Ceremonies

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Ceremony Two


Ceremony Three


Ceremony Three (Secular)


Ceremony Four


Ceremony Five


Ceremony Six


Ceremony Seven


Ceremony Eight


Ceremony Nine


Ceremony Ten


Ceremony Eleven


Ceremony Twelve


Ceremony Thirteen


Ceremony Fourteen


Ceremony Fifteen


Ceremony SIxteen


Ceremony Nineteen


Ceremony Twenty


Ceremony Twenty-One



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Marriage Service Two

 

The parties standing before the minister, the man at the woman's right hand, and after prayer, or such other exercises as may be had, the minister shall say:

If it be your intention to take each other as husband and wife, you will manifest it by uniting your right hands.

This being done, he shall say to the man: Do you take this woman, whose hand you hold, to be your lawful wedded wife. Do you solemnly promise, before God and these witnesses, that you will love, honor, and cherish her; and that, forsaking all others for her alone, you will faithfully perform to her all the duties which a husband owes to a wife, so long as you both shall live? He answers, I do.

Then to the woman: Do you take this man, whose hand you hold, to be your lawful wedded husband. Do you solemnly promise, before God and these witnesses, that you will love, honor and cherish him; and that, forsaking all others for him alone, you will faithfully perform the sacred vows you have now made? She answers, I do.

Ring Ceremony: What tokens do you present as a symbolic confirmation of your promise to each other?

Response: The rings.

To both: Wedding rings serve as a fitting remembrance of the vows you have just spoken. They are the outward and visible sign of an inward and invisible reality—the love that joins your hearts together in God. Let these rings serve not as locks binding you together, but as keys, unlocking the secrets of your hearts for each other to know, and thus bringing you closer together forever.

Direct the man to place the ring on the bride’s finger, and then say to the man: Please repeat after me. This ring I give you as a token of my love, and as a pledge of my constant fidelity.

Direct the woman to place the ring on the man’s finger, and then say to the woman: Please repeat after me. This ring I give you as a token of my love, and as a pledge of my constant fidelity.

To both: Your mutual affection and fidelity serve as a memorial of this sacred service, and of the holy bonds of marriage, by which you are bound henceforth till death shall separate you. As you have thus solemnly agreed before God and these witnesses, I pronounce you lawfully married husband and wife. May Divine favor crown this union and your future lives, with all temporal and spiritual blessings in Christ Jesus our Savior, and bring you to the life everlasting. Amen.

To the groom: You may kiss your bride.

Presentation of Couple: Ladies and Gentlemen, it is my honor to present to you for the very first time, Mr. and Mrs. _____________ _________________



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Marriage Service Three

 

(Pastor Eastman's Favorite)

 

With the parties standing before the minister, he shall say: Marriage is a joyous occasion. It is connected in our thoughts with the charm of home, and with all that is pleasant and attractive in the tenderest and most sacred relations of life.

When celebrated in Cana of Galilee, it was sanctioned and cheered by the presence of the Lord himself; and is declared by an inspired apostle to be honorable in all.

And now, if you ________ and ________ have at present appeared for the purpose of being joined in legal wedlock, you will please to signify this intention, by uniting your right hands.

The minister shall say to the man: Do you take the woman whom you now hold by the hand, to be your lawful wedded wife? Answer, I do; or assent. Do you promise to love and cherish her, in sickness and in health, for richer or for poorer, for better or for worse, and forsaking all others keep thee only unto her, so long as you both shall live?
Answer, I do; or assent.

Then to the woman: Do you take the man who now stands by your side and who holds you by the hand, to be your lawful and wedded husband? Answer, I do; or assent. Do you promise, to love and cherish him, in sickness and in health, for richer or for poorer, for better or for worse, and forsaking all others, keep thee only unto him, so long as you both shall live? Answer, I do; or assent.

Say to both: Do you mutually promise in the presence of God, and of these witnesses, that you will at all times and in all circumstances, conduct yourselves toward one another as becometh Husband and Wife? Both answer, I do; or assent. That you will love, cherish and adhere to one another until separated by death? Both answer, I do; or assent.

If a ring is used, the minister will say to the Bride:

To the Bride: You will please place this ring on the hand of your [affianced] Groom… and reunite your hands. 

To Both: Having taken these pledges of affection and vows of fidelity, I do therefore, by the authority of the laws of this State, sanctioned by divine authority, pronounce you ________ and ________ lawfully married, Husband and Wife; in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen. What, therefore, God hath joined together, let no one put asunder.

Prayer

To the Groom: _______, you may now kiss your bride.

Presentation of Couple: Ladies and Gentlemen, it is my distinct honor to present to you for the first time, Mr. And Mrs. _______.



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Marriage Service Three (Secular Version)

 

With the parties standing before the minister, he shall say: Marriage is a joyous occasion. It is connected in our thoughts with the charm of home, and with all that is pleasant and attractive in the tenderest and most sacred relations of life.

And now, if you ________ and ________ have at present appeared for the purpose of being joined in legal wedlock, you will please to signify this intention, by uniting your right hands.

The minister shall say to the man: Do you take the woman whom you now hold by the hand, to be your lawful wedded wife? Answer, I do; or assent. Do you promise to love and cherish her, in sickness and in health, for richer or for poorer, for better or for worse, and forsaking all others keep thee only unto her, so long as you both shall live?
Answer, I do; or assent.

Then to the woman: Do you take the man who now stands by your side and who holds you by the hand, to be your lawful and wedded husband? Answer, I do; or assent. Do you promise, to love and cherish him, in sickness and in health, for richer or for poorer, for better or for worse, and forsaking all others, keep thee only unto him, so long as you both shall live? Answer, I do; or assent.

Say to both: Do you mutually promise in the presence of these witnesses, that you will at all times and in all circumstances, conduct yourselves toward one another as becometh Husband and Wife? Both answer, I do; or assent. That you will love, cherish and adhere to one another until separated by death? Both answer, I do; or assent.

If a ring is used, the minister will say to the bridegroom:

Will you please place this ring on the hand of your [affianced] Bride.

To the Bride: Will you please place this ring on the hand of your [affianced] Groom… and reunite your hands.

To Both: Having taken these pledges of affection and vows of fidelity, I do therefore, by the authority of the laws of this State, sanctioned by divine authority, pronounce you ________ and ________ lawfully married, Husband and Wife.

To Groom: _______, you may now kiss your bride.

Presentation of Couple: Ladies and Gentlemen, it is my distinct honor to present to you for the first time, Mr. And Mrs. ____________.



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Marriage Service Four

 

Opening: Greeting to guest and Pastor's homily 

 

Reading: "Blessing of Hands"

These are the hands of your best friend, young and strong and full of love for you, that are holding yours on your wedding day as you promise to love each other today, tomorrow, and forever. These are the hands that will work alongside yours, as together you build your future. These are the hands that will passionately love you and cherish you through the years, and with the slightest touch, will comfort you like no other. These are the hands that will hold you when fear or grief fills your mind. These are the hands that will countless times wipe the tears from your eyes; tears of sorrow, and tears of joy. These are the hands that will tenderly hold your children. These are the hands that will help you to hold your family as one. These are the hands that will give you strength when you need it. And lastly, these are the hands that even when wrinkled and aged, will still be reaching for yours, still giving you the same unspoken tenderness with just a touch. 

[Pastor speaks and Groom repeats]

Repeat after me: I, ________, take you, ________, to be my wife, my partner in life and my one true love. I will cherish our friendship, and love you today, tomorrow, and forever. I will trust and honor you. I will laugh with you and cry with you. I will love you faithfully through the best and the worst, Through the difficult and the easy. What may come I will always be there. As I have given you my hand to hold, so I give you my life to keep. 

[Pastor speaks and Bride repeats]

Repeat after me: I, ________, take you, ________, to be my husband, my partner in life and my one true love. I will cherish our friendship, and love you today, tomorrow, and forever. I will trust and honor you. I will laugh with you and cry with you. I will love you faithfully through the best and the worst, Through the difficult and the easy. What may come I will always be there. As I have given you my hand to hold, so I give you my life to keep. 

 

Rings

[Pastor speaks and Groom repeats]

Repeat after me: (Bride), I give you this ring. Wear it with love and joy. As this ring has no end, neither shall my love for you. I choose you to be my wife this day and every day. 

[Pastor speaks and Bride repeats]

Repeat after me: (Groom), I give you this ring. Wear it with love and joy. As this ring has no end, neither shall my love for you. I choose you to be my wife this day and every day. 

 

Candle Ceremony

Now, we're going to engage in a ceremony of spiritual symbolism. Ancient sages tell us that for each of us, there is a candle, a symbol of our own inner light, but that no one can kindle his or her own candle. Each of us needs someone else to kindle it for us. When two people fall in love, they kindle each other's candles, creating great light and joy and glorious expectations. Now, ________ and ________, I'd like you to remember when it was in your relationship that you first realized you were truly in love and wanted to spend the rest of your lives together. And holding that thought…

[Pastor picks up candle]

(Groom), take this candle, symbol of the inner light in (Bride), light it by the eternal light, with the dedication to rekindle it again and again, whenever necessary.

[Pastor picks up candle]

And (Bride), take this candle, symbol of the inner light in (Groom), light it by the eternal light, with the dedication to rekindle it again and again, whenever necessary.

With these candles, we can see how to achieve a beautiful marriage. In your marriage, you will try to bring these lights, the symbols of yourselves, closer and closer to each other, until they become...

[Join the flames]

ONE. One great torch of light a radiant symbol of love, joy, peace and harmony.

[Continue to hold flames together]

This is the mystery of the union of two becoming one. Yet, it is vitally important to remember that there are always really two

[Divide the flames]

In a marriage, each with his or her own desires, yearnings, dreams and wishes. And these must be respected and responded to with great love, with great compassion and with genuine tenderness. We know that it is the prayer of your beloved, as it is the prayer of each of us here, that you will continuously light these candles of love, so that there will always be light and joy, peace and harmony in your hearts and in your home.

