Wedding Ceremony Structure

The following shows many of the structural elements found in wedding services, both religious and non religious. 

A personalised ceremony weaves your own love story, hopes and personal beliefs through the service itself, creating a bespoke ceremony and theme.

Note:  example below is not a wedding ceremony - rather some of the key elements you should expect along with your own personal words and story. 

Opening words

 ----and----you have come here today to celebrate your love for one another.This is one of life's great moments, as you commit to a shared future together based on mutual love, respect and caring. It's a joyous occasion and we are privileged to be here supporting that decision.

Readings

Happiness in marriage is not something that just happens.  A good marriage must be created.  In 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 mutual sense of values and common objectives.  It is standing together facing the world. 

Consents

(Groom) do you take (Bride) as your wife 

Will you be honest with her, sharing both good times and bad, treating her with respect and kindness, sharing both friendship and love.

(Groom) I  will.

(Bride ) do you take (Groom) as your husband 

Will you be honest with him, sharing both good times and bad, treating him with respect and kindness, sharing both friendship and love.

(Bride) I  will.

And will you------and------family and friends give your blessing to this marriage, offering your support and encouragement over the years to come?

 

(Gathering) We will. 

Marriage vows   

------, Before these witnesses I take you be my wife. I will love and care for you always, offering the best of myself, sharing both my laughter and tears, I will be your best friend and supporter today, tomorrow and forever.

------, Before these witnesses I take you be my husband. I will love and care for you always, offering best of myself, sharing both my laughter and tears, I will be your best friend and supporter today, tomorrow and forever. 

Ring explanation

The wedding ring is a symbol of life and commitment, an unbroken circle that speaks of eternity. The precious metals purified by fire, represent your enduring love and one life together.

Ring exchange

(Groom) I give you this ring as a token of my love and devotion.   

(Bride) I accept this ring as a symbol of our love and life together. 

Pronouncement

------and------We have all witnessed the exchange of your vows, you have made promises to each other, exchanging rings and pledging your love.  I now pronounce you husband and wife, you may kiss the bride.

Musical interlude

(Signing marriage documents)

Presentation and blessing 

May your marriage be blessed with all the surprise, all the paradox and all the adventure which is life and love, and together may you know the joy of being one.   

Ladies and Gentlemen may I present the newly weds----- and -----

There are a number of elements which can be added to a basic wedding ceremony to add significance and meaning these range from lighting candles to hand fasting - an example is included below.

Simple handfasting ceremony

------ and ------we now symbolically tie a knot in the fabric of your lives.

(celebrant places fabric or cord around the Bride and grooms hands or wrists)   

This is a binding not just of hands but of hearts, futures and dreams.

This material like our lives is made up of many different fibres and strands. But when combined they make something not only of great complexity but enduring beauty and strength.

------ and ------may your love for one another enfold and protect you from this day forward.