Christian Wedding Ceremony

Wedding of Kathleen and Kerry
September 12, 2004

Celebrant: Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today in the presence of God, to witness and celebrate the marriage of Kathleen and Kerry. Marriage is an honorable estate, instituted in antiquity and revered since time immemorial as the noblest and tenderest of human relationships. It is therefore not to be entered into lightly, but with faith and forethought.

Today, we have gathered here surrounded by happy memories and loving spirit, to be joyful, in celebration of the relationship of Kathleen and Kerry. By their commitment to marry each other, they are opening to life, to themselves, to family and friends, and to the future.

A wedding ceremony is an outward form. To be true, it must be a symbol of something inner and real. To last, the marriage of these two must be a consecration of each to the other, and of both to the wider community of which they are a part.

Kathleen and Kerry, have you come here in this place of home and family to affirm your commitment to each other?

Bride and Groom: We have.

The minute I heard my first love story I started looking for you, not knowing how blind that was. Lovers don’t finally meet somewhere. They’re in each other all along.

Celebrant: Courtesy and consideration even in anger and adversity are the seeds of compassion. Love is the fruit of compassion. Trust, love and respect are the sustaining virtues of marriage. They enable us to discover and learn from the ever-unfolding lessons of marriage, and help us to realize that everywhere we turn we meet our selves. May your journey be blessed with wisdom.

Please repeat after me:
We nourish each other and ourselves in living….
– by, in every way we can, allowing our deepest Self to appear.
– by taking full responsibility for our own life, in all its infinite dimensions.
– by affirming our trust in the honesty and wisdom of our own body, which with our love and reverence always shows us the true way.
– by being committed to embrace all parts of us, including our deepest fears and shadows, without shame, that they may become a source of light.
– by being ever willing to keep our heart open, even in the midst of great pain.

An Untitled Reading by Roy Croft
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 who
You have made of yourself
But for what you are making of me.

I love you,
For the part of me
That you bring out;
I love you,
For putting your hand
Into my heaped up heart
And passing over
All the foolish, weak things
That you can’t help
Dimly seeing there,
And for drawing out
Into the light
All the beautiful belongings
That no one else had looked
Quite far enough to find.

Celebrant: Marriage is a birth, as is each triumph that comes with taking risks and opening up to each other, each birth serving to renew these vows ever being born and born again.

The marriage couple would like to convey their love and gratitude to Josh and Jourdain for being in their lives. They are so loved by their Mother and new step dad and are welcomed into a new life together of love, new beginnings and exciting adventures. The constant love that you all have for one another will bless this union and your family from this day forward.

Now Kathleen and Kerry will take their marriage vows.

Bride: I, Kathleen, take you, Kerry, to be my husband, in equal love, as a mirror for my true Self, as a partner on my path, to honor and cherish, in sorrow and in joy, for all that I am and all that I shall ever be. I promise to make every effort to live in awareness and share our love with all upon this earth.

Groom: I, Kerry, take you, Kathleen, to be my wife, in equal love, as a mirror for my true Self, as a partner on my path, to honor and cherish, in sorrow and in joy, for all that I am and all that I shall ever be. I promise to make every effort to live in awareness and share our love with all upon this earth.

These, my love, are my promises to you:
That I will love you freely,
As the sky loves the bird,
As the sunset loves the early evening.
That I will love you grandly,
With my tender fine emotions,
With my loving words and all my actions.
That I will love you purely,
With my honor, with my knowing,
With all the best intentions of my being.
That I will love you joyfully,
With my body, with my laughter,
With my foolishness and playing.
That I will love you truly,
With my finest kindness and my deepest care,
That I will love you always,
Now, from this day forward,
Seamless, endless and forever.

Exchange of Rings
Celebrant: May I have the rings please? Rings are an ancient symbol, blessed and simple. Round like the sun, like the eye, like arms that embrace. Circles, for love that is given comes back round again and again. Therefore, may these symbols remind you that your love, like the sun, illumines; that your love, like the eyes, must see clearly; and that your love, like arms that embrace, is a grace upon this world.

Please repeat after me:

Groom: Kathleen, I give this ring as a symbol of my love.

Bride: Kerry, I give this ring as a symbol of my love.

Celebrant: Kathleen and Kerry have declared their love and purpose before this gathering, and have made their pledge each to the other symbolized by the holding of hands and the giving and receiving of rings. I now pronounce that they are husband and wife. May they continue to share in their marriage the love and awareness they have cultivated since they fell in love.

You may kiss the bride.

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Please feel free to use any part of this ceremony as part of your own. Vikki Anderson is available to perform interfaith ceremonies such as weddings, baptisms, welcoming ceremonies as well as naming and handfasting ceremonies.  See http://www.VikkiAnderson.net under Interfaith Minister for more information about ceremonies and weddings.  973-492-3110.  Email:  Starscape50@optonline.net.

Christian Wedding Ceremony #2

Celebrant: Dearly beloved, we gathered here today in the presence of God, to witness and celebrate the marriage of NAME and NAME. Marriage is an honorable estate, instituted in antiquity and revered since time immemorial as the noblest and tenderest of human relationships. It is therefore not to be entered into lightly, but with faith and forethought.