[Candles are placed back on table]

 

Pronouncement

________ and ________, now that you have made promises to each other which will be the foundation of the wonderful marriage you are going to build, I (name of pastor________), under the authority of the laws of the state of ________, sanctioned by Divine authority, pronounce you lawfully married, husband and wife in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. What the two of you, with the help of these, your friends and family who love you, have chosen to put together, let no one "mess with!" 

Would you care, now, to share with us your first **Married** kiss? 

 

Presentation

Allow me to introduce to you ________ and ________ , now legally married!



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Marriage Service Five

 

Pastors Reading: "The Art of Marriage" 

The little things are the big things. It is never being too old to hold hands. It is remembering to say "I love you" at least once a day. It is never going to sleep angry. It is at no time taking the other for granted; the courtship should not end with the honeymoon, It should continue through all the years. It is having a mutual sense of values and common objectives. It is standing together facing the world. It is forming a circle of love that gathers in the whole family. It is doing things for each other, not in the attitude of duty or Sacrifice, but in the spirit of joy. It is speaking words of appreciation and demonstrating gratitude in thoughtful ways. It is not expecting the husband to wear a halo or The wife to have the wings of an angel. It is not looking for perfection in each other. It is cultivating flexibility, patience, understanding and A sense of humor. It is having the capacity to forgive and forget. It is giving each other an atmosphere in which each can grow. It is finding room for things of the spirit. It is a common search for the good and the beautiful. It is establishing a relationship in which the independence is equal, Dependence is mutual, and the obligation is reciprocal. It is not only marrying the right partner, It is being the right partner. 

Pastor: ________ and ________ , are you ready to take your vows?

Groom: I, (Groom), take you, (Bride), to be my wife, my partner in life and my one true love. I will cherish our friendship and love you today, tomorrow, and forever. I will trust and honor you. I will laugh with you and cry with you. I will love you faithfully through the best and the worst, Through the difficult and the easy. What may come I will always be there. As I have given you my hand to hold, so I give you my life to keep,
So help me God. 

Bride: I, (Bride), take you, (Groom), to be my husband, my partner in life and my one true love… 

Man & Woman: Entreat me not to leave you, or to return from following after you. For where you go, I will go and where you stay, I will stay. Your family & friends will become my family & friends. Where you die, I will die and there I will be buried. May God smile upon us and bless us. May the Lord do with me and more if anything but death parts you from me. 

 

Blessing of the Rings

The wedding ring is the outward and visible sign of an inward and spiritual bond which unites two loyal hearts in endless love. It is a seal of the vows ________ and ________ have made to one another.

Bless O God these rings, that ________ and ________, who give them and who wear them, may ever abide in peace. Living together in Unity, Love and Happiness for the rest of their lives. 

Groom: (Bride), I give you this ring as a symbol of our vows, and with all that I am, and all that I have, I honor you. In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, with this ring, I wed thee. 

Bride: (Groom), I give you this ring as a symbol of our vows, and with all that I am, and all that I have, I honor you. In the name of the Father and, of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, with this ring, I wed thee. 

 

Unity Candle Ceremony

________ and ________, the two lighted candles symbolize your separate lives, your separate families and your separate set of friends. I ask that you each take one candle and that together you light the center candle. Lighting the center candle represents that your two lives are now joined to one light, and represents the joining together of your two families and sets of friends to one. 

[Bride and Groom light the candle.] 

 

Declaration of Marriage

In as much as you have each pledged to the other your lifelong Commitment, Love and Devotion, I now pronounce you husband and wife in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Those whom God has joined together let no one put asunder. ________ and ________, you may now seal this bond with a kiss!



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Marriage Service Six

 

(Pastor Steve Means' favorite ceremony)

 

Pastor: Friends and family, we are gathered here in the sight of God, and in the presence of this company, to unite _______ and _______ in holy matrimony. Marriage was ordained by God in the Garden of Eden and confirmed in Cana of Galilee by the presence of the Lord Himself, and is declared by the Apostle Paul to be honorable among all men. It is therefore, not to be entered into unadvisedly or lightly; but reverently, soberly, and in the fear of God. It is fitting, therefore, that we should begin by seeking God’s blessing for this marriage service. 

Let’s pray… Dear Father, we pray that you will bless  _______ and _______ as they begin this new journey together. In all the experiences of life, may they always stay close to You and to each other as they share the joys and blessings as well as the trials and heartaches. Help them to honor and keep the promises they make here today, and remind them daily of Your great love for them so they, in turn, may reach out in love to each other. Give them such love and devotion that each may be to the other a strength in need, a comfort in sorrow, a counselor in difficulty, and a companion in joy. In the power of Christ Jesus we pray, Amen. 

The scriptures give us a very clear description of what love is to be; First Corinthians tells us that “Love is patient and kind; love is not jealous or boastful; it is not arrogant or rude. Love does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrong, but rejoices in the right. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails. So faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest is love.” 

In love, as in life, the little things are the big things. It is never being too old to hold hands. It is remembering to say “I love you” at least once a day. It is never going to sleep angry. It is never taking one another for granted. The courtship should not end with the honeymoon, but should continue throughout the years. It is forming a circle of love that gathers in the whole family. In presenting yourselves here today before God and these witnesses to be joined in marriage, you perform an act of faith. This faith will grow, develop and last, but only if you both decide to make it so. No ritual or service can guarantee a lasting and growing love. 

If you would have the foundation of your marriage be the devotion you have for one another, not just at this moment, but for all the days to come, then treasure the hopes and dreams that you bring here today. Establish that your love will never be blotted out by the common nor obscured by the ordinary in life. Faults will surface where you now find comfort, and admiration can be shattered by the routine of daily life. But dedication, love and joy will grow when you nourish them together. Stand fast in that hope and confidence, having faith in your shared destiny just as strongly as you have faith in yourselves and in one another today. Only with this spirit can you forge a union that will strengthen and endure all the days of your lives. 

And now, if you ________ and ________ , have at present appeared for the purpose of being joined in holy matrimony, will you please signify this intention by joining hands. 

 

Vows

[Groom repeats after the pastor by phrases]

I, ________, with all my heart I take you to be my wife. On this day and for the rest of my life, this is the meaning of my love for you. With the Lord’s help I promise to be patient and kind with you, never jealous, To have a humble heart, to honor and respect you, To place your needs before my own, to be slow to anger, And quick to forgive, to bear all things with you, To believe in you, supporting you in all you do, To hope with you, and to endure with you in faithfulness. I will make you a part of me, and in turn, become a part of you. Until death do us part. 

[Bride repeats after the pastor by phrases]

I, ________, with all my heart take you to be my husband. On this day and for the rest of my life, this is the meaning of my love for you. With the Lord’s help I promise to be patient and kind with you, never jealous, To have a humble heart, to honor and respect you, To place your needs before my own, to be slow to anger, And quick to forgive, to bear all things with you, To believe in you, supporting you in all you do, To hope with you, and to endure with you in faithfulness. I will make you a part of me, and in turn, become a part of you. Until death do us part. 

 

Rings

What tokens do you present as a symbolic confirmation of your promise to each other?

[The rings are given to Pastor to hold.]

Wedding rings serve as a fitting symbol of the vows you have just spoken. They are the outward and visible sign of an inward and invisible reality—the love that joins your hearts together in God.

Let these rings serve not as locks binding you together, but as keys, unlocking the secrets of your hearts for each other to know, and thus bringing you closer together forever. 

[Pastor gives ring to Groom. Groom presents ring to the Bride.]

Groom: (Bride), with this ring, I pledge my love and commitment. May it ever be a symbol, of the unbroken bond of our love.

[Pastor gives ring to Bride. Bride presents ring to Groom.]

Bride: (Groom), with this ring, I pledge my love and commitment. May it ever be a symbol, of the unbroken bond of our love.

 

Pronouncement and Presentation

Then by the authority vested in me as a representative of the state and a minister of the gospel, and because of the vows made in the presence of these witnesses, it is my joy to pronounce you husband and wife. Those whom God has joined together, let no one put asunder. You may now kiss your new bride. Friends and family, I present to you…



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Marriage Service Seven

 

(Especially good for couples of diverse religious backgrounds)

 

Opening Remarks

Pastor: “The Art of Marriage” In love and marriage, the little things are the big things. It is never being too old to hold hands. It is remembering to say "I love you" at least once a day. It is never going to sleep angry. It is at no time taking the other for granted. It is having a mutual sense of values and common objectives. It is standing together facing the world. It is forming a circle of love that gathers in the entire family. It is doing things for each other, not in the attitude of duty or sacrifice but in the spirit of joy. It is speaking words of appreciation and demonstrating gratitude in thoughtful ways. It is not looking for perfection in each other but cultivating patience, understanding… a sense of humor… and the capacity to forgive and forget. It is providing each other an atmosphere in which each can grow. It is finding room for things of the Spirit. It is establishing a relationship in which the independent is equal, dependence is mutual, and the obligation is reciprocal. It is not only marrying the right partner, it is being the right partner. 

 

Water Ceremony

Pastor: I now invite the parents of the bride and groom to come forward. In your hands you hold water of the east and water of the west. The two symbolize your own families, your own friends, and your own traditions and faith. As the water pours from separate containers, flows together and becomes one body of water, we witness the joining of the lives of ________ and ________, and of those who are part of their lives now, and those who have helped shape their lives but can now be here in our memories and in spirit.

At this moment we remember and honor...

[Pastor reads names of dear ones who have passed]

[Ritual pouring of water together]

As the water has flowed, let these two become one. We pray this and claim this to the One God who loves us all.

 

Readings and Songs (Optional)

 

Exchange of Vows

Pastor: ________ and ________ , are you ready to exchange your vows of marriage?

Groom: I, ________, take you, ________, to be my wife; to honor you, respect you, and care for you—through all that is bitter and all that is sweet. I promise to show you patience, to respect your own mind and thoughts. As we step together into the future I promise to never stop loving and amazing you. As I have given you my hand to hold, I give you my life to keep. 

