Friends, we have been invited here today to share with ___________ and ___________ a most important moment in their lives. In the time they have been together their love and understanding of each other has grown and matured. Now they have decided to live their lives together as husband and wife.
Parents and people are seated
We have been invited to hear ___________ and ___________ as they promise to face the future together, accepting whatever may lie ahead. For the world that God has created for them, with its beauty and grace that is all around, with the strength that it offers and the peace that it brings, makes them truly grateful.
___________ and ___________, nothing is easier than saying words and nothing harder than living them day after day. What you promise today must be renewed and redecided tomorrow. At the end of this ceremony legally you will be man and wife, but you still must decide each day that stretches out before you, that you want to be married.
Real love is something beyond the warmth and glow, the excitement and romance of being deeply in love. It is caring as much about the welfare and happiness of your marriage partner as about your own. But real love is not total absorption in each other; it is looking outward in the same direction –together. Love makes burdens lighter, because you divide them. It make joys more intense because you share them. It makes you stronger so you can reach out and become involved with life in ways you dared not risk alone.
Both sets of parents stand
Pastor — Who brings ___________ to stand beside ___________ ?
Bride’s parents — We do.
Pastor to both sets of parents — Parents, are you willing, now and always to support and strengthen this marriage by upholding both ___________ and ___________ with your love and concern?
Both sets of parents respond — We are.
Pastor — Then you, you may be seated.
Pastor to Groom — ___________, will you take ___________ to be your wife? Will you love and respect her? Will you be honest with her always? Will you stand by her through whatever may come? Will you make whatever adjustments are necessary so that you can genuinely share your life with her?
Groom — I will.
Pastor to Bride — ___________ will you take ___________ to be your husband? Will you be honest with him always? Will you stand by him through whatever may come? Will you make whatever adjustments are necessary so that you can genuinely share your life with him?
Bride — I will.
Pastor to Groom — ___________, what token do you give of the vows you have made?
Groom — A ring. (Groom repeats his ring vows and places ring on bride’s finger.)
Pastor to Bride — ___________, what token do you give of the vows you have made?
Bride — A ring. (Bride repeats her ring vows and places ring on groom’s finger.)
Pastor:___________ and ___________ ,we have heard you promise to share your lives in marriage. We recognize and respect the covenant you have made. It is not a minister standing before you that makes your marriage real, but the honest and sincerity of what you have said and done here before your friends and relatives in the sight of God.
Forasmuch as ___________ and ___________ have consented together in holy wedlock, and have witnessed the same before God and this company, by the authority committed unto me as a Minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, I declare that ___________ and ___________ are now husband and wife, according to the ordinance of God and the law of the State of Washington: in the name of the Father, and the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen. Whom therefore God hath joined together, let no man put assunder.
Now the ceremony is over and the experience of living day by day as married people is about to begin. Go forth to meet it, gladly, love life so it will love you. May blessings of God be with you.
I now present to you Mr. and Mrs. ___________
This article may not be written by an Apostolic author, but it contains many excellent principles and concepts that can be adapted to most churches. As the old saying goes, “Eat the meat. Throw away the bones.”