Today, we have gathered here surrounded by happy memories and loving spirit, to be joyful, in celebration of the relationship of NAME and NAME. By their commitment to marry each other, they are opening to life, to themselves, to family and friends, and to the future.

A wedding ceremony is an outward form. To be true, it must be a symbol of something inner and real. To last, the marriage of these two must be a consecration of each to the other, and of both to the wider community of which they are a part.

NAME and NAME, have you come here in this place of home and family to affirm your commitment to each other?

Bride and Groom: We have.

A Reading by NAME

The minute I heard my first love story
I started looking for you, not knowing
how blind that was.

Lovers don’t finally meet somewhere.
They’re in each other all along.

Celebrant: Courtesy and consideration even in anger and adversity are the seeds of compassion. Love is the fruit of compassion. Trust, love and respect are the sustaining virtues of marriage. They enable us to discover and learn from the ever-unfolding lessons of marriage, and help us to realize that everywhere we turn we meet our selves. May your journey be blessed with wisdom.

Please repeat after me: We nourish each other and ourselves in living….

– by, in every way we can, allowing our deepest Self to appear.

– by taking full responsibility for our own life, in all its infinite dimensions.

– by affirming our trust in the honesty and wisdom of our own body, which with our love and reverence always shows us the true way.

– by being committed to embrace all parts of us, including our deepest fears and shadows, without shame, that they may become a source of light.

– by being ever willing to keep our heart open, even in the midst of great pain.

Now NAME will sing Ava Maria:

Every choice is always the wrong choice,
Every vote cast is always cast away –
How can truth hover between alternatives?

Then love me more than dearly, love me wholly,
Love me with no weighing of circumstance,
As I am pledged in honor to love you:

With no weakness, with no speculation
On what might happen should you and I prove less
Than bringers-to-be of our own certainty.
Neither was born by hazard: each foreknew
The extreme possession we are grown into.

Robert Graves

Celebrant: Marriage is a birth, as is each triumph that comes with taking risks and opening up to each other, each birth serving to renew these vows ever being born and born again.

Now NAME and NAME will take their marriage vows. Let us bear witness.

Bride: I, NAME, take you, NAME, to be my husband, in equal love, as a mirror for my true Self, as a partner on my path, to honor and cherish, in sorrow and in joy, for all that I am and all that I shall ever be. I promise to make every effort to live in awareness and share our love with all upon this earth.

Groom: I, NAME, take you, NAME, to be my wife, in equal love, as a mirror for my true Self, as a partner on my path, to honor and cherish, in sorrow and in joy, for all that I am and all that I shall ever be. I promise to make every effort to live in awareness and share our love with all upon this earth.

Celebrant: Do all of you gathered here today pledge your support and encouragement for the commitment NAME and NAME have made to one another?

Witnesses: We do.

A Reading by NAME
After a while, you learn the subtle difference
between holding a hand and sharing a life
and you learn that love doesn’t mean possession
and company doesn’t mean security
and loneliness is universal
And you learn that kisses aren’t contracts
and presents aren’t promises
and you begin to accept defeats
with your head up and your eyes open

And you learn to build your hope on today
as the future has a way of falling apart in mid-flight
because tomorrow?s ground can be too uncertain for plans
yet each step taken in a new direction creates a path
toward the promise of a brighter dawn
And you learn that even sunshine burns
if you get too much
so you plant your own garden
and nourish your own soul
instead of waiting for someone to bring you flowers.

And you learn that love, true love
always has joys and sorrows
seems ever present, yet is never quite the same
becoming more than love and less than love
so difficult to define
And you learn that through it all
you really can endure
that you really are strong
that you do have value
and you learn and grow.

Exchange of Rings.

Celebrant: May I have the rings please? Rings are an ancient symbol, blessed and simple. Round like the sun, like the eye, like arms that embrace. Circles, for love that is given comes back round again and again. Therefore, may these symbols remind you that your love, like the sun, illumines; that your love, like the eyes, must see clearly; and that your love, like arms that embrace, is a grace upon this world.

Groom: NAME, I give this ring as a symbol of my love.

Bride: NAME, I give this ring as a symbol of my love.

Celebrant: NAME and NAME have declared their love and purpose before this gathering, and have made their pledge each to the other symbolized by the holding of hands and the giving and receiving of rings.

You may kiss the bride.

Please let us welcome NAME and NAME LAST NAME into our community as husband and wife. (Applause) Let all honor them and the threshold of their house. May they continue to share in their marriage the love and awareness they have cultivated since they fell in love.

A Reading by NAME

I believe that God brings
certain people into our lives for a reason.

Sometimes, it’s to help us
see something new and wonderful.

Sometimes, it’s to encourage us
and strengthen our purpose.

And sometimes, it’s just to remind us
that we are never truly alone
and that it is important to share our smiles,
our dreams and even our tears.

Whatever reason He had in bringing us together,
I’m glad that He did.

You have been a real source of understanding
and happiness in my life
and you matter very much to me
More than any words could really say.