Bride: I, ________, take you, ________, to be my husband; to honor you, respect you, and care for you—through all that is bitter and all that is sweet. I promise to show you patience, to respect your own mind and thoughts. As we step together into the future I promise to never stop loving and amazing you. As I have given you my hand to hold, I give you my life to keep. 

Pastor: ________ and ________, please join hands. These hands holding yours on your wedding day are the hands of your best friend, young and strong and full of love for you as you promise to love each other today, tomorrow, and forever. These are the hands that will work along side yours, as together you build your future. These are the hands that will passionately love you and cherish you through the years and, with the slightest touch, will comfort you like no others. These are the hands that will hold you when fear or grief fills your mind. These are the hands that will countless times wipe the tears from your eyes—tears of sorrow and tears of joy. These are the hands that will tenderly hold your children. These are the hands that will help you to hold your family as one. These are the hands that will give you strength when you need it. And lastly, these are the hands that, even when wrinkled and aged, will still be reaching for yours, still giving you the same unspoken tenderness with just a touch. 

 

Rings

Pastor: The wedding ring is the outward and visible sigh of an inward and spiritual bond. In these two rings is the symbol of unity in which two lives are now joined as one. May these rings be forever reminders of the unbroken circle of your love and of the promises you have made here today. 

 

Pastor Leads Prayer to Bless Rings (Optional) 

 

Exchange of Rings

Man: ________, I give you this ring as a symbol of our vows. You are my beloved, you are my friend, and with all that I am, and all that I have, I honor you. In the name of our God.

Woman:  ________, I give you this ring as a symbol of our vows. You are my be-loved, you are my friend, and with all that I am, and all that I have, I honor you. In the name of our God. 

 

Blended Family Section (Optional)

 

Gifts to Parents/Grandparents (Optional)

 

Pronouncement

Pastor: ________ and ________, now that you have uttered your vows and committed that you will honor your love and build your relationship in marriage, I, ________(pastor’s name), authorized by the state of ________ and sanctioned by Divine Authority, pronounce you legally married, husband and wife. What the two of you have chosen to put together with the help of God, let no one interfere with. Now, would you care to share with us your first marriage kiss?

 

Presentation of Couple

Pastor: Let me introduce to you ________ and ________, now legally married! 

Let us go now and celebrate! 



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Wedding Service Eight

 

(Traditional modified fundamental Christian ceremony)

 

Dearly Beloved: We are gathered together here in the sight of God, and in the presence of these witnesses, to join together this man and this woman in holy matrimony, which is an honorable estate, instituted of God in the time of man’s innocence, signifying unto us the mystical union that exists between Christ and His Church. This holy estate Christ adorned and beautified with His presence and first miracle that He wrought, in Cana of Galilee, and St. Paul commended as being honorable among all men. It is, therefore, not to be entered into unadvisedly, but reverently, discreetly, and in the fear of God. Into this holy estate these persons present now come to be joined.

[Addressing the couple]

________ and ________ I require and charge you both as you stand in the presence of God, to remember that the commitment to marriage is a commitment to permanence. It is the intent of God that your marriage will be for life, and that only death will separate you. If the vows you exchange today be kept without violation, and if you seek always to know and do the will of God, your lives will be blessed with His presence, and your home will abide in peace.

[Addressing the Groom]

________, will you have this woman to be your wedded wife, to live together after God’s ordinance in the holy estate of matrimony? Will you love her, comfort her, honor and keep her in sickness and in health; and forsaking all others, keep yourself only unto her, so long as you both shall live?

[Response: I will.]

(Addressing the Bride)
________, will you have this man to be your wedded husband, to live together after God’s ordinance in the holy estate of matrimony? Will you love, honor, and keep him, in sickness and in health; and, forsaking all others, keep yourself only unto him, so long as you both shall live?

[Response: I will.]

Then the minister shall ask:

Who gives this woman to be married to this man?

[Response by the father, or whoever gives the bride in marriage: I do.]

(The couple face each other. Minister speaks to the groom first.)

(Insert groom’s name), please repeat after me.

I, ________, take you, ________, to be my wedded wife, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better–for worse, for richer–for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death us do part, according to God’s holy ordinance; and thereto I pledge you my faith.

(Insert bride’s name), please repeat after me.

I, ________, take you, ________, to be my wedded husband, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better–for worse, for richer–for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death us do part, according to God’s holy ordinance; and thereto I pledge you my faith.

(The minister calls for the rings and begins with the Groom, instructing him “to repeat after me.”)

[Groom says to Bride]
________, this ring I give you, as a token of my love, and as a pledge of my constant fidelity.

[Bride says to Groom]
________, this ring I give you, as a token of my love, and as a pledge of my constant fidelity.

[Optional: The couple then shall kneel as the minister offers the following, or an extemporaneous prayer.]

O Eternal God, Creator and Preserver of all mankind, Giver of all spiritual grace, the Author of everlasting life, send Your blessing upon these Your servants, this man and this woman, whom we now bless in Your name; that as Isaac and Rebekah lived faithfully together, so these persons may surely perform and keep the vow and covenant made between them this hour and may ever remain in love and peace together, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Then shall the minister say:

Forasmuch as this man and woman have consented together in holy wedlock, and have witnessed the same before God and this company, and have declared the same by joining of hands, I pronounce that they are husband and wife together, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Those whom God has joined together let not man put asunder. Amen.

(Groom), you may kiss your bride.

 

Final Blessing

God, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, bless, preserve, and keep you; the Lord mercifully with His favor look upon you, and fill you with all spiritual benediction and grace. May you so live together in this life that in the world to come you may have life everlasting.

The minister may then conclude with an extemporaneous prayer and/or benediction.

 

Presentation of couple

It is my honor and privilege to introduce to you for the first time, Mr. and Mrs._________.

Then the recessional plays and they lead the way down the aisle.



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Marriage Service Nine

 

There is no greater gift than the love that makes two people one. To behold this love blossoming between two hearts is always a joy, and to behold the vows of lovers as they take each to the other, throughout all the changes of life, is a glorious moment of the soul. It speaks of the great conviction by which people mutually rely upon and believe in one another. In a world where faith often falls short of our expectation, it is a wonderful tribute to two people to see them joining hands and hearts in perfect faith. 

We are gathered to unite this man and this woman in marriage, which is an institution founded in nature, ordained by the state, and made honorable by good men and women in all ages. It is not to be entered into unadvisedly or lightly, but discreetly, advisedly, and with due reverence. This celebration is the outward token of a sacred and inward union of hearts by which neither state nor church can create or annul, as this union is created by loving purpose and kept by abiding will. Into this legacy, ________ and ________ come to be united.

Who is it that brings this woman to this man? (Her mother and I) 

________ and ________, you are now taking into your care and keeping the happiness of one person in all the world whom you love best. You are adding to your life not only the affection of each other, but also the companionship and blessing of a deep trust as well. You are agreeing to share strength, responsibilities and most of all to share love. We cannot join ourselves to one another without giving our word. And this must be an unconditional giving, for in joining one another we join ourselves to the unknown.

 ________, will you take ________ as your wedded wife? Will you love her, comfort her, honor and keep her in sickness and in health, forsaking all others, keep you only to her, so long as you both shall live!

________, will you take ________ as your wedded husband? Will you love him, comfort him, honor and keep him in sickness and in health, forsaking all others, keep you only to him, so long as you both shall live? 

Quotes on Love:

“What greater thing is there for two human souls than to feel that they are joined for life – to strengthen each other in all labor, to rest on each other in all sorrow, to minister to each other in all pain, to be one with each other in silent, unspeakable memories at the moment of the last parting,” - George Elliot 

“We seek the comfort of another. Someone to share and share the life we choose. Someone to help us through the never ending attempt to understand ourselves. And in the end, someone to comfort us along the way.” - Marcus Finch Lupus

“Married love is love woven into a pattern of living. It has in it the elements of understanding and of the passionate kindness of husband and wife toward each other. It is rich in the many-sided joys of life because each is more concerned with giving joy than with grasping it for himself. And joys are most truly experienced when they are most fully shared.” - Leland Foster Wood

Please repeat after me. I ________, take you ________ for my wife from this day forward, to have and to hold as equal partner in life, to whom I give my deepest love and respect for as long as we both shall live. I promise to love, honor and respect you from this moment on. 

I ________, take you ________ for my husband from this day forward, to have and to hold, as equal partner in life, to whom I give my deepest love and respect for as long as we both shall live. I promise to love, honor and respect you from this moment on.

The vows which have been exchanged by ________ and ________ have been offered in our hearing. But, words are fleeting, and the sound of them is soon gone. The wedding ring becomes an enduring symbol of the promises which have been made. 

May I have the rings please. (Groom), Will you take this ring and place it upon the 3rd finger of (Bride)'s left hand, and holding her hand in yours please repeat after me. 

(Bride), with free and unconstrained soul, I give you all that I am and all that I am to become. Take this ring, and with it my promise of faith, patience, and love for the rest of my life. 

Bride: I accept this ring with devotion
and love with all my heart. 

(Bride), Will you take this ring and place it upon the 3rd finger of (Groom)'s left hand, and holding his hand in yours please repeat after me, with free and unconstrained soul, I give you all that I am and all that I am to become. Take this ring, and with it my promise of faith, patience, and love for the rest of my life. 

Groom: I accept this ring with devotion and love with all my heart.

May this couple, just married, draw strength from their agreement. Understanding, even in moments of despair, the virtues found in each other. Solace under fire, encouragement when life becomes a trial, sharing one another's joy and pain. Welcoming life's mysteries through the optimism found in their love. Growing wise instead of old. Sharing today's inspiration, beyond the present, may this union only add to the goodness and joy of life. 

