeth Barrett Browning
How do I love thee? Let me count the ways. I love thee to the depth and breadth and height my soul can reach, when feeling out of sight for the ends of Being and ideal Grace. I love thee to the level of everyday's most quiet need, by sun and candle-light. I love thee freely, as men strive for Right; I love thee purely, as they turn from Praise. I love thee with the passion put to use in my old griefs, and with my childhood's faith. I love thee with a love I seemed to lose with my lost saints, -- I love thee with the breath, smiles, tears, of all my life!--and, if God choose, I shall but love thee better after death.
|Vows I||Vows II||Vows III|
Please repeat after me:
Groom: I, ________, take you, _________, to be my wife: to love you when you drive me crazy, to respect you when we disagree, to support you if bad times come our way, and to always remember how grateful I am to have you by my side.
Bride: I, ________, take you, _________, to be my husband: to love you when you drive me crazy, to respect you when we disagree, to support you if bad times come our way, and to always remember how grateful I am to have you by my side.
To Groom: Take _______by the hand and say to her:
_________, I take you to be my wife; to share with you the laughter, to kiss away the tears, and to give you all the love in my heart as long as we both shall live.
To Bride: Take _______by the hand and say to him:
_________, I take you to be my husband; to share with you the laughter, to kiss away the tears, and to give you all the love in my heart as long as we both shall live.
Each of you reads this to each other:
__________, my promise to you is but a simple one. I will love you today and every day that follows until the end of time. With the passing of every minute, my love grows stronger and my devotion grows deeper. I will love and cherish you until me eyes can no longer see your beauty, my ears can no longer hear your loving words, and my hands can no longer feel your tender caress. From this moment until my dying breath, you are my love--you are my life.
|Rings||Possible Readings||More Possible Readings|
The ring is an ancient symbol, so perfect and simple. It has no beginning and has no end. It is round like the sun, like the moon, like the eye, like arms that embrace. It is a circle, for love that is given comes back 'round again.
Your rings are precious because you wear them with love. They symbolize your com- mitment in marriage. They remind you of who you are, where you've been, and where you're going. As you wear them through time, they will reflect not only who you are as individuals, but also who you are as a couple.
______, as you place the ring on ______'s finger, please repeat after me:
"You are the love of my life, and you are my very best friend."
______, as you place the ring on ______'s finger, please repeat after me:
"You are the love of my life, and you are my very best friend."
May these rings remind you that your love, like the sun, warms all that it touches. Like the moon, it brightens up the night. And, like the eye, it is a gateway to your innermost soul. And your love, like the arms that embrace you, makes everything right in the world.
Now you will feel no rain, for each of you will be shelter to the other.
Now you will feel no cold, for each of you will be warmth to the other.
Now there is no loneliness for you; now there is no more loneliness.
Now you are two bodies, but there is only one life before you.
Go now to your dwelling place, to enter into your days together. And may your days be good and long on the earth.
From A Navajo Wedding Ceremony
Now you have lit a fire and that fire should not go out. The two of you now have a fire that represents love, understanding and a philosophy of life. It will give you heat, food, warmth and happiness. The new fire respresents a new beginning--a new life and a new family. The fire should keep burning; you should stay together. You have lit the fire for life until old age separates you.
From The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran
You were born together and together you shall be forevermore. You shall be together when the white wings of death scatter your days. Ay, you shall be together even in the silent memory of God. But, let there be spaces in your togetherness, and let the winds of heavens dance between you. Love one another but make not a bond of love. Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls. Fill each other's cup but drink not from one cup. Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf. Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone even as the strings of a lute are alone though they quiver with the same music. Give your hearts, but not into each other's keeping. For only the hand of life can contain your hearts. And stand together yet not too near together, for the pillars of the temple stand apart, and the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other's shadow.
True love is a sacred flame that burns eternally and none can dim its special glow or change its destiny. True love speaks in tender tones and hears with gentle ear. True love gives with open heart and true love conquers fear. True love makes no harsh demands. It neither rules nor binds, and true love holds with gentle hands the hearts that it entwines.
|Benediction I||Benediction II||Benediction III|
May your love be based on freedom. For though our hands may touch, it's our hearts that hold.
When you hold love within your heart, you radiate a light which shall brighten all the days of your life and beyond.
Everything we truly love becomes a part of us forever. So, take your time with each other. Let your love's seed grow and mature with the seasons to provide you with warmth, serenity, joy and acceptance throughout all the years of your marriage.
