Ceremony script outline that recognizes all faiths (and folks attending via webcam!)


We are shooketh by this sunlit forest elopement in Cougal Cascades
Photo by Van Middleton Photography from this elopement

When Bec from Sane Weddings agreed to share some of her unique wedding ceremony scripts with us, we knew we'd hit the jackpot. For those of you trying to assemble your own weddings (or for those of you "friend officiants" who are officiating for someone you know and trying to figure out how to write a wedding ceremony), this ceremony script outline is full of great ideas you can use to build your own.

To keep the ceremony script outline gender neutral, we're just using "Name & Name" instead of words like bride or groom. Of course in your ceremony, you can use whatever titles you want — whether that be the couple's names, titles like bride, groom, husband, wife, or more general terms like spouse or partners.

Welcome

Officant: Welcome Everyone. May I ask that ya'll please remain standing.

Community and Family are the truths that all peoples of this heavenly body that we call earth hold closest to their souls. It is in the very fabric of our nature, it is the melody to the harmony of the universe and the balance between light and dark. It is the passion for which we seek to find and lose ourselves in our endless pursuit of knowledge, wisdom and understanding.

Name and Name, you have invited us to be with you here today as witnesses to your affirmation of the happiness you have found together, and to the pledge of your covenant, made powerful in public.

A marriage is above all else an intimate relationship between two persons. But is also has a wider effect in the lives of relatives and friends, and in the community at large. Do you gathered here pledge your support to Name and Name in the commitment they celebrate today?
If so, please respond, `We do.'

Guest Response: We do!

Thank you. Please be seated.

We are so pleased to see you all here today for this amazing (and long time coming) blessing of these two souls. They told me how thoughtfully their wedding integrates their values with themes of friendship, trust and support and struggle. In the spirit of joining these two amazing people as they start their journey of their new lives together I am supposed to regale you with some funny anecdotes about them, or a meet/cute about how they came to be… and we will get to that!

But first, I would like to honor all of our family before us.

Honoring those unable to attend

We would like to recognize all faiths this day by honoring the supreme force that goes by many names, faith which is much like a mountain in that there is more than one way up.

As I pour water on this plant, it is to symbolize our cycle of life from seed to sprout in our desire to reach out to the sun and the stars, to our final phase withering away and nurturing the next generation after us. Those who have come and gone, those who are among us in spirit, and those who just simply could not be here today. At this time I will call upon all of our family and community from past, present, future and those lurking in cyberspace to be recognized.

I will say a few names and then we ask that you, our family and community, say the names of yours aloud as we pour this water and offer our true blessings from our mind, soul, and body. Because how can we know where we are going if we don't know where we come from?

Names to be Honored as I pour and say A-shay: [speak the names of extended family members to be honored, including those who have passed away.]

Sharing stories about the couple

[Insert story about partner 1, sharing their journey through life and to this partnership.]

 

[Insert story about partner 2, sharing their journey through life, and to this partnership.]

 

We all have been blessed to be involved with these two since they met have and witnessed their tremendous growth and happiness together. Their love has bloomed from a strong friendship which is the solid foundation needed on which love and loyalty stand. They have stood steadfast, unwilling to compromise their core principles and values. Their commitment to each other and their communities in the search of truth, love, respect and righteousness is testament of not only their strength to continue through their struggles but to endure the struggle of unity and community as well.

Marriage by its sheer definition is the ultimate giving of each one's self to make a much greater whole. The whole and over stood parts of you that we would say define us as human can be now joined together in a much larger and much more deeply involved commitment of mind body and soul that enhances both of your identities of self, you don't lose any part of your self but you add so much more.

I know how your relationship has evolved in strength and commitment. Your wedding marks neither a beginning nor an end in your relationship, but one step in a continuing process of change and growth. Growth is essential in marriage, as it is an essential part of life. Your relationship keeps unfolding into new dimensions, and as you keep in step as you go forward together, your marriage becomes a source of new strength and new insight.

Inevitably there will be mistakes; inevitably there will be times of tensions and conflict. But as these are openly acknowledged and faced, they can be turned from problems into opportunities, and you will find new meanings and richness in your shared life together.

Ring warming

For the next few minutes, Name and Name invite all of you to pass the rings between one another (if you haven't already done so), pausing to say a prayer, a blessing, a best wish for the future, or simply warm them with your love, before passing them along.

Vows & Ring Exchange

The vows you are making to each other today have no hidden meaning nor power within themselves. They simply express in words your continuing intention and commitment to each other.

In a world where there is no justice: just us pressures pushing people apart often seem stronger than those drawing people together, your commitment to each other will need to be re-expressed in many different ways in the coming days, months, and years. The expression in today's vows is simply a visible milestone in your journey together.

Partner 1, Do you arrive here today freely, willing to enter into marriage with your beloved? If so, please respond, "I do".

Response: I do.

Partner 2, Do you arrive here today freely, willing to enter into marriage with your beloved? If so, please respond, "I do".

Response: I do.

Now, take hands. And all of you who love each other, please take each others' hands as well. To reach out to someone and be acknowledged and loved is a human need. Taking the hand of one who loves you is a powerful symbol of that unspoken bond.

The wedding ring is a symbol as is the act of exchanging it. Symbols are given power by people. Alone, a symbol is meaningless, but with enough people, the simple act of exchanging rings and accepting one another's love can truly change the world.

It's often said at weddings that the wedding band is a perfect circle with no beginning and no end, representing the happy couples love; but these rings do have a beginning. They begin as rock, dug up from the earth, as gold is liquified in a furnace. Hot metal is poured into a mold, cooled and finally painstakingly polished. Something beautiful is made out of raw elements. Love too, changes shape over time and becomes more beautiful as a couple performs the work of that relationship. Reaching out to each other, forging bonds in hard times and working to stay curious about one another. You've begun this work together, may you continue in it.

So Partner 1, with the love and support of your family and friends embedded in this ring, repeat after me:
Partner 2, I give you this ring
as a symbol of the strength we will forge together though out our lives
as it encircles your finger
may it always remind you that you are surrounded by my enduring love

And Partner 1, with the love and support of your family and friends embedded in this ring, repeat after me:
Partner 2, I give you this ring
as a symbol of the strength we will forge together though out our lives
as it encircles your finger
may it always remind you that you are surrounded by my enduring love.

It is in that spirit that today Name and Name ask you as their community and family to please rejoice in the words of "We the Community approve this union."

Please say it aloud together with us: "We the community approve this union"!

Pronouncement

Name and Name, you have sought and accepted each other joyously. May all that life brings to you strengthen the bond you have declared today. May your loved ones, those present and those unable to be present and those joining us from cyberspace continue to rejoice in the warmth of the love that has united you. May you be comfort and joy, counsel and strength to each other. And may the home you will build shed its peace on you and all who seek its shelter with them. By the perceived power of the State of [Your State], I am honored to pronounce you husband and wife.

Name, you may now kiss your spouse.

May I now present to you: [married couple names, such as Mr and Ms John and Jane Doe]!

[Recessional plays]

Huge thanks again to Bec from Sane Weddings for sharing this wedding ceremony outline with us!

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