________ and ________, Go into the world and fulfill your lives. Hold fast your ideas. Give to one another new experiences of joy. Challenge one another so that you may grow. May the love you hold for each other—now sealed in marriage—continue to mature, that your life together may he a source of strength and inspiration to the community of your family and the wider circle of the world. I now pronounce you husband and wife. You may kiss the bride.



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Marriage Service Ten

 

(Contemporary, heart-felt ceremony with optional Hindu fire ritual.)

 

Opening Words:
For those of us blessed by a true partnership of love,
we feel safe in the presence of our loved one.
There is no need to hide any part of ourselves
for fear of being judged or rejected.
We can just be together from moment to moment,
believing that those moments
will thread together into eternity.

There is a gentleness to the presence of love
that softens life’s rough edges.
It makes us somehow braver
to go forth into the world
knowing that the shelter of someone’s love
awaits us at the end of the day.

We are most vulnerable when we are in love.
We place our trust in another
to honor us and care for us,
to treasure us and to receive our love.

In love, we trust that the other will provide a safe haven
in which we can experience and share
the fullness of our being with one another.
And in so doing,
we trust that our lives will be far richer
than had we chosen separate journeys through this world.

We trust that our love will fill us full
and make us wiser and more beautiful beings.
We find that our union graces our lives with balance,
and sweetness beyond any we have ever tasted,
and a treasure beyond any measure of value
we have ever known.

 

Charge for the Couple

(Bride) and (Groom), you have made a very serious and important decision in choosing to marry each other today. You are entering into a sacred covenant as life partners. As in tending the flowers in a garden, the quality of your marriage will reflect the effort you put into nurturing this relationship. You have the opportunity to go forward from this day to create a faithful, kind, and tender relationship.

(Groom), do you understand and accept this responsibility, and do you promise to do your very best each day to create a loving, healthy, and happy marriage?
Answer: Yes I do.

(Bride), do you understand and accept this responsibility, and do you promise to do your very best each day to create a loving, healthy, and happy marriage?
Answer: Yes I do.


________ and ________, are you ready to exchange your vows of marriage? Answer: Yes. Then please join hands and face each other.

 

Vows

[Groom to Bride]
(Bride), I love you, and I am choosing to share all of life’s blessings, challenges, joys, and sorrows with you. As your husband, I promise to nurture you, to be kind and patient, forgiving and faithful. I promise to honor our differences and to learn from them. I will encourage you and stand by you in our life together; and I will grow with you in the shelter of our love. I promise you this with my heart and soul. I vow to you before our families and friends, to dedicate myself to our marriage, our friendship, and our love.

[Bride to Groom]
(Groom), I love you, and I am choosing to share all of life’s blessings, challenges, joys, and sorrows with you. As your wife, I promise to nurture you, to be kind and patient, forgiving and faithful. I promise to honor our differences and to learn from them. I will encourage you and stand by you in our life together; and I will grow with you in the shelter of our love. I promise you this with my heart and soul. I vow to you before our families and friends, to dedicate myself to our marriage, our friendship, and our love.

 

The Exchange of Rings:

Wedding rings are the traditional symbols of vows taken in marriage —a circle—without beginning or ending, and with no point of weakness. They are the outward sign of the bond that unites two hearts. The wedding ring is placed on the fourth finger of the left-hand because it was believed that this finger was a direct connection to the heart – the perfect place for a symbol representing eternal love and commitment.

[Groom repeating after Minister]

(Bride), I give you this ring. Wear it with love and joy. As this ring has no end, neither shall my love for you. I choose you to be my wife this day and every day.

[Bride repeating after Minister]

(Groom), I give you this ring. Wear it with love and joy. As this ring has no end, neither shall my love for you. I choose you to be my husband this day and every day.


(Optional) Hindu Ritual of the Seven Vows

The ritual of saptapadi or seven vows symbolizes the entire journey of life through which both bride and groom will travel together. According to Hindu faith, if two people walk just seven steps together then these two people will remain together for rest of their lives.

[The couple walk around a fire or candle(s) seven times as Minister speaks. One circle for each vow.]

The first of the seven vows is taken to earn and offer a living for the household or family of the bride and groom and to avoid all harmful things.

The second step of the ritual is taken to make the mental, physical, and spiritual powers of the bride and groom, and to lead a healthy life.

The third step is made to earn wealth and increase prosperity by moral and proper means.

The fourth step of Saptapadi is taken to obtain happiness, knowledge, and harmony by the ways of love, respect, faith and understanding.

The fifth step of the seven vows is taken to have healthy, moral, and brave children.

The sixth step is made to maintain self-control and enjoy a long life.

Lastly, the seventh step of Saptapadi is taken to be true to each other, and to be loyal to each other.

 

Closing Marriage Address

(Bride) and (Groom),
Demonstrate your love for yourself and each other
through caring and sharing.
Stretch your love large enough
to embrace whatever life brings to you.
Let it fill you,
comfort and protect you.

Let your hearts be truly safe and at home with each other.
Be generous in expressing your love.
Be open to receive love from each other.
Be flexible and forgiving with each other.
Let your relationship be a catalyst
that transforms you
into the expression of your highest selves.

Remember that your relationship
is alive and ever-changing
and that your love is a miracle,
always inviting you to grow, to learn,
to blossom and to expand.
How you regard each other
will determine the destiny of your union.
It is your creation together,
your sacred responsibility.

Be kind to your relationship.
Nourish it with tender loving care,
and, above all else,
keep your love alive.
Treat is as the precious blessing it is.

Do not just be married or in love;
but let your marriage be an active process of loving each other.

The quality of your marriage is up to you.
Both of you as individuals
and together as a couple
will choose what kind of marriage you will create,
promote, and allow
through your thoughts, feelings and actions each day.

In the hardest of times,
always remember to reach for the goodness
inside yourselves and each other.

May you always honor the sanctity of your union
and thus be blessed beyond your wildest dreams.

 

Pronouncement

(Bride) and (Groom), now that you have made promises to each other which will be the foundation of the wonderful marriage you are going to build, I (Officiant's Full Name), under the authority of the laws of the state of Ohio, pronounce you lawfully married, husband and wife. Would you care, now, to share with us your first **Married** kiss?

Allow me to introduce to Mr. & Mrs. _________________ now legally married!



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Marriage Service Eleven

 

(Good Ceremony for an Inter-Faith Wedding)

 

Processional 

 

Opening Remarks

All around the world, marriage is a sign of our Creator’s intention for wholeness in all creation. The joining together of two persons into one unique, intimate and creative unity in marriage is therefore not only a symbol but also a demonstration of the wellbeing and God’s good work in the creation. This day has been designed to reflect the traditions of two cultures and religions. (Bride) and (Groom) see Hinduism [or insert other religion] and Christianity [or insert other religion] as two parts of the same circle, with God at the center. They wish to honor these cultures and religions today.

They are mutually devoted to each of their families—and could not be doing this without their strength and support. You are all integral to this ceremony, and to the lives (Bride) and (Groom) are uniting here today. In their love together (Bride) and (Groom) demonstrate not only their joy in the present; but their commitment to share their future together. 

 

Presentation of Bride

When a father presents his daughter in marriage, he is honoring the covenant into which she is entering and gives his and her mother’s promise of loving support. With that understanding, I ask, "Who presents this Bride to be married to this Groom?"

[Bride's Parents]

“We do.” 

 

Commemoration of Those Departed (Optional)

Lighting of the commemorative candle It is at this time we would remember those who have passed to spirit as well as those who could not travel to be with us today. Although they have been separated from us physically… faith and love will always bind them to family and friends, and continue through the rich legacy that (Groom) and (Bride) begin today. (Pastor to light as he speaks) With these thoughts, I say these words for the Bride and Groom: May the lighting of this candle be a reminder of the memories we have shared, a representation of the everlasting impact you have made upon the lives of those who remember and love you. Today we pause to reflect upon those who have shaped our character, molded our spirits and touched our hearts. 

[Momentary Pause]

 

Greeting

We are gathered here in the presence of God and of this company to join in holy matrimony (Bride) and (Groom) and to bear witness to the transforming power of love. Love is a quality of spirit and an attitude of the emotions, but a marriage is a life’s work, a spiritual art form. Therefore, this is an occasion of both profound joy and great responsibility, and we who partake in it bind ourselves as witnesses to the labor of love that (Bride) and (Groom) are undertaking here. 

The uniting in marriage of two individuals from two separate families and backgrounds to establish a new family is an important and memorable event. For as attached as we are to (Bride) and (Groom) by special bonds of love and affection, the uniting of these two people in heart and body and mind is an occasion of great significance that we can all celebrate. In acknowledgment of this holy purpose and of the power of this occasion, let us pray… 

 

The Invocation

Dear Father, we pray that you will bless (Bride) and (Groom) as they begin this new journey together. In all the experiences of life, may they always stay close to You and to each other as they share the joys and blessings as well as the trials and heartaches. Help them to honor and keep the promises they make here today, and remind them daily of Your great love for them so they, in turn, may reach out in love to each other. Be with them on this joyous occasion of showing their love and making their vows; and be with us, their witnesses, that we may all be changed by what is said and witnessed here today. Amen. 

 

Apache Wedding Prayer

[Read by Minister or Another]

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 more loneliness, For each of you will be companion to the other. Now you are two bodies, But there is only one life before you. And may your days be good and long upon the earth. 

 

Expression of Intent

(Groom), Do you choose (Bride) as your wedded wife, to live together in sacred marriage. Will you be honest with her always? Will you stand by her through whatever may come? Do you agree to make whatever adjustments are necessary so that you can genuinely share your life with her? Do you promise to faithfully cherish and honor her, encourage, comfort and support her, to attend her in sickness and in health, forswearing all others, remaining completely loyal to her, as long as you both shall live? 

(Groom): I do. 

(Bride), Do you choose (Groom) as your wedded husband, to live together in sacred marriage? Will you be honest with him always? Will you stand by him through whatever may come Do you agree to make whatever adjustments are necessary so that you can genuinely share your life with him? Do you promise to faithfully cherish and honor him, encourage, comfort and support him, attend him in sickness and in health, forswearing all others, remaining completely loyal to him, as long as you both shall live? 