God in Heaven above, please protect the ones we love. We honor all that you created as we pledge our hearts and lives together. We honor Mother Earth--we ask for our marriage to be abundant and to grow stronger with the seasons. We honor fire -- and ask that our union be warm and glowing with love in our hearts. We honor wind -- and ask that we sail though life safely and calm as in our father's arms. We honor water -- to clean and soothe our relationship that it may never thirst for love. With all the forces of the universe you created, we pray for harmony and true happiness as we forever grow young together.
May God bless you with Hope enough to keep sunshine in your love, and Fear enough to keep you holding hands in the dark;
Unity enough to keep your roots entwined, and Separation enough to keep you reaching for each other;
Harmony enough to keep romance in your song, and Discord enough to keep you tuning your love so it becomes sweet music to all who may hear it.
|Breaking of the Glass||The Rose Exchange||The Promises of Marriage|
|There are many reasons why it is customary for a glass to be broken at the conclusion of the wedding ceremony. Symbolically, the breaking of the glass reminds us of the fragile nature of life. The custom has also come to symbolize the shattering of the old and the beginning of the new. Since this is an interfaith ceremony, let us, with this symbol, become especially mindful of the barriers that people erect between one another, and hope that with the breaking of the glass, we will see a breaking down of the barriers between people and help create a world that is more loving, peaceful, and unified. The breaking of the glass represents a turning point in your lives as you pledge your love today and make this new commitment to one another. This is the time when you turn from living your separate lives to creating a new family together with one glass.||
________ and _________, today you have exchanged your gifts of wedding rings, an outward expression of your undying love and a public showing of your commitment to each other. You are also going to receive another gift from each other.
Roses have always been a symbol of love, and a single red rose always says, "I love you." So, it is appropriate that your next gift to each other on your wedding day be a single red rose. Please exchange roses.
In some ways it seems that you have not done anything at all. A moment ago, you held one small rose, and now you are holding another. A marriage ceremony is like this.
In some ways tomorrow is going to seem no different than yesterday. But, in fact, just now, you have both given and received one of the most valuable and precious gifts of life--one I hope you will always remember. You have exchanged the gift of true and abiding love within the devotion of marriage.
_______and ________, I would ask that wherever you make your home in the future, whether it be a large and grand home or a small and graceful one, that you both pick one very special location for roses.
In every marriage there are times when it is difficult to find the right words to say what's in your heart. It might be hard sometimes to say, "I'm sorry," "I forgive you," "I need you," or "I am hurting." If this should happen and you just cannot find these words, leave your spouse a red rose in that special spot.
That rose says the words, "I still love you." The other can accept this rose for the words that cannot be found., and remember that it was LOVE that brought you here today, it is ONLY love which can make it a glorious union, and it is BY love which your marriage shall endure.
Marriage is a promise of companionship, of having someone to share all of life's experiences.
Marriage does not promise that there will not be any rough times, just the assurance that there will always be someone who cares and will help you through to better times.
Marriage does not promise eternal romance, just eternal love and commitment. Marriage cannot prevent disappointments, disillusionment, or grief, but it can offer hope, acceptance, and comfort.
Marriage can't protect you from making individual choices or shelter you from the world, but it will help to reassure you that there is someone by your side who truly cares when the world hurts you and makes you feel vulnerable.
Marriage offers the promise that there will be someone waiting to listen, to console, to inspire.
Marriage is the joining of two people who share the promise that only marriage can make.--to share the sunshine and the shadows, and to experience a richer, more fulfilling life because of it.
|Presentation of Couple||Presentation of Couple II||Your Notes....|
Love is not a wall, it is a bridge. Love does not confine, it sets you free. It leads as a pathway, winding, to places unknown and mysterious. With love to light the way, you can meet any challenge together.
By the power vested in me by the state of Arizona, I now pronounce you man and wife. _________, you may kiss your bride.
And now, to all the family who has come to celebrate this marriage, I would like to present, for the first time anywhere,
MR & MRS ___________________!
________and __________, now that you have shared with each other these words of love and commitment, and we have witnessed the expression of your love as you have given each other these rings, and you have joined your hands and hearts before your family and friends, it is with great joy that I pronounce you husband and wife. ________, it's time to kiss your bride.
Ladies and gentlemen, it is my privilege to introduce to you for the very first time:
MR & MRS____________________!
|These words are credited to many sources, including, but not limited to, "A Wedding Ceremony To Remember" by Marty Younkin, and the Ultimate Wedding & Ceremony Workbook by Rev. Amy Long and quoted resources. Please email to add ones you've found.|
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