Celebrant: May the blessings of this day be with you for the rest of your lives. The ceremony has ended, go in peace and love.

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Please feel free to use any part of this ceremony as part of your own. Vikki Anderson is available to perform interfaith ceremonies such as weddings, baptisms, welcoming ceremonies as well as naming and handfasting ceremonies.  See http://www.VikkiAnderson.net under Interfaith Minister for more information about ceremonies and weddings.  973-492-3110.  Email:  Starscape50@optonline.net.

Zen Wedding Ceremony #11

Woodcliff Manor

January 23, 2010

3:30 PM

  • Have DJ play calming or wedding music while people are finding their seats.
  • Groom’s mother is escorted and seated to the right, front row.
  • Bride’s mother is escorted and seated to the left, front row.  She is the last one to be seated before the bride appears.

Processional:

  • Bridesmaids’ Entrance.
  • Flower girl throws rose petals on the runner.
  • Bride enters and walks to the altar to Canon in D.

Celebrant:

Who gives this woman to this man?

Your Sons:

We do. (Sons kiss their mom and Bride  joins hands with Groom and the couple faces each other).  Bride gives bouquet to Matron of Honor to hold.  Flower girl goes to her seat in the front row.

Three bells. Offering of incense and bows.  All bow.  The celebrant lights a large white candle which symbolizes the Source/Universe/Spirit.  Bells ring three more times.

A few moments of silence.

Candle lighting ceremony.  The bride and groom, each holding a white candle approach the Source candle and bow.  First the Bride, then the Groom, light their candles from the source candle and put them in the other two holders on the altar. This symbolizes the illumination of their hearts from the source of light.

Celebrant:

We have come together for the marriage of Bride’s name and Groom’s name.  May they continue to deepen their life and love for one another.

Marriage begins with the giving of words. We cannot join ourselves to one another without giving our word.  And this must be an unconditional giving, for in joining ourselves to another, we join ourselves to the unknown.

Let us all extend our joy to you on this happy occasion as you are about to take a new step forward into your lives.  This day is made possible not only because of your love for each other, but through the grace of your parents, grandparents and generations of ancestors.  It is our hope that your fulfillment and joy in each other and in yourselves will grow with every passing year.

First Reading by Rumi will be by Lisa , Bride’s best friend and Matron of Honor:

The minute I heard my first love story

I started looking for you, not knowing how blind that was.

Lovers don’t finally meet somewhere.

They’re in each other all along.

Celebrant:

Courtesy and consideration even in anger and adversity are the seeds of compassion.  Love is the fruit of compassion. Trust, love and respect are the sustaining virtues of marriage.  They enable us to learn from each situation, to grow and realize that everywhere we turn we meet ourselves.

Celebrant:

The Celebrant takes a small bowl of water and, with a leaf, flicks a few drops of wisdom water on both the bride and groom.

We nourish ourselves and each other in living by the five precepts:

  • In every way we can, we allow our deepest Self to appear.
  • We take full responsibility for our own life, in all its infinite dimensions.
  • We trust in the honesty and wisdom of our body, which with our love and reverence always shows us the true way.
  • We are committed to embracing all parts of ourselves, including our deepest fears and shadows, so they can be transformed into light.
  • We affirm our willingness to keep our hearts open, even in the midst of great pain.

The Second Reading authored by Pablo Neruda will be given by Laurence, Groom’s best friend and best man:

Two happy lovers make one, single bread,

One single drop of moonlight in the grass,

When they walk, they leave two shadows that merge,

And they leave one single sun blazing in their bed.


Celebrant:

Now Bride’s name and Groom’s name will exchange their wedding vows.

Celebrant to the best man:  Laurence, may I have the rings please?

Ring Blessing from Celebrant:

May these rings always bind you to one another and keep the love between the two of you for the rest of your days and sign of the cross.

Groom to Bride:

From this day on, I choose you, my beloved ___________, to be my wife.

I promise to love you with an open heart,

and to laugh with you with abandon.

To be at your side, and sleep in your arms;

to be joy to your heart, food for your soul, and wine to your spirit;

to encourage the best in you always,

and, for you, to be the most that I can be.

I promise to laugh with you in good times, to stand alongside you in bad;

to console you when you are downhearted;

to wipe your tears with gentle fingers;

to comfort you with my body;

to mirror you with my soul;

to be your loving companion beyond the walls of life and beyond the bounds of time.

Celebrant:

Please place the ring on Bride’s finger.

(Groom puts ring on Bride’s finger)

Bride’s Vows to Groom:

From this day on, I choose you, my beloved ______________________, to be my husband.

I promise to love you with an open heart,

and to laugh with you with abandon.

To be at your side, and sleep in your arms;

to be joy to your heart, food for your soul, and wine to your spirit;

to encourage the best in you always,

and, for you, to be the most that I can be.

I promise to laugh with you in good times, to stand alongside you in bad;

to console you when you are downhearted;

to wipe your tears with gentle fingers;

to comfort you with my body;

to mirror you with my soul;

to be your loving companion beyond the walls of life and beyond the bounds of time.