(Bride): I do. 

 

Vows

We invite each of you as family and friends to share this happy occasion, to bless (Bride) and (Groom), to add your joy to theirs as they exchange their vows: 

(Insert Groom's Vows Here) 

(Insert Bride's Vows Here) 

 

Exchange of Rings

What tokens do you present as a symbolic confirmation of your promise to each other?

[Response: The rings]

Wedding rings serve as a fitting symbol of the vows you have just spoken. They are the outward and visible sign of an inward and invisible reality—the love that joins your hearts together in God. Let these rings serve not as locks binding you together, but as keys, unlocking the secrets of your hearts for each other to know, and thus bringing you closer together forever.

[Words from a Hindu wedding ceremony]

A circle is the symbol of the sun and the earth and the universe. It is a symbol of holiness and of perfection and of peace. In these rings it is the symbol of unity, in which your lives are now joined in one unbroken circle, in which, wherever you go, you will always return to one another and to your togetherness. 

The rings you give and receive this day are the symbols of the endless love into which you enter as husband and wife. 

[(Groom) puts ring on (Bride)’s hand and repeats after the minister]

With this ring, I thee wed. I love you for who you are, and I commit myself in trust to you and to our relationship. As I give you this ring, I join my life with yours. 

[(Bride) puts ring on (Groom)’s hand and repeats after the minister]

With this ring, I thee wed. I love you for who you are, and I commit myself in trust to you and to our relationship. As I give you this ring, I join my life with yours.

 

Sand Ceremony

(Bride) and (Groom), you have just sealed your relationship by the giving and receiving of rings and this covenant is a relationship pledge between two people who agree that they will commit themselves to one another throughout their lives. You are committing here today to share the rest of your lives with one another. Today, this relationship is symbolized through the pouring of these three individual containers of sand into a fourth one.

One, representing you, (Bride), and all that you were, all that you are, and all that you will ever be. The Second representing you, (Groom), and all that you were, all that you are, and all that you will ever be. And The Third one represents The Spirit or The Soul—the part of ourselves that guides our very existence, and that which will now guide your relationship together as well—call on it consistently and often. As these three containers of sand are poured into the fourth container, the individual containers of sand continue to exist, but a fourth entity is also created; one which did not exist before but one which will forevermore continue to be.

[Minister pours the Spiritual layer]

This layer represents Your Souls, who are and always will be the foundation of you both as individuals. (Bride), please pour some of your sand which will represent you as an individual. (Groom), please pour some of your sand which will represent you as an individual.

[Minister pours more of the Spiritual layer]

This layer represents the Spiritual aspects of who are as a couple, being guided by your Soul purpose together as a team, out picturing your spiritual purpose in your lives together, and in the lives of any children that might one day gather onto you. (Bride) and (Groom), now pour your remaining sand into the container together to represent the joining of your two individual lives into this union of marriage. Just as these grains of sand can never be separated and poured again into the individual containers, so may your marriage be. 

(Bride) and (Groom), it is time to acknowledge the importance of the events of daily life you will encounter in your new life. Ponder now your new state of life, that you may live it well. May every word you speak and every breath you take in each other’s presence, be twice blessed, in truth and joy, and may you walk together in strength each holy day of your lives, recognizing that what you undertake together will bring you continuous joy. Know that the love you share can truly help to change the world. Your souls are united from this moment forward. 

May you grow through the experience of oneness. May your home be a haven of serenity to all. May your life together be a tribute to the beauty of creation. Go now, knowing that God is blessing you on your way. 

Let us Pray: Heavenly Father, we ask Thy blessings upon (Bride) and (Groom) as they blend together in their marital union. Give them beauty, closeness, and the tender passion of deep friendship as they embrace the future. Bless them deeply and give them growth and joy as they walk this life together. Amen 

 

Pronouncement of Marriage

Forasmuch as (Bride) and (Groom) have agreed to progress together in sacred marriage, and have expressed their intentions before God and this assembly by their solemn vows each to the other and by the exchange of rings, I now pronounce that they are husband and wife through the power of The One Eternal God. May those whom God has joined together be generously blessed forever! 

 

The Kiss

(Groom), You may now kiss your Bride! 

 

Presentation

Ladies and Gentlemen, May I present: (Groom) and (Bride) [or, “Mr. and Mrs. _______), now legally married!

 



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Marriage Service Twelve

 

(The Anglican Marriage Service From The Book Of Common Prayer 1662 edition Provided by Rev. T Michael Hornecker)

 

DEARLY beloved, we are gathered together here in the sight of God, and in the face of this company, to join together this Man and this Woman in holy Matrimony; which is an honourable estate, instituted of God himself, signifying unto us the mystical union that is betwixt Christ and his Church: which holy estate Christ adorned and beautified with his presence and first miracle that he wrought in Cana of Galilee, and is commended in Holy Writ to be honourable among all men: and therefore is not by any to be enterprised nor taken in hand unadvisedly, lightly, or wantonly; but reverently, discreetly, advisedly, soberly, and in the fear of God, duly considering the causes for which Matrimony was ordained.

First, it was ordained for the increase of mankind according to the will of God; and that children might be brought up in the fear and nurture of the Lord and to the praise of His Holy name.

Secondly, it was ordained in order that the natural instincts and affections, implanted by God, should be hallowed and directed aright; that those who are called of God to this holy estate, should continue therein in pureness of living.

Thirdly, it was ordained for the mutual society, help, and comfort, that the one ought to have of the other, both in prosperity and adversity.

Into which holy estate these two persons present come now to be joined.

Therefore, if any man can shew just cause, why they may not lawfully be joined together, let him now speak, or else hereafter, forever hold his peace.

I REQUIRE and charge you both, as ye will answer at the dreadful day of judgment when the secrets of all hearts shall be disclosed, that if either of you know any impediment, why ye may not be lawfully joined together in Matrimony, ye do now confess it. For be ye well assured, that so many as be coupled together otherwise than God's Word doth allow are not joined together by God; neither is their Matrimony lawful.

GROOM, Wilt thou have this Woman to thy wedded wife, to live together after God's ordinance in the holy estate of Matrimony? Wilt thou love her, comfort her, honour, and keep her in sickness and in health; and, forsaking all others, keep thee only unto her, so long as ye both shall live?

The Man shall answer, I will.

BRIDE, Wilt thou have this Man to thy wedded husband, to live together after God's law in the holy estate of Matrimony? Wilt thou love him, comfort him, honour, and keep him (alternate ancient ceremony: obey him and serve him, love, honor and keep him) in sickness and in health; and, forsaking all others, keep thee only unto him, so long as ye both shall live?

The Woman shall answer, I will.

Who giveth this Woman to be married to this Man?

I, GROOM take thee BRIDE to my wedded Wife, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death us do part, according to God's holy law; and thereto I give thee my troth (alternate ancient ceremony: plight thee my troth).

I, BRIDE take thee GROOM to my wedded Husband, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish (alternate ancient ceremony: to love, cherish and to obey), till death us do part, according to God's holy law; and thereto I give thee my troth.

BLESS, O Lord, this Ring, that he who gives it and she who shall wear it may remain faithful to each other, and abide in peace, and favour, and live together in love until their lives end. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

WITH this Ring I thee wed, with my body I thee honor, and all my worldly goods with thee I share; (alternate ancient ceremony: with my body I thee worship and with all my worldly goods I thee endow);

In the Name of the Father and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.

(They shall both kneel down: the congregation shall remain standing and the Minister shall say,)

Let us pray. O ETERNAL God, Creator and Preserver of all mankind, Giver of all spiritual grace, the Author of everlasting life; Send thy blessing upon these thy servants, this Man and this Woman, whom we bless in thy Name; that living faithfully together, may surely perform and keep the vow and covenant betwixt them made, whereof this Ring given and received is a token and pledge, and may ever remain in perfect love and peace together, and live according to thy laws; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Those whom God hath joined together let no man put asunder.

FORASMUCH as GROOM and BRIDE have consented together in holy wedlock, and have witnessed the same before God and this company, and thereto have given and pledged their troth, either to other, and have declared the same by giving and receiving a Ring, and by joining hands; I pronounce that they are Man and Wife, In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Amen

(The Minister shall add this Blessing.)

GOD the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Ghost, bless, preserve, and keep you; the Lord mercifully with his favour look upon you, and so fill you with all spiritual benediction and grace; that ye may so live together in this life, that in the world to come ye may have life everlasting. Amen.

[An important point to be made is that  the English Catholic version recited by many brides before 1549 and all of Henry VIII's brides, the bride was required to vow to be "bonny and buxom in bed and at board"]



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Marriage Service Thirteen

 

Processional

 

Presentation of Bride

[Pastor says]
Others would ask, at this time, who gives the bride in marriage, but, as a woman is not property to be bought and sold, given and taken, I ask simply if she comes of her own will and if she has her family's
blessing.

Bride, is it true that you come of your own free will and accord?

[Bride says]
Yes, it is true.

[Pastor says]
With whom do you come and whose blessings accompany you.

[Father says]
She comes with me, her father, and is accompanied by all of her
family's blessings.

[Pastor says]
Please join hands with your betrothed and listen to that which I am
about to say.

 

Greeting

 

Homily

 

Three things they like admire respect about each other (Optional)

[Bride speaks about Groom]

Example: Great sense of humour, He is intuitive, and He is caring about me and others. Between his intuition and his caring, he always “knows” what I need! He is really smart.

[Groom speaks about Bride]

Example: She is compassionate with every one and every thing, she wants the best for everyone, and she is so well educated. Her knowledge dwarfs my knowledge—so I always have something to learn to keep up with her. She never lets me forget how she feels about me.

 

Formal Opening

We have come together here in celebration of the joining together of
Bride and Groom. There are many things to say about marriage. Much wisdom concerning the joining together of two souls, has come our way through all paths of belief, and from many cultures. With each union, more knowledge is gained and more wisdom gathered.

