Contemporary Marriage Service

Contemporary Marriage Service

Intro

Dear Friends,

we are gathered here today in the presence of God to witness the marriage of John and Jane and to celebrate with them.  They have asked you here to be a part of their wedding day  as they pledge themselves to each other.  Into this marriage they both have come to be joined.

Declaration of Intent

It is a way of life that all should revere, and none should lightly undertake. John and Jane, you have made known that you wish to marry each other, and no one has shown any valid reason why you may not. If either of you know any reason why you may not lawfully be married, now is the time to declare it.

It is not intended in marriage that husbands and wives cease to be individuals, but that both may continue to grow in love by support and concern for each other’s well being.

You travelled down different paths to reach the point at which you met.  From that day you have travelled together, experiencing both wonderful and difficult times. In this journey you have learned much about each other, and about the bond that has grown between you. Today you take the next step in your journey. You must promise to love,  respect, and support each other in all the rough times , the sad times, and celebrate all the happy times together.
John: will you take Jane to be your wife, to love her, comfort her, honour and protect her; and forsaking all others to be faithful to her for as long as you both shall live?
I will.                              
Jane: will you take John to be your  husband, to love him, comfort him, honour and protect him; and forsaking all others to be faithful to him for as long as you both shall live?
I will.
                              
You will be together for evermore, but let there be spaces in your togetherness, and let the winds of heaven dance between you.  Love one another, but do not make a bond of love; let it rather be a moving sea, between the shores of your souls.
Sing, dance, and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone, even as the strings of a lute are alone, though they quiver with the same music. Stand together, but not too near together, for the pillars of the temple stood apart, and the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other’s shadow.

 

The Marriage Vows

I,  John,  take you Jane to be my wife,
to laugh with you in joy,
to grieve with you in sorrow,
to grow with you in love,
to be faithful to you alone,
for as long as we both shall live.
I,  Jane,  take you John to be my husband,
to laugh with you in joy,
to grieve with you in sorrow,
to grow with you in love,
to be faithful to you alone,
for as long as we both shall live.
From this day on, may you always communicate openly and honestly with each other, and live these days of joy. May you live in each other’s company in peace and trust, and may your days be filled with the rewards of all you have experienced to bring you to this place. May you endlessly delight in each other, and love and fulfill each other always.
Love is more than a feeling.
It’s a commitment.
It’s a commitment to work things out ,
and to resolve the issues;
To communicate when it’s hard to,
and to forgive each other and start fresh each day.
Good marriages take time and effort to build and to nurture.

 

The Declaration of Marriage

John and Jane, you have chosen each other in love and freedom. You have declared your purpose before God and this gathering, and you have made your pledges one to another. It is now my pleasure to pronounce you husband and wife.
Those whom God has joined together – let no one put asunder.
The Nuptial Kiss