Celebrant:

Please place the ring on Groom’s finger.

(Bride puts the ring on Groom’s finger).

The Third Reading entitled “Apache Song” will be given by Larz, the Bride’s sister:

Now you will feel no rain,

For each of you will be a shelter to the other.

Now you will feel no cold,

For each of you will be warmth to the other.

Now there is no loneliness for you,

for now there is no more loneliness.

Now you are two bodies,

but there is only one life before you.

Go now to your dwelling place

And enter into your days together.

And may your days be good

And long on earth.


Celebrant:

________________  and _______________ celebrate their love and proclaim their union. Their rings of precious metal represent the subtle and wonderful essence they find by losing themselves in each other, and the subtle and wonderful essence they find individually, through their mutual love, respect, support and joy. May they cultivate a long life together, not only in years, but in all the infinite dimensions of each moment they share.

Live long in good health and joy.

You may kiss the bride.  (Bridal couple kisses and turns to face everyone).

Celebrant:

Please welcome for the first time into our community, Mr. and Mrs. _________________________________.

Three bells.

Recessional Music.

Flower girl follows the processional to the back of the hall to the Receiving Line.

Celebrant:

You may give your congratulations and best wishes to the bridal couple at the back of the room and then please proceed to the cocktail hour to the door directly to my left.

See http://www.VikkiAnderson.net under Interfaith Minister for more information about ceremonies and weddings.  973-492-3110.

Welcoming Ceremony

WELCOMING CEREMONY

MARCH 23, 2002

Celebrant: Rev. Vikki Anderson

Before we begin, let us take a few deep breaths, leaving stress and negativity behind as we fill ourselves up with positive energy, love, happiness and joy. Let us settle into our surroundings and be present to the beauty of this moment, this occasion and of this place. Whenever you are worried or stressed in every day matters, may you always recall this beautiful day, this joyous ceremony and the commitment of love that you share with your family and friends. May these thoughts always bring you to a peaceful place in your mind’s eye and give you the strength and wisdom you need to handle any challenge that may arise before you.

I will now light a candle and ask God and Goddess, the Divine couple, to grace us with light and love. Help us open our consciousness so that we may receive your blessing. Blessed be.

Lynn and Marc: Blessed be.

Celebrant: I light the second candle to invite our ancestors to be with us this day, and know that both those we remember, and those who passed before our time have not been forgotten. Please join us in our joy and celebrate with us. Blessed be.

Lynn and Marc: Blessed be.

Celebrant: I light the last candle and ask our spirit guides and guardian angels to join us today. You have gently guided and protected us since our births. We thank you and ask for your continued guidance and love, especially for Gavin who has been recently sent into this world to be a loving part of our lives. Blessed be.

Lynn and Marc: Blessed be.

Celebrant: Welcome all! Lynn and Marc, you have arranged this gathering of family and friends today to affirm your love and commitment, not only to one another, but also to your newly born son, Gavin. You have chosen your home as the place for this gathering as a foundation for Gavin and your family’s future well being. This will always be a symbol of the beginning of your life together as a family. This is where your family will continue to grow into a future of endless possibilities for all of you and those you love.

It is a wonderful thing to look ahead and envision what your life will be like with your new son, Gavin. This blessing has come to you from simply loving one another. Imagine the future with not only your love to guide you, but also the love of another human being that you have lovingly and affectionately brought into this world.

Things will change, yet remain remarkable the same. Moments that were taken for granted in the past will now be more meaningful than ever before. You will rejoice in little things like hearing Gavin’s first word or seeing him take his first step. You will now include Gavin in all of your dreams and goals and will think of his well being before your own. Gavin will be your top priority in life, as it should be, as your parents did for you. He, in turn, will bring so much joy and excitement into your lives that together you will create a continuous circle of love, happiness and abundance in your lives. You are now a family unit that has a common tie and purpose for the rest of your lives.

Now, as you stand at the very beginning of Parenthood, your love for each other grows beyond what you knew to be possible. It is with great hope that you can look towards the future and yet again see all possibilities that lie before you as a family of love and light.

We come to the part of the ceremony where Lynn and Marc will say a few words to their son to express their hopes and dreams for his future. Why not tell Gavin what is in your hearts.

A few special readings have been chosen by Lynn and Marc to honor Gavin. They will be read by…. (We can actually put readings anywhere you wish). Usually grandparents or Uncles, Aunts, etc., would be a nice choice or very close family friends – if you feel this is appropriate.

Celebrant: Blessed are the man and the woman who have grown beyond themselves and have seen through their separations. They delight in the way things are and keep their hearts open, day and night. They are like trees planted near flowing rivers, which bear fruit when they are ready. Gavin is the fruit of their love and commitment to one another.

May the blessings of the God and Goddess follow your family all the days of your lives. Let them keep watch over you and your son and gently guide you onto your true paths of spirituality and enlightenment. They, who are the great Mother and Father of the universe and of all humanity, want you to know from now until all eternity, you will never again be lonely or alone.