Though we are unable to give all this knowledge to these two, who stand before us, we can hope to leave with them the knowledge of love and its strengths and the anticipation of the wisdom that comes with time.

The law of life is love unto all beings. Without love, life is
nothing, without love, death has no redemption. Love is anterior to
Life, posterior to Death, initial of Creation and the exponent of
Earth. If we learn no more in life, let it be this.

Marriage is a bond to be entered into only after considerable thought and reflection. As with any aspect of life, it has its cycles, its ups and its downs, its trials and its triumphs. With full understanding
of this, (Groom) and (Bride) have come here today to be joined as one in marriage.

(Bride) and (Groom), you are now taking into your care and keeping the happiness of one person in all the world who you love best. You are adding to your life not only the affection of each other, but also the companionship and blessing of a deep trust as well. You are
agreeing to share strength, responsibilities and most of all to share
love. We cannot join ourselves to one another without giving our
word. And this must be an unconditional giving, for in joining one
another we join ourselves to the unknown.

 

Readings

What greater thing is there for two human souls than to feel that they are joined for life - to strengthen each other in all labor, to rest on each other in all sorrow, to minister to each other in silent
unspeakable memories at the moment of the last parting. (George
Elliot)

We seek the comfort of another. Someone to share and share the life we choose. Someone to help us through the never ending attempt to
understand ourselves. An in the end, someone to comfort us along the way. (Marcus Finch Lupus)

Married love is love woven into a pattern of living. It has in it the
elements of understanding and of the passionate kindness of husband and wife toward each other. It is rich in the many-sided joys of life because each is more concerned with giving joy than with grasping it for himself. And joys are most truly experienced when they are most fully shared. (Leland Foster Wood)

 

Vow

[Pastor to Groom]

Please repeat after me:

I, (Groom) (Groom's Last Name), by the life that courses within my blood and the love that resides within my heart, take thee (Bride) (Bride's Last Name) to my hand, my heart, and my spirit, to be my chosen one. To desire thee and be desired by thee, to possess thee, and be possessed by thee, without shame, for none can exist in the purity of my love for thee. I promise to love thee wholly and completely without restraint, in sickness and in health, in plenty and in poverty, in this life and beyond, where we shall meet, remember, and love again. I shall respect thee, thy beliefs, thy people, and thy ways as I respect myself.

[Pastor to Bride]

I (Bride) (Bride's Last Name), by the life that courses within my blood, and the love that resides within my heart take thee, Groom (Groom's Last Name) to my hand, my heart, and my spirit to be my chosen one. To desire and be desired by thee, to possess thee, and be possessed by thee, without shame, for naught can exist in the purity of my love for thee. I promise to love thee wholly and completely without restraint, in sickness and in health, in plenty and in poverty, in life and beyond, where we shall meet, remember, and love again. I shall respect thee, thy beliefs, thy people, and thy ways as I respect myself

 

Reading from Captain Corelli's Mandolin

Love is temporary madness, it erupts like volcanoes and then subsides. And, when it subsides you have to make a decision. You have to work out whether your roots have so entwined together that it is inconceivable that the two of you should ever part.

Because, this is what love is. Love is not breathlessness, it is not
excitement, it is not the promulgation of promises of eternal
passion. That is just being "in 'love" which any fool can do.

Love itself is what is left over when being in love has burned away, and this is an art and a fortunate accident. Your parents have it, they
have roots that grow towards each other underground, and when the
pretty blossom has fallen from your branches, you will find, as your
parents will, that you will be one tree and not two.

 

Handfasting with Blessing of Hands Reading

[Pastor calls up those with ribbons.
They tie ribbons over couple's hands.]

[Pastor to Couple]

These ribbons symbolize so much. It is your life, your love and the eternal connection that the two of you have found with one another.

The ties of this handfasting are not formed by these ribbons or even by the knots connecting them. They are formed instead by your vows, by your pledge, your souls and your two hearts, now bound together as one.

[Pastor speaks while hands are handfasted]

These are the hands of your best friend,

young and strong and full of love for you,

that are holding yours on your wedding day

as you promise to love each other today, tomorrow, and forever.

These are the hands that will work alongside yours,

as together you build your future.

These are the hands that will passionately love you and

cherish you through the years, and with the slightest touch,

will comfort you like no other.

These are the hands that will
hold you when fear or grief fills your mind.

These are the hands that will countless times wipe the tears from

your eyes; tears of sorrow, and tears of joy.

These are the hands that will tenderly hold your children.

These are the hands that will help you to hold your family as one.

These are the hands that will give you strength when you need it.

And lastly, these are the hands that even when wrinkled and aged, will still be reaching for yours, still giving you the same unspoken tenderness with just a touch.

 

Rings

The vows which have been exchanged by (Bride) & (Groom) have been offered in our hearing. But, words are fleeting, and the sound of them is soon gone. The wedding ring becomes an enduring symbol of the promises which have been made.

May I have the rings please

[Groom says]

(Bride),
with free and unconstrained soul, I give you all that I am and all
that I am to become. Take this ring, and with it my promise of faith,
patience, and love for the rest of my life

[Bride says]

I accept this ring with devotion and love with all my heart

[Bride says]

(Groom),
with free and unconstrained soul, I give you that all I am and all
that I am to become. Take this ring, and with it my promise of faith,
patience, and love for the rest of my life.

[Groom says]

I accept this ring with devotion and love with all my heart.

 

Final Blessing

Today, we ask that the infinite light of the divine shine upon this union. In that spirit, I offer a blessing to this ceremony.

Blessed be this marriage with the gifts from the east—new beginnings that come each day with the rising sun, communication of the heart, mind, body and soul.

Blessed be this marriage with the gifts of the south—the light of the
heart, the heat of passion, and the warmth of a loving home.

Blessed be this marriage with the gifts of the west—the rushing excitement of a raging river, the soft and pure cleansing of a rainstorm, and a commitment as deep as the ocean itself.

Blessed be this marriage with the gifts of the north—a solid foundation on which to build your lives, abundance and growth of your home, and the stability to be found by holding one another at the end of the day.

(Bride) and (Groom), these four simple blessings will help you on your journey that begins today. However, they are only tools. They are tools which you must use together to create the light, the strength, the infinite energy now and forever of a love you both so richly deserve

I now pronounce you husband and wife.

You may kiss the bride.

Let me introduce (Bride) & (Groom) (Last Name or Names)



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Marriage Service Fourteen

 

The minister says:
Marriage is a good time, a celebration joining two individuals for the betterment of both. It's forming a team like the Avengers. The Fantastic Four or the Secret Society of Super Villains. When one member is in danger at the hands of the Redu Skull, the Joker, the Family, the Boss or any of life's other bad guys, it's the other's sworn duty to come to the rescue. Now, if you ______ and you ______ are ready to enter into the greatest super union of all time, bigger than Dr. Doom and the tick, more powerful than the Hulk and Wonder Woman, please unite your right hands as a show of might and stability and brace yourself for the ceremony of wedlock.

The minister shall say to the man:
Do you take __________ to be your lawful wedded wife? Answer, I do; or assent.

Do you promise to love and cherish her, in sickness and in health, for richer or for poorer, for better or for worse, even when she yells at the wiener dog, forsaking all others, so long as you both shall live? Answer I do; or assent.

Then to the woman:
Do you take _______ to be your lawful wedded husband? Answer, I do; or assent.

Do you promise to love and cherish him, in sickness and in health, for richer or for poorer, for better or for worse, even through the shrugs and probablys, forsaking all others so long as you both shall live? Answer I do.

You promise in the presence of these innocent bystanders, that you will at all times and in all circumstances, conduct yourselves toward one another as Super Husband and Wonderful Wife? Both answer I do.

That you will love and laugh and cherish one another until the Great Adventure ends? Both answer I do.

If rings are used, the minister will say to the bridge and groom: Please place the rings on the hands of your chosen one and reunite your hands.

Then by the authority vested in me as a representative of the state of _________ and a minister of the gospel, and because of the vows made in the presence of these innocent bystanders, it is my joy to pronounce you super husband and wonderful wife. What God has joined together, let no super villain put asunder. You may now kiss your new bride.



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Marriage Service Fifteen

 

Presentation of the Bride

Pastor: Who gives _______ to be married to _______?

Father: Her family does.

 

Opening Prayer

Pastor: Father, hear our prayers for _____ and ______, who today are united in marriage before your altar. Give them your blessing, and strengthen their love for each other. We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ.

 

Opening Remarks

Pastor: Friends, we have been invited here today to share with _____ and _____ a most important moment in their lives. In the time they have been together, their love and understanding of each other has grown and matured. Now they have decided to live their lives as husband and wife.

______ and ______, nothing is easier than saying words and nothing is harder than living them day after day. What you promise today must be renewed and redecided tomorrow. At the end of this ceremony legally you be man and wife, but you still must decide each day that stretches out before you, that you want to be married.

Real love is something beyond the warmth and glow, the excitement and romance of being deeply in love, It is caring as much about the welfare and happiness of your marriage partner as about your own. But real love is not total absorption in each other; it is looking outward in the same direction – together. Love makes burdens lighter, because you divide them. It makes joys more intense because you share them. It makes you stronger so you can reach out and become involved with life in ways you dared not risk alone.

 

Intentions and Vows

Pastor: _____ and ____, have you come here freely and without reservation to give yourselves to each other in marriage?

Pastor: Since it is your intention to enter into marriage, join your right hands and declare your consent before God.

Pastor (Groom repeats): I, _______ take you, _______, to be my wife. I promise to be true to you in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health. I will love you and honor you all the days of my life.

Pastor (Bride repeats): I, _____ take you, ________, to be my husband. I promise to be true to you in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health. I will love you and honor you all the days of my life

 

Blessings and Exchange of Rings

Pastor: Lord, bless and consecrate ______ and ______ in their love for each other. May these rings be a symbol of true faith in each other, and always remind them of their love. We ask this through Christ our Lord.

