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Sample Ceremony - Josh & Lauren (Rose Ceremony)

Procession

Giving of the Bride to the Groom

Welcome
Please be seated. Friends and family, what a joy it is to welcome you here, for we have come to celebrate the miracle of love and to witness the union of this man and this woman into the bond and contract of Matrimony. JOSH and LAUREN, every experience you have ever had, everything you have ever done, and every twist and turn in life has miraculously brought you to this very moment as you now stand before these witnesses to take each other as husband and wife.

Charge to the Bride & Groom
I charge you both to remember that God alone will stand as the foundation of a happy and enduring home. If the vows you make today are kept, your life together will be full of joy and peace, and the home which you make shall thrive through whatever the future may hold. In this new life together, I encourage you to always remember the thrill of your early love. Cherish the visions and hopes you have on this day, and do not let them be tarnished by common events or routine habit. I charge you both to make your love for each other a growing part of your lives, nurturing it every day in every way possible. But, it is also necessary to recognize that marriage is a relationship of two people, neither of whom are always at their best. During these hard and trying times, I implore you to always act with charity, understanding, and compassion toward one another. And finally, I charge you both to remember this day as the most important day in your lives--as the day in which you promised, before these witnesses and each other, that you will love each other no matter what for all the days of your lives.

Prayer
Let us pray. Lord, we ask that you bless the marriage of JOSH and LAUREN.
When there is injury, help them find comfort
When there is discord, help them find harmony
When there is doubt, help them find faith
When there is despair, help them find hope
When there is darkness, help them find light
When there is sadness, help them find joy
Show them that it is only in giving that they will receive
It is only in forgiving that they are forgiven
and It is only in dying that they are born to eternal life.
We ask this not just for JOSH and LAUREN but for all of us here today as well as those not here that we now name in our hearts. [pause] We ask that you and those that have gone before watch over them and be with them for all the days of their lives.
In your name we pray, AMEN.
Optional Music Selection

Betrothal
JOSH and LAUREN, the two of you are about to become husband and wife. You are about to pledge everything you have and everything you are to each other. This is not a commitment that either of you should take lightly. The vows you are about to take do not come with an asterisk or fine print that says “unless I change my mind” or “unless I’m having a bad day” or “until it becomes too difficult.” The promises you are about to make to each other must be honored every moment of every day for the rest of your lives. But…these promises come with the greatest reward you could possibly imagine - true and honest love.

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, always perseveres. Love never fails.

With this knowledge of love, JOSH, do you take LAUREN to be your wedded wife, and in the presence of these witnesses do you vow that you will do everything in your power to make your love for her a growing part of your life? Will you continue to strengthen it from day to day and week to week with your best resources? Will you stand by her in sickness or in health, in poverty or in wealth, and will you shun all others and keep yourself to her alone as long as you both shall live? If so, answer “I Do.”

LAUREN, do you take JOSH to be your wedded husband, and in the presence of these witnesses do you vow that you will do everything in your power to make your love for him a growing part of your life? Will you continue to strengthen it from day to day and week to week with your best resources? Will you stand by him in sickness or in health, in poverty or in wealth, and will you shun all others and keep yourself to him alone as long as you both shall live? If so, answer “I Do.”

Please turn and face each other, taking the other’s hands in yours. I’d like you to take a moment to look down at the hands that each of you now hold.

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 temporarily comes your way. 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 give you support and encouragement to chase down your dreams. These are the hands that will hold you tight as you struggle through difficult times. These are the hands that will give you strength when you need it. These are the hands that will lift your chin and brush your cheek as they raise your face to look into eyes that are filled with overwhelming love for you.
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.

Sharing of Vows
Josh & Lauren have chosen to write their own vows. Josh, will you please share yours with your bride? Lauren, will you please share yours with your groom?

Exchange of the Rings
The wedding ring is a symbol of eternity. It is an outward and visible sign of an inward and invisible bond which unites two hearts in endless love. As a token of your love and of this bond, JOSH please place the ring on the finger of your bride and repeat after me:
LAUREN, I give you this ring as a symbol of my love and faithfulness to you.
By the same token LAUREN, please place the ring on the finger of your groom and repeat after me: JOSH, I give you this ring as a symbol of my love and faithfulness to you.

Rose Ceremony
Your first gift to each other for your wedding today has been your wedding rings - which shall always be an outward demonstration of your vows of love and respect and a public showing of your commitment to each other. In addition, you both have given and received one of the most valuable and precious gifts of life - one I hope you always remember - the gift of true and abiding love within the devotion of marriage.

You now have what remains the most honorable title that exists between a woman and a man - the title of "wife" and "husband." It is now my great privilege to be the first to address you as such and for your first gift as wife and husband, that gift will be a single red rose bud.
(Officiant hands each a red rose bud)

The rose is considered a symbol of love and a single rose always means only one thing - it means, "I love you." So it is appropriate that for your first gift that gift would be a single rose bud.
Please exchange the rose buds as your first gift to each other as wife and husband.
Within these rose buds, if given proper loving care, is the potential for an even more beautiful expression of Life and Love in the form of the mature flower. And so it is with your marriage. At this point your marriage is like these rose buds - ready, with proper loving care - to unfold into a very beautiful expression of life.

JOSH and LAUREN, I would ask that where ever you make your home in the future - whether it be a large and elegant home - or a small and graceful one - that you both select one very special location for roses; so that on each anniversary of this truly wonderful occasion you both may take a rose to that spot both as a recommitment to the holy vows which you have made before God and those present on this beautiful day.

Those of us who are already married know that marriage, like life, brings with it many joys and also many challenges. We also know that love, while beautiful, does not always show its prettiest face. There are days when we may find it hard to express the depth of our love for one another.
Sometimes it is difficult to find the right words. It might be difficult to find the words to say "I am sorry" or "I forgive you"; "I need you" or "I am hurting". If this should happen, if you simply can not find these words, leave a rose at that spot which both of you have selected - for that rose then says what matters most of all and should overpower all other things and all other words.
That rose says, "I still love you."

It is wise to understand this as a statement of love and the need, or request for that extra bit of tender loving care permits the beauty of the rose to come forth from the rose bud. So also will that love permit the beauty of maturity to come forth from your marriage in every situation. Your partner should accept this rose for the words which cannot be found, and remember the love and hope that you both share today.

JOSH and LAUREN, if there is anything you remember of this marriage ceremony, it is that it was love that brought you here today, it is only love which can make it a glorious union, and it is by love which your marriage shall endure. Whatever the situation, love, understanding, acceptance and forgiveness can make everything right.

Pronouncement
JOSH and LAUREN, you have chosen to enter into the promise of marriage with each other by pledging your love and devotion with your vows and sealing those vows with the exchange of the rings. Therefore, with the power vested in me by the State of Wisconsin, I now pronounce you Husband and Wife. You may now kiss your bride.

Closing Prayer/Blessing
May the road rise up to meet you.
May the wind always be at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
and rains fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of His hand.

Presentation of the Bride & Groom
Friends and family, it is with great pleasure that I introduce to you
Mr. & Mrs. Lastname
Recession

 

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