Lynn and Marc have chosen each other from the many men and women on this earth, have declared their love for one other to this community and have shared their love selflessly to bring another precious life into a new millennium of hope, love and peace. In mutual self-consecration and in ever deepening love for each other and your family, may you establish a home filled with the spirit of faith, truth, goodness and eternal love for each other, your children and your families and for all sentient beings on this earth and beyond. May Gavin be a source of love, inspiration, commitment and much happiness to you both.

In all your lives, may you be reborn in the same time, and at the same place, so that you may meet and know and remember and be a complete family once again in the eternal future.

In the name of the Divine couple, God and Goddess, I now bless Gavin into our human family and the son of Lynn and Marc. We thank all the Spirits and Universal Energies that have joined us here today. We are grateful for your witness. Hail and Farewell.

This ceremony has ended; go in peace and everlasting love.

Candles are snuffed out.

Vikki Anderson is available to perform interfaith ceremonies such as weddings, baptisms, welcoming ceremonies as well as naming and handfasting ceremonies. See http://www.VikkiAnderson.net under Interfaith Minister for more information about ceremonies and weddings.  973-492-3110.

Esoteric/Crystal Wedding Ceremony

Crystal Announcement

In many esoteric and metaphysical beliefs the energy and power of crystals is an important part of a healthy lifestyle where we call upon the spirit of each crystal to give us their particular gifts. Some crystals impart love, happiness, inner strength, inner peace, decision and optimism, while others impart meditation skills, aid in health issues and repel negativity.

Nadia and William have asked that crystals be part of their ceremony. They ask that you take and hold one crystal in your left hand throughout the ceremony and think of all the good intentions and love that you wish for them. These will be passed out before the ceremony begins and you are asked to deposit them in the baskets in the back of the chapel on your way out. In this way, William and Nadia will take the crystals with all your love and good wishes, and have them as part of the positive energy and strength that you have wished for them as part of their new lives together.

Celebrant:

Love is a miraculous gift, and a wedding is a celebration of that magic, and that is what we are here to do today. We all live in the hope to love and be loved, and any sign of the blossoming of love is a true inspiration.

We are gathered together to be overjoyed for and with Nadia and William who are so wonderfully suited to one another. It is a pure delight for the rest of us to see how happy two people can be. That they have found each other and know in their souls how perfectly mated they are, and that they are choosing on this day of most special days to become for all time, the accurate and beautiful reflection of each other’s essence is a blessing.

Therefore, we give thanks for the pure happiness of Nadia and William. Their enthusiasm is electric, their belief in the destiny of their love is inspiring, and their great expectations encourage us beyond measure. Marriage is a very special place, we ask that the vision they have of one another always be spellbinding and radiant, just as the power that first brought them together. We pray that as they move into marriage, that they always hold one another in the light of all light, the love of all love…

Today is also a celebration for the rest of us, for it is also a pleasure to participate in their wedding. It lifts our spirits to be in the presence of their love, to bask in the sweet energies of two people who obviously adore one another, who want to play together, laugh together, live together and be together for all the days of their lives.

William and Nadia remember that a relationship is a progression; your love will have seasons like Nature itself. There is an old Chinese proverb that says: “The Journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step…” and now your journey has begun.

Your wedding today is an exquisite and beautifully choreographed first step. With it you are passing through a portal that will lead to many places, including ones you cannot possibly ever imagine. Wherever it takes you, there will be surprises, for this is the mark of a truly loving relationship – which it will take you where you had not expected to go. Above all, remember that love is what matters. Love will prevail. It is the love you feel for one another that will be the answer to all of your difficulties.

And so today we are here to celebrate, to honor, to laugh, to dance, and to be glad because the inevitable has finally come true. Love is alive and well in this land. William and Nadia are here to prove it and we are here to celebrate with them.

Congratulations, William and Nadia, the real fun has just begun!

The couples’ dear friend, Jane Pinto, will give the first reading:

…And each said to the other,
“I promise to share with you in times of joy
as in times of trouble, to talk and to listen,
to honor and to appreciate you, to provide for and support you in trust and in love. I promise
to share my hopes and thoughts and dreams with you,
to work with you to build our lives together. I treasure
the wonderful, unique person you are, and I will always
try to be sensitive to your needs. May we grow,
our lives forever intertwined, our love bringing us
always closer. Together, let us create a home that
expresses our individuality and our love for one another.
May it be a home filled with peace, with happiness, and with love.”
Anonymous

The Consecration

Enfolded in joy, inhabited by hope, bathed in the infinite spectrum of light that is love, may you always be infused with it and beautifully illumined by it.

May every desire you have for your love be fulfilled, and may you be given the vision to clearly behold one another, the listening with which to perceive one another most genuinely, and the endless generosity of spirit to nourish one another’s soul and genuinely keep the promises you make today.

The Expression of Intent

William and Nadia, 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 promise of marriage to one another?

Couple: We do.

Nadia’s brother________________ will give the second reading.