Pastor (Groom Repeats): Take this ring as a sign of my love and fidelity. In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

Pastor (Bride Repeats): Take this ring as a sign of my love and fidelity. In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

 

Reading - “Blessing for a Marriage”

May your marriage bring you all the exquisite excitements a marriage should bring, and may life grant you also patience, tolerance, and understanding.

May you always need one another – not so much to fill your emptiness as to help you to know your fullness. A mountain needs a valley to be complete; the valley does not make the mountain less, but more; and the valley is more a valley because it has a mountain towering over it. So let it be with you and you.

May you need one another, but not out of weakness.
May you want one another, but not out of lack.
May you entice one another, but not compel one another.

May you embrace one another, but not out encircle one another.

May you succeed in all important ways with one another, and not fail in the little graces.

May you look for things to praise, often say, “I love you!” and take no notice of small faults.

If you have quarrels that push you apart, may both of you hope to have good sense enough to take the first step back.

May you enter into the mystery which is the awareness of one another's presence – no more physical than spiritual, warm and near when you are side by side, and warm and near when you are in separate rooms or even distant cities.

May you have happiness, and may you find it making one another happy.

May you have love, and may you find it loving one another.

 

Unity Candle Ceremony

Pastor: ______ and ______, the two lighted candles symbolize your separate lives, your separate families and your separate sets of friends. I ask that you each take one candle and that together you light the center candle. The individual candles represent your individual lives before today. Lighting the center candle represents that your two lives are now joined to one light, and represents the joining together of your two families and sets of friends to one.

[Light candles and give roses while music plays]

 

Blessing

Pastor: May God, the almighty Father, give you his joy and bless you in your children.

Response: Amen

Pastor: May the only Son of God have mercy on you and help you in good times and in bad.

Response: Amen

Pastor: May the Holy Spirit of God always fill your hearts with his love.

Response: Amen

Pastor: And may almighty God Bless you all, the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

Response: Amen

 

Pronouncement

Pastor: Forasmuch as _______ and ________ have consented together in hold wedlock, and have witnessed the same before God and this company, I declare that _______ and _______ are now husband and wife, in the name of the Father,  and the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen. Whom therefore God hath joined together, let no man put asunder.

Pastor: ______, you may now kiss your bride.

 

Introduction
Pastor: I am now honored to present to you _____________________.



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Ceremony Sixteen

 

(Submitted by Reverend Ria Roth)

 

Greeting and Introduction

Welcome family and friends.

Love is the reason we are here. In marriage we not only say: 'I love you today', but also, 'I promise to love you for all of our tomorrows.'

(Groom) and (Bride) in the days and years ahead of you, there will be stormy times and good times, times of conflict and times of joy. I ask you to remember this advice:

Never go to bed angry.

Let your love be stronger than your anger.

Learn the wisdom of compromise, for it is better to bend than to break.

Believe the best of your beloved, rather than the worst.

Confide in your partner, and ask for help when you need it.

Remember that true friendship is the basis of any lasting relationship.

Give your spouse the same courtesies and kindnesses you bestow on friends.

Say 'I love you' every day.

 

Vows

(Groom) and (Bride), I remind you that marriage is a precious gift, a lifelong commitment, and a challenge to love one another more completely each and every day.

Please join hands and look into each other's eyes.

(Groom), with this understanding, do you take (Bride) to be your wedded wife, to live together in marriage? Do you promise to love her, comfort her, honor and keep her for better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, in sickness and in health, forsaking all others, and to be faithful only to her, so long as you both shall live?

Groom: I do.

(Bride), with this understanding, do you take (Groom) to be your wedded husband, to live together in marriage? Do you promise to love him, comfort him, honor and keep him for better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, in sickness and in health, forsaking all others, and to be faithful only to him, so long as you both shall live?

(Bride): I do.

 

Ring Vows

May I have the rings please?

The ring, an unbroken never-ending circle, is a symbol of committed, unending love.

(Groom), as you place this ring on (Bride)'s finger, repeat these words after me:

This ring, a gift to you, / symbolizes my desire / that you be my wife / from this day forward. / As this ring has no end, / neither shall my love for you.

(Bride), as you place this ring on (Groom)'s finger, repeat these words after me:

This ring, a gift to you, / symbolizes my desire / that you be my husband / from this day forward. / As this ring has no end, / neither shall my love for you.

 

Pronouncement

(Groom) and (Bride), by the authority vested in me as a representative of the state of Ohio and a minister of the gospel, and because of the vows made in the presence of these witnesses, it is my joy to pronounce you husband and wife. Those whom God has joined together, let no one put asunder.

You may now kiss your new bride.

 

Introduction

Friends and family, I present to you…Mr and Mrs ___________________!!



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Marriage Service Nineteen

 

Processional

[Couple stands before minister]

 

Greeting

 

Honor/Memorialize the departed (optional)
Pastor talks of those not present, but who shaped the lives of the bride and groom and thus live on in their hearts. They may then light a candle to represent their spirits present here.

 

Prayer for Protection (optional)
[guests can read it aloud from program, led by pastor, or pastor can lead in call-and-response]

The Light of God surrounds us,
The Love of God enfolds us,
The Power of God protects us,
The Presence of God watches over us.
Wherever we are, God is, and all is well
And we are Grateful.
Amen

 

Pastor's Homily

 

Reading

Marriage
by Leland Foster from How Love Grows in Marriage

Married love is love woven into a pattern of living. It has in it the elements of understanding and of the passionate kindness of husband and wife toward each other. It is rich in the many-sided joys of life because each is more concerned with giving joy than with grasping it for himself. And joys are most truly experienced when they are most fully shared.

 

The Expression of Intent

(Bride) and (Groom) now that you have heard about the magic and mysteries of marriage, the way it will continually surprise you, the strength and wisdom it will everlastingly ask of you, do you choose still and happily and in our midst to make the promises of marriage?

[Spoken Together]

"We do"

 

Vows

[Groom's Vows]

Thank you for taking the time to get to know me. I promise to love you as my wife, to share our lives and our dreams, to keep my heart open to you as much as I can, to always let you know that I love you,
and to always kiss you goodnight. I love you (Bride).

It is a great honor to be marrying you today. You have brought fun and laughter, Warmth and serenity into my life. I love that you are always honest, kind, and patient.

I promise to be thankful every day for the wonderful person that you are. I promise to be the best person that I can be. I promise to be your best friend and companion In all that life brings to us.

I will love you always.

[Bride's Vows]

Thank you for taking the time to get to know me. I promise to love you as my husband, to share our lives and our dreams, to keep my heart open to you as much as I can, to always let you know that I love you, and to always kiss you goodnight. I love you (Groom).

It is a great honor to be marrying you today. You have brought fun and laughter, Warmth and serenity into my life. I love that you are always honest, kind, and patient.

I promise to be thankful every day for the wonderful person that you are. I promise to be the best person that I can be. I promise to be your best friend and companion In all that life brings to us.

I will love you always.

(note: the groom and bride need not speak identical vows)

 

Blessing of the Rings

(Bride) and (Groom), rings are made precious by our wearing them. They carry our meaning; they say who we are, where we have been, and where we are going. They become us; they reflect us; they are a symbol of our truest essence.

Your wedding rings are most special because they say that,even in your uniqueness, you have chosen to be bonded, to allow the presence of another human being to enhance who you are. Your rings carry the potent double message: "We are individuals and yet we belong; we are not alone."

As you wear them through time, they will reflect not only who you are but also the union you are making, the fact that through the rest of your lives each of you will be imprinted by the other, yet as yourself remain.

 

Blessing Prayer with Guests, Over Rings and Couple (Optional)

 

Guests Pray "Our Father" Together (Optional)

 

Exchanging the Rings

[Groom to Bride]
I love you (Bride). Wear this ring as a reminder that I will love you every single day of our lives.

[Bride to Groom]
I love you (Groom). Wear this ring as a reminder that I will love you every single day of our lives.

 

Benediction

Treat yourselves and each other with respect, and remind yourselves often of what brought you together. Give the highest priority to the tenderness, gentleness, and kindness that your connection deserves. When frustration, difficulties and fear assail your relationship, as they threaten all relationships at one time or another, remember to focus on what is right between you, not only the part which seems wrong. In this way, you can ride out the storms when clouds hide the face of the sun in your lives—remembering that even if you lose sight of it for a moment, the sun is still there. And if each of you takes responsibility for the quality of your life together, it will be marked by abundance and delight.

The Apache Prayer feels appropriate at this moment:

Now you will feel no rain, for each of you will be shelter for the other. Now you will feel no cold, for each of you will be warmth to the other. Now there will be no loneliness, for
each of you will be companion to the other. Now you are two persons, but there is only one life before you. May beauty surround you both in the journey ahead and through all the years. May happiness be your companion and your days together he good and long upon the earth.

 

Pronouncement of Marriage
Having taken these pledges of affection and vows of fidelity, I do
therefore, by the authority of the laws of this State, sanctioned by
divine authority, pronounce you lawfully married, husband and wife.

What you have chosen to create together with the help of these who care about you, let no one mess with!

[Minister then invites the first marriage kiss]

 

Introduction
Let me introduce to you for the first time: (Bride) and (Groom) (Last Name or Names)



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Marriage Service Twenty

 

Greeting

Welcome family and friends. We are gathered together to witness the marriage of (Bride) and (Groom). The uniting of two individuals from two separate families and backgrounds is an important and memorable event. We celebrate with them the love they have discovered in each other and we sup-port their decision to commit themselves to each other for the rest of their lives. Marriage is a commitment to take another person as a Friend, Companion, and Lover. Marriage is an honorable estate not to be entered into lightly but thoughtfully and reverently.

I invite you to join me in prayer.

 

Prayer

Heavenly Father, we ask your blessing upon (Bride) and (Groom) as they come to pledge their hearts and lives to one another. Strengthen them so that they may forever be true and loving to each other. Temper their hearts with understanding and forgiveness. May their home be a place of love and kindness, where no one is a stranger. Protect them and keep them always in your care. Amen.

