Perfectly Planned Ceremony

Word of welcome

Welcome. My name is ____ and I have the privilege of performing this marriage ceremony today. 

On behalf of [Spouse 1] and [Spouse 2] welcome and thank you for being here. They are delighted that you are here today to share in their joy during this wonderful moment in their lives. 

By your presence, you celebrate with them the love they have discovered in each other and you support their decision to commit themselves to one another for the rest of their lives.

Address to the assembly

Today their relationship changes. All of us know it will grow, and become stronger and better.

Indeed this day is a day of hope. A day in which [Spouse 1] and [Spouse 2] demonstrate their commitment, devotion, and mutual respect, as well as their faith and love in one another.

You who are gathered here as witnesses are called to continue your support and encouragement as they unite in marriage.

Address to the couple

We all know marriage is more than two people standing up here repeating vows. There is an art to any creative activity. So too in marriage.

Part of the art of marriage is finding room for the things of the spirit.

So to you two, I say continue in your search for the good and the beautiful in this life.

Part of the art of marriage is being flexible. So in your marriage cultivate flexibility, patience, understanding and a sense of humour.

Part of the art of marriage is to comfort each other and strive to be each other's best friend. Most important, develop the capacity to forgive and heal your differences day by day.

Always remember that your love can prevail. It can be the miracle that invites you to learn, to blossom, to expand your horizons.

This ceremony today is a most serious covenant made before all of us as witnesses.

From your new marriage relationship can come the nurture and strength you two need to face the world. Only from this moment on you will face the world together in a new way. 

Today a new family is born and our world will be the better for its birth. For this we all celebrate.

Reading

Now a reading that expresses the sense of joy and love on this occasion. These two are dedicating it to one another. It is called 'To My Friend':

I love you not only for what you are but for what I am when I am with you.

I love you not only for what you have made of yourself but for what you are making of me.

I love you because you have done more than any creed could have done to make me good, and more than any fate could have done to make me happy.

You have done it without a touch, without a word, without a sign.

You have done it by being yourself.

Perhaps that’s what being a friend means, after all.

Expression of intent and consent

Now just a few questions. First for you [Spouse 1].

[Spouse 1], you have chosen [Spouse 2] to be your husband/wife/partner. Will you love and respect him/her/them? Will you be honest with him/her/them always? Will you stand by him/her/them through whatever may come? (Answer: 'I will')

[Spouse 2], you have chosen [Spouse 1] to be your husband/wife/partner. Will you love and respect him/her/them? Will you be honest with him/her/them always? Will you stand by him/her/them through whatever may come? (Answer: 'I will')

And do you both promise to make the necessary adjustments in your personal lives so that you may continue to live in a harmonious relationship together? (Answer: 'We do')

Affirmation of family and friends

In the spirit of joy and affirmation, I want to ask your families and friends a question:

Do you, the families and friends of [Spouse 1] and [Spouse 2], give them your blessing and support, wishing them a wonderful life together? (All answer: ‘We do’)

Exchange of vows

[Spouse 2] and [Spouse 1], we now come to your vows. May I remind you that saying your vows is one thing but nothing is more challenging than living them day by day. What you promise today must be renewed tomorrow and each day that stretches out before you.

Will you now please turn and face each other and hold hands, looking at each other.

[Spouse 1], please repeat after me:

In the presence of our family and friends, I [Spouse 1] choose you [Spouse 2] to be my husband/wife/partner, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, in joy and in sorrow, to love and to cherish, and to be faithful to you alone. This is my solemn vow.

Now, [Spouse 2], please repeat after me:

In the presence of our family and friends, I [Spouse 2] choose you [Spouse 1] to be my husband/wife/partner, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, in joy and in sorrow, to love and to cherish, and to be faithful to you alone. This is my solemn vow.

Giving and receiving of rings

May I have the rings, please.

[Spouse 1], please repeat after me:

[Spouse 2], I give you this ring, that you may wear, as a symbol of the vows, we have made this day. I pledge you my love and respect, my laughter and my tears. With all that I am, I honour you.

Now, [Spouse 2], please repeat after me:

[Spouse 1], I give you this ring that you may wear as a symbol of the vows we have made this day. I pledge you my love and respect, my laughter and my tears. With all that I am, I honour you.

May those who wear these rings live in love all their days.

Affirmation of the marriage

Now may the love which has brought you together continue to grow and enrich your lives. 

May you meet with courage the problems which arise to challenge you and may your relationship always be one of love and trust. 

May the happiness you share today be with you always and may every word you have pledged here be a living truth in your lives.

Declaration of the marriage

[Spouse 1] and [Spouse 2], we have heard your promise to share your lives in marriage. We recognize and respect the covenant of marriage you have made here this day before each one of us as witnesses.

Therefore, in the honesty and sincerity of what you have said and done here today, it is my honour and delight to declare you henceforth to be husband and wife/married/partners for life.

You may seal your vows with a kiss.

The signing of the register

Introduction of the couple 

It is my personal privilege and a great joy to be the first one to introduce [Spouse 1] and [Spouse 2] for the first time as husband and wife/a married couple.

Please greet them warmly.

 

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