Here all seeking is over,
The lost has been found,
A mate has been found
To share the chills of winter –
Now Love asks
That you be united.
Here is a place to rest,
A place to sleep,
A place in heaven.
Now two are becoming one,
The black night is scattered,
The eastern sky grows bright.
At last the great day has come!
Hawaiian Song

The Blessing of the Rings

Rings are an ancient symbol, blessed and simple. Round like the sun, like the eye, and likes arms that embrace. C Like circles, which have no beginning or end. For love that is given comes back round again and again. Therefore, may these symbols remind you that your love, like the sun, illumines; that your love, like the eye, must see clearly; and that your love like arms that embrace, is a grace upon the world.

The Marriage Vows

Nadia, repeat after me. William, I will love you, hold you, and honor you….in good times and in bad…enjoy you, console you, delight you…give thanks for you always….and cherish you dearly until the end of our days.

William, repeat after me: Nadia, I will love you, hold you, and honor you…in good times and in bad…enjoy you, console you, delight you…give thanks for you always…and cherish you dearly until the end of our days.

Exchanging of Rings:

Nadia, repeat after me. William, as a symbol of how happy you make me…and how much I adore you…I give you this ring, so you and the whole world will know how much I love you.

William, repeat after me. Nadia, as a symbol of how happy you make me…and how much I adore you…I give you this ring so you and the whole world will know how much I love you.

Vow of Support from Guests

Now that you have heard William and Nadia recite their vows, do you – their family and friends – promise from this day forward to encourage and love the, to give your guidance, and to support them in being steadfast in the promises that they have made?

Guests: We do.

Pronouncement of Marriage

Now, because you have chosen one another, honored each other with the precious gift of your rings, and pledged to love each other for all eternity, it gives me great joy to pronounce that you are husband and wife. You may kiss the bride.

The Benediction

God Bless You, William and Nadia. May the heavenly angels guide and protect you through all the life of your love; may you forever live in happiness with one another. May your hearts stay full of love, may your love continually grow stronger with each passing year and forever be happy in each other’s arms and find inner peace, strength and contentment.

The wedding ceremony has ended. Go in peace and love.

(Please remember to leave your crystals in the back of the chapel hall. Thank you).

Vikki Anderson is available to perform interfaith ceremonies such as weddings, baptisms, welcoming ceremonies as well as naming and handfasting ceremonies.  See http://www.VikkiAnderson.net under Interfaith Minister for more information about ceremonies and weddings.  973-492-3110.

Wedding Timetable for Brides

SIX TO TWELVE MONTHS BEFORE THE WEDDING:

Decide on your budget – many weddings are outrageously priced, but with a little planning and shortcuts, you may be able to put the extra money down on a house or a longer honeymoon than on frivolities.
Decide if you would like a weekday, evening or weekend wedding:
What time do you visualize for your wedding?
Where would you like to have your wedding?
Set a date
Select your bridal party – (nowadays many couples Have only a Maid of Honor and Best Man)
Select a color scheme
Select and order bridal gown and headpiece
Select and purchase shoes
Select and order attendants – gowns
Research Honeymoon plans
Set up your bridal registry
Look at and choose personal stationery & invitations
Start collecting names for your guest list
Select a DJ or musicians
Visit a local florists for prices and arrangements you like for your bouquet and table arrangements
It would also be less expensive to go to a local craft store and purchase silk flowers in your colors and have them make up the bouquet for free. This will be a keepsake of a lifetime. The girls – bouquets could also be silk, but make sure your parents get fresh flower corsages and the gentlemen get a live carnation or rose as a boutonnière.
Visit a few caterers to see the appropriate venue for your budget and taste.
Talk to and visit photographers in your area. Ask those you trust who have had a favorable experience with their photographer for phone numbers and names.
Announce your engagement in local papers. Send a black and white photo to the paper for the Engagement Section where your notice and photo are printed for free.
Inquire about the obligations you have to your church or temple to see if you must attend any pre-marital workshops.
Talk with clergy about the type of service you would like.
Select a minister for an unorthodox wedding, i.e., beach, lake, park, back yard, restaurant or historic site.
Select and order wedding rings.

THREE MONTHS BEFORE THE WEDDING
Confirm dress delivery
Confirm date and time with caterer
Select and order invitations
Complete guest list (make available to your bridal party for bridal shower)
Check over reception arrangements
Confirm delivery of dress and make appointment for gown fittings
Will you order souvenirs for your guests. Many are now having little frames that hold each place card so you can put the bridal couple’s picture in it when it arrives.
Honeymoon reservations
Confirm time and date with the florist of your choice
Confirm time and date with photographer (leave deposit, if appropriate)
Confirm time and date of musician/DJ
Discuss the types of music you want played at your wedding.
No hip-hop, rap, heavy metal, loud, or obnoxious music. Do you want music from the Forties, Fifties, Rock N Roll, Jitterbug, and any line dances for the unaccompanied guests. Be specific about songs you would like at your wedding. It is your wedding and your wishes come first. Will you allow guests to make requests of the band/musician/DJ? Give the musician instructions as to which type of music you would allow and which kind you will not allow.
How will the centerpieces be distributed at the end of the party? Closest birth date to your wedding? A piece of masking tape under the seat saying, “You’ve won!” Will there be a penny under one of the cups and saucers. Did you want to pre-assign who gets the centerpieces?
Confirm time and date with church, Justice of the Peace or Minister
Discuss and order transportation to and from the wedding If you have out of town guests, inquire about a block of hotel rooms near the church/temple or reception area. Don’t be afraid to try Orbitz.com for a reasonable price. If you are reserving more than 5 rooms, many hotels will give you a “group rate” for the rooms.
Order groomsmen attire
Schedule wedding party’s dress fittings
Make sure everyone gets a smart looking yet comfortable pair of shoes. They do not have to match each bridesmaid, but you may want them the same color as the dress.