 

Presentation of the Bride

Minister: Who comes today to give this woman to be married to this man? Son: My sister and I do.

Reading: In a letter to the people of Corinth, Saint Paul describes how we should love one another. If I speak in the tongues of men and angels but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom the mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give all my possessions to the poor and surrender by body to the flames, but have not love, I am 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 record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil, but rejoices with the truth.It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, and always perseveres. Love never fails. There will always be faith, hope, and love; But the greatest of these is love.

 

Declaration of Consent

Minister: (Groom) and (Bride), the union of husband and wife is intended for your mutual joy, for the help and comfort given one another in prosperity and adversity. These are solemn vows and I charge you both, as you stand before your family and friends, that having duly considered the covenant you are about to make, you do now declare your pledge of faith to each other. (Groom), do you come here today in the presence of these witnesses to declare your love for (Bride) and choose her as the one with whom you wish to spend your life? Do you give yourself to her and accept the gift of self which she gives to you? Do you pledge to love her, comfort her, honor and keep her, come what may; and, forsaking all others, be faithful to her so long as you both shall live?

Groom: I do.

(Bride), do you come here today in the presence of these witnesses to declare your love for (Groom) and choose him as the one with whom you wish to spend your life? Do you give yourself to him and accept the gift of self which he gives to you? Do you pledge to love him, comfort him, honor and keep him, come what may; and, forsaking all others, be faithful to him so long as you both shall live?

Bride: I do.

The Vows: (Groom), look into (Bride)'s eyes and repeat this vow after me: I, (Groom), take you, (Bride), To be my wedded wife; To love and cherish, From this day forward; In times of joy and of sorrow; In times of plenty or of want; In sickness and in health; As long as we both shall live.

(Bride), look into (Groom)'s eyes and repeat this vow after me: I, (Bride), take you, (Groom), to be my wedded husband; To love and cherish, from this day forward; In times of joy and of sorrow; In times of plenty or of want; In sickness and in health; As long as we both shall live.

 

Exchange of Rings

Wedding rings are the traditional symbols of vows taken in marriage—a circle without beginning or ending, and with no point of weakness. They are the outward sign of the bond that unites two hearts. The wedding ring is placed on the fourth finger of the left-hand because it was believed that this finger was a direct connection to the heart—the perfect place for a symbol representing eternal love and commitment.

(Groom), take this ring and as you place it on (Bride)'s hand, repeat after me: In token and pledge of our love; With this ring, I thee wed.

(Bride), take this ring and as you place it on (Groom)'s hand, repeat after me: In token and pledge of our love; With this ring I thee wed.

A Prayer and Blessing: Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed by Thy Name. We thank you today for (Bride) and (Groom), for the love that they share and for the commitment that they have made before you and before us to one another. I pray your blessing upon this marriage. May (Bride) and (Groom)'s love for one another continue to deepen and grow day by day throughout the years ahead and may they always find in one another all the love, all the comfort, all the joy, all of the many good and wondrous things which you had in mind when you said in your word that it is not good for man to live alone, but that he should cleave to his wife and the two should become one flesh. May they truly be one, not only according to the laws of the state of ______, but also to the law of Heaven. We pray these things. Amen.

 

Pronouncement

(Groom) and (Bride), you came here today of your free will and in our presence, have declared your love and commitment to each other. You have given and received a ring as a symbol of your promises.

Therefore, by the power vested in me by the laws of the state of ______, I take great pride and pleasure in pronouncing you husband and wife.

 

Kiss

(Groom), you may kiss your bride.

 

Introduction

Ladies and gentlemen, I now present to you Mr. and Mrs. ______________.



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Marriage Service Twenty-One

 

(This is Rev. Frieda Hughes' favorite ceremony.)

 

Processional 


Presentation of Bride

Who offers their blessing for the union of (Bride) and (Groom)? [pause] Thank You. 

 

Pastor's Homily 


Opening Prayer

      Loving God, We come today to witness the union of this beloved couple, (Bride) and (Groom), in Holy Matrimony. We know that their love for each other has already been divinely blessed. We joyfully come to add our personal blessings and support, knowing that the love they share will grow and mature with each day of their lives together. And for this and for all blessings we are truly grateful. Amen. 

      Today (Bride) and (Groom) welcome you, the families and friends who share this day with them.  

And we acknowledge the cherished memories of those family members who are with us in spirit for this joyous occasion.

[If couple wishes, names can be mentioned here.] 

      The ideals, the understanding, and the mutual respect which (Bride) and (Groom) bring to their marriage have its roots in the love, friendship and guidance they have received from each of you here.

      So this is much more than a social or a civil occasion – it is a spiritual ceremony in the deepest sense – it is a pledging and a celebration of the world of oneness that has grown up between these two beloved people.

      It is a sacred and a personal union which churches may solemnize or states may make legal, but which only their shared love can create, and their mutual loyalty sustain.

      Our presence here is a statement of our commitment, encouragement and support of the marriage they seek to create.  

(Bride) and (Groom), having chosen the way of inter-dependence, you now move on to deepen your commitment to each other. And all of our love and good wishes are with you in the fullness of this moment.   

 

Readings

Let us listen now to these familiar words from 1st Corinthians 13: [New Revised Standard Version] 

      “If I speak in the tongues of mortals and of angels, but do not have love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give away all my possessions, and if I hand over my body so that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing. 

      Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 

      Love never ends. But as for prophecies, they will come to an end; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will come to an end. For we know only in part, and we prophesy only in part; but when the complete comes, the partial will come to an end. When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child; when I became an adult, I put an end to childish ways.  

      For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then we will see face to face. Now I know only in part; then I will know fully, even as I have been fully known. And now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; and the greatest of these is love.”

Intro to Statement of Intent

      It is indeed wonderful that two best friends have come together before their families and friends to declare their love and friendship and to sanctify it with marriage.

      Marriage is the union of two divinities. It is the union of two souls in a strong love for the abolishment of separateness. It is the higher unity which fuses the separate unities within the two spirits. It is the golden ring in a chain whose beginning is a glance, and whose ending is eternity.

[Spoken to Groom by Bride]

“I, (Bride), take you, (Groom),
to be my husband.
I promise to be true to you
in good times and in bad,
in sickness and in health.
I will love and honor you
all the days of my life.”

[Spoken to Bride by Groom]

“I, (Groom), take you, (Bride),
to be my wife.
I promise to be true to you
in good times and in bad,
in sickness and in health.
I will love and honor you
all the days of my life.”

 

Vows

[Minister to Couple]

(Bride) and (Groom), Are you ready to confirm your love in the responsibility of marriage?

[Bride and Groom Together]

Yes

[Minister to Groom]

Do you, (Groom), take (Bride) to be your beloved wife, to love, to honor, to cherish, to respect and comfort, in sorrow or joy, in hardship or in ease, to have and to hold from this day forth?

[Groom]

I do.

[Minister to Bride]

Do you, (Bride), take (Groom) to be your beloved husband, to love, to honor, to cherish, to respect and comfort, in sorrow or joy, in hardship or in ease, to have and to hold from this day forth?

[Bride]

I do.

 

Reading on Marriage

[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 the 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.”

 

Ring Ceremony

Minister: The ring is a circle and is the symbol of the Universe—the all—infinity. It is also the symbol of completeness, peace, unbroken harmony and endless friendship. These two rings are the symbol of the unity in which your two lives have been joined in one unbroken circle.

Groom: (Bride), I give you this ring as a symbol of my vow, and with all that I am, and all that I have, I honor you. 

Bride: (Groom), I give you this ring as a symbol of my vow, and with all that I am, and all that I have, I honor you.

Minister: Your rings always represent the unbroken circle of Love given and received in freedom. Let each person assembled here offer in his or her own way a silent prayer that the spirit of this gathering engulf and bless the union of (Bride) and (Groom).

 

Unity Sand/Blended Sand Ceremony

(Bride) and (Groom), you have just sealed your relationship pledge between you, agreeing that you will commit yourselves to one another throughout your lives. You are committing here today to share the rest of your lives with one another. This relationship is symbolized through the pouring of these three individual containers of sand into a fourth one. One, representing you, (Bride), and all that you were, all that you are, and all that you will ever be. One representing you, (Groom), and all that you were and all that you are, and all that you will ever be.

The third one represents the Christ, all that He is and will forever be. As these three containers of sand are poured into the fourth container, the individual containers of sand continue to exist, but a fourth entity is also created; one which did not exist before but one which will forevermore continue to be.

Just as the individual grains of sand can never again be separated and poured again into the individual containers, so your marriage will be.

[Minister pours the Christ layer.]

This layer represents the Christ who is and always will be the foundation of you both as individuals.

Minister: (Bride), would you pour some of your sand, representing you as an individual.

(Groom), would you pour some of your sand, representing you as an individual.

[Minister pours more of Christ layer.] This layer represents the Christ as the foundation of your marriage.

(Bride) and (Groom), please pour your remaining sand into the container together to represent the joining of your two individual lives into this one union of marriage.

 

Declaration

In as much as (Bride) and (Groom) have grown in knowledge, respect, and love of one another; because they have agreed in their desire to travel forward in life together seeking an ever richer, deepening relationship and because they pledged themselves to meet all of life’s experiences together, we their families and friends, rejoice!

May all that is noble, true, enriching, creative and beautiful be with you both, always.

IN THE PRESENCE of this company as witness, you have spoken the words and performed the rites which unite your lives.

By the power vested in me by the State of [Ohio], I therefore, declare you, (Bride) and (Groom), husband and wife, married in accordance with the laws of the State of [Ohio].

As kisses are messengers of love, please take a moment to KISS now, and let soul meet soul on your lover’s lips.

[You may now kiss the Bride]  

[Minister wait's for end of embrace]

Ladies and gentlemen may I present the happy couple: (Bride) and (Groom), now married!



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