TWO MONTHS BEFORE THE WEDDING
Order cake (if not provided by caterer). To save money, many couples order a small cake for the “cutting of the cake” and have a separate sheet cake in the kitchen for the guests to enjoy with coffee. Sheet cakes are much less expensive than Bridal Cakes.
Mail invitations to your guest list.
Inquire as to marriage license procedures for your town.
Finalize Honeymoon arrangements.
Decide if you want to purchase disposable cameras for each table. It is a lovely way of getting candid shots, however, make sure that that adults only use the cameras. Too often children get a hold of them and you have many rolls of ceilings, feet, doors or people with half bodies or heads. Not a good use of money if you make double prints to share with family. Just have a note saying, “For Adults Use Only” on the cameras.

ONE MONTH BEFORE THE WEDDING
Reserve hotel rooms for guests
Plan rehearsal and rehearsal dinner
Purchase gifts for your bridal party
Send out thank you notes as gifts are received so you’ll be ahead of the game.
Purchase a guest book and decide on its placement.
Schedule final fittings of dresses and matching accessories
Make beauty parlor appointment for your bridal party and you, if needed.
A bridesmaid’s luncheon or party could be scheduled if it fits in with your budgeting requirements.
Schedule your bridal photography appointment
Arrange to select and purchase your ring bearer pillow, candles, rose petals, rice, bubbles, etc. for your wedding exit of the church/temple. Find out the rules about throwing rice. There is usually a fee to have this cleaned up outside of the church/temple. Birdseed is a good way to get around this without the additional fee.

TWO WEEKS BEFORE THE WEDDING
Finalize wedding transportation
Finalize the number of favorable guest responses
Double-check your musician, photographer and caterer. Give direction to those who need them.
Specify how you would like to be introduced by the musician/DJ when you enter the catering hall and are introduced for the first time?. Mr. and Mrs. John Smith or Lisa and John Smith.
What songs should be chosen for the dance with parents, if you had decided to do this.
Will you have a cake cutting ceremony? Will you feed each other cake. Discuss with your significant other, that it is not funny to “mush” cake into the others face while feeding them. Makeup is hard to replace, cake in hair with hairspray is almost impossible to get out, not to mention the embarrassment and anger that this could invoke. I mention this because I officiated at a wedding where this happened and the Father of the Bride was so angry – as was the Bride – that the Bride left the hall and marriage was annulled. So in the end, the expense of the wedding and the annulment and of course the loss of a happily married life together was more than the groom had bargained for.
Will you have the garter belt and throwing of the bridal bouquet?
Just remember that this is somewhat embarrassing to the single women invited to your wedding. So unless you know all of your guests intimately, you may just want to pass this tradition up.
The garter up your leg is also somewhat embarrassing, however, if you are a good sport, then go for it. Discuss this with your partner.
Finalize seating arrangement
Get marriage license in Town Hall where the Bride resides.
Prepare wedding announcements to be mailed after the wedding
Check on your hotel accommodations for accuracy

ONE WEEK BEFORE THE WEDDING
Plan seating arrangements for the final time
Confirm desired photographs with photographer. You have the right to say you want a picture of the Bride with her Father and the Groom’s Father, Grandma with the grandchildren, your mom and dad alone, your parents with you and with your spouse, etc. Talk to the photographer to let him or her know exactly what your dream wedding pictures would be like.
Are you having the wedding video taped?
Are you having the wedding audio taped?
Do you have entrance music – organ or CD of lovely wedding marches and recessionals.
Who will run the CD player if you are using CD’s. Who will shut it off once the ceremony starts.
Finalize the number of guests with caterer
Pack for your Honeymoon.
Style your hair with headpiece
Cosmetic choices should be made
Final fitting of wedding dress and bridal party’s gowns.
Pick up rings, try them on for fit and adjust if too small or large.
Rehearsal dinner or rehearsal without dinner one to two days before wedding.

YOUR WEDDING DAY
THIS IS THE DAY YOU’VE BEEN WAITING FOR SO ENJOY IT!
Eat at least one meal before the ceremony
Get your hair professional done with headpiece/if arranged and you have plenty of time, get a manicure to top off the perfectly groomed look. Remember, less is more. You don’t want to be overly made up (and look totally different than you do everyday) and your nails should not be so shocking that everyone sees them and not you or your very expensive dress and headpiece.
Start dressing one to two hours ahead of the ceremony
Will you be having the photographer come to the house to take pre-ceremony pictures? Will he meet you at a specific place at the church/temple or place of your ceremony before the wedding to take pictures on the grounds?
Have mother of the groom seated five minutes before ceremony
Have mother of the bride seated immediately before processional
Arrange of the aisle runner to be rolled out by the ushers immediately before the processional.
Be sure to bring your marriage license with you on this day as well as the rings.
Assign people to take care of these tasks for you since you will be too nervous to remember much other than your name and how to say, “I do.”
The Maid of Honor and Best Man normally sign the marriage license as witnesses and the Celebrant will mail the receipt of your wedding to your Town Hall. Make sure you have the proper address, envelope and postage for the Celebrant so there is no mix up in where to send it.
You will get a copy of your marriage license that day, however, it is not an official document. You may order your marriage license approximately two weeks after the wedding. My suggestion is that you order several copies so one can be put in a safe deposit box, and the others one could be used as proof of your change of name for your license, registration, medical insurance, social security card, passport, etc.
If things go wrong on your very special day, it would be better if you just go with the flow. In all likelihood, no one else will notice the mistake because they are having a wonderful time celebrating your happy life together. There is no need to get upset or worry on your special day, so let everything go! You have waited a lifetime for this day and believe me, it goes much too quickly to be upset over petty nonsense.

If for no other sake, enjoy your day — because now you are now married! You did it!!!!!!!!

Vikki Anderson is available to perform interfaith ceremonies such as weddings, baptisms, welcoming ceremonies as well as naming and handfasting ceremonies.  See http://www.VikkiAnderson.net under Interfaith Minister for more information about ceremonies and weddings.  973-492-3110.

Christian/Pagan Handfasting Ceremony

Priest/ess:
We have come together here in celebration of the joining together of (bride’s name) and (groom’s name). 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 today, we can hope to leave them with 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.

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’s Name, is true that you come of your own free will and accord?

Bride: Yes, it is true.

Priest/ess: With whom do you come and whose blessings accompany you.

Father: She comes with me, her father, and is accompanied by all of her family’s blessings.

Priest/ess: Please join hands with your beloved and listen to that which I am about to say.

Above you are the stars, below you are the stones, as time doth pass remember:

Like a stone your love be firm; like a star should your love be constant. Let the powers of the mind and of the intellect guide you in your marriage, let the strength of your wills bind you together, let the power of love and the desire make you happy, and the strength of your dedication make you inseparable. Be close, but not to close. Possess one another, yet be understanding. Have patience with the other, for storms will come and will pass quickly again.

Be free in giving affection and warmth. Have no fear and let not the ways of the unenlightened give you discomfort, for God/dess is with you always.

Groom’s Name, I have not the right to bind thee to Bride’s Name, only you have this right. If it be your wish, say so at this time and place your ring on her hand. (Place ring on bride’s left hand ring finger).

Groom: It is my wish.

Priest/ess: Bride’s Name, if it be your wish for Groom’s Name to be bound to you, place the ring on his finger. (Place ring on groom’s left hand ring finger).

Bride: It is my wish.

Priest/ess: To Groom

Repeat after me? I, (groom’s name), in the name of the spirit of God that resides within us all, by the life that courses within my blood and the love that resides within my heart, take thee (bride’s name) to my hand, my heart, and my spirit, to be my chosen one. To desire thee and be desired by thee, to possess three, and be possessed by thee, without sin or shame, for naught can exist in the purity of my love for thee. I promise to love thee wholly and completely without reservation, in sickness and in health, in plenty and in poverty, in life and beyond, where we shall meet, remember, and love again. I shall not seek to change thee in any way. I shall respect thee, thy beliefs, thy people, and thy ways as I respect myself.

Priest/ess: To Bride

Repeat after me? I, (bride’s name), in the name of the spirit of God that resides within us all, by the life that courses within my blood and the love that resides within my heart, take thee (groom’s 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 sin or shame, for naught can exist in the purity of my love for thee. I promise to love thee wholly and completely without reservation, in sickness and in health, in plenty and in poverty, in life and beyond, where we shall meet, remember, and love again. I shall not seek to change thee in any way. I shall respect thee, thy beliefs, thy people, and thy ways as I respect myself.

Priest/ess: (Hands groom chalice filled with wine)

You may drink your fill from the cup of love.

Groom holds chalice to bride while she sips then bride takes chalice and holds it to groom while he sips. The chalice is then handed back to the Priest/ess who sets it on the table. Next the Priest/ess takes the plate of bread, giving it to the groom. Same procedure repeated with bread, groom feeding bride and bride feeding groom.

By the power vested in me by God and the State of (name State), I now pronounce you husband and wife. May your love so endure that its flame remains a guiding light unto you both.

You may kiss the bride.
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Please feel free to use any part of this ceremony as part of your own. Vikki Anderson is available to perform interfaith ceremonies such as weddings, baptisms, welcoming ceremonies as well as naming and handfasting ceremonies.  See http://www.VikkiAnderson.net under Interfaith Minister for more information about ceremonies and weddings.  973-492-3110.