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Beautiful and With A Sand Ceremony (You can cut & paste elements from this ceremony into other ceremonies)

WELCOMING STATEMENT
Minister:

Welcome everyone!--- On behalf of
BRIDE and GROOM --- I would like to welcome each and everyone of you here today.---


All of you has given something of yourselves into their lives --- and they want you to know that they will always treasure your love ---your encouragement,---and your support.


And, because YOU are all so special to them--- they felt that it is important that you be here with them today---


as they begin this new and exciting chapter in their lives.

GIVING OF THE BRIDE
Minister:

And now I would ask--- who presents this woman to be married to this man?

OPENING PRAYER
Minister:

Since we are gathered together today in the sight of God --- to witness and to bless the marriage of GROOM and BRIDE.--- It’s appropriate that we begin with a prayer:


O Lord, this is a happy day for all of us because this is the wedding day of
GROOM and BRIDE. They have come now before You, pledging their lives and their hearts to one another. We ask that they always be as true and loving as they are at this moment, and that You fill their hearts with kindness and understanding. Lord, help them to be sweetheart, helpmate, friend, and guide to one another; so that together they may meet everything that life has to offer. May their home be a place of love and harmony and bless this day, their wedding day, and walk beside them forever. Amen


OFFICIANTS EXHORTATION
Minister:

BRIDE & GROOM, A poet once wrote these words:

Suddenly there's no more mystery ---
It feels like you're the other half of me ---
We've only just begun ---
Our two hearts beat as one.


Today I'd like to talk more about the union --- that you are both about to enter into.---


To symbolize this union --- I'd like for to join hands as you face one another.


Now, contemplate just how special those hands are that you how hold:


  • The hands you are holding are the hands that henceforth --- will give you strength when you need strength ---

     

  • comfort when you seek comfort--- & tenderness when you long for tenderness.

     

  • They are the hands that will countless times wipe the tears from your eyes --- tears of sorrow and tears of joy.

     

  • They are the hands that will hold all of those who you love.

     

  • They are the hands of your best friend --- holding your hands on your wedding day

  • as you promise to love one another --- and work together to build your future.

     

Now, GROOM and BRIDE--- you've gathered your friends and family together --- to celebrate this special day with you ---


And, I can tell just from their faces --- that they love you both very much --- and that love is important.


We need the love --- the encouragement --- and the support of our friends and relatives.


And I too --- as your wedding minister --- have a few words of encouragement & support --- I'd like to share with you.


But what I'd like to say today is more than just “common sense” --- and more than just “my experience”---


because what I’d like to share with you today is from God's word --- The Bible


Because, if nothing more --- the Bible is a record of people forming and maintaining relationships.


The Bible says that a strong and long-lasting relationship --- is founded on love.


And that’s important --- because as important as this ceremony is for many reasons---


we would not be here today --- if you two did not already love one another.


And you would not be about to pledge your lives to one another --- if you did not already love one another.


So, I think it’s important that I say a few words about what love is ---


and there is no better definition of Love --- than that which is found in the Bible ---

where in 1st Corinthians 13 --- the Apostle Paul--- describing love, tells us:

  • Love endures and is kind.

  • Love is not envious or jealous.

  • Love wants not for itself.

  • Love is not puffed up --- nor does it behave wrongly.

  • Love seeks not for it's own.

  • Love is not easily provoked.

  • Love is not rude.

  • Love thinks No evil.

  • Love does not rejoice in wrong --- but rejoices in the truth.

  • Love bears all things --- believes all things,--- endures all things --- and love never fails.


So, a marriage that lasts --- is not just two people living together ---


and it’s much more than just signing --- your names to a license or certificate.


No --- a marriage that lasts is MUCH more that this.


It’s an agreement between two people --- who have pledged to love each other ---


to trust each other---and to face all that life has to offer, together.


And though marriage is a life-long commitment -–


it is not intended to give one person possession or ownership in any way over the other---but just the opposite ---


it is intended to allow freedom for both of you --- as your merge your two lives and personalities together.


Marriage is built on the basic elements of who you are--- while in no way subtracting from who you are –-


but adding each of you to a new union --- which becomes more than the sum of the two parts.


Another way of thinking about the marriage relationship --- is to think of a good friend ---


because a good friend --- is someone you like to be with --- go places with --- laugh with & cry with….


But a best friend is even more than this ---


because with your best friend you can easily discuss your ideas --- your hopes --- and your dreams---


and you understand each other’s thoughts and needs.


Frequently --- your best friend somehow understands your needs better than you do ---


Sometimes, just being together is what you need --- Sometimes, simply holding hands is what you need.


So in many ways --- this love that you share is a “best friendship;”---


but it is a LOVE AND FRIENDSHIP THAT HAS CAUGHT FIRE and soars over everything else on earth.


You know --- that wherever you go and whatever you do --- you two are a team facing life together.


And even though we know --- that you cannot always be physically together---

the bond that I’m talking about is not the bond of your bodies --- but the bond of your spirits --- your hearts --- and your love.


And when you CAN be together --- it’s always a special privilege of the husband and the wife ---


to enjoy the company of each another --- the one you love.


So, here you stand today --- to say your wedding vows to one another.


In doing so --- it's important that you both understand ---


that the vows that you are about to make --- should not be undertaken lightly ---


but with a great deal of consideration and respect.


With that in mind --- I am going to ask you to answer a question ---- and then have you say your vows to one another.


EXCHANGE OF VOWS
Minister:

GROOM do you take BRIDE to be your wife --- to live together in holy marriage


to love her --- comfort her --- cherish and keep her, in health and in sickness,


and forsaking all others --- be faithful to her for as long as you both shall live?

(GROOM answers “Yes”)


Then please make to her the following vows:

  • I, GROOM, take you BRIDE to be my wife.

  • To have and to hold from this day forward,

  • I promise to be your true and loving husband,

  • and to love and honor you always.

  • I do this because I love you today

  • I will love you tomorrow

  • and I will love you forever.

 
BRIDE do you take GROOM to be your husband --- to live together in holy marriage---


to love him --- comfort him --- honor and keep him, in health and in sickness ---


and forsaking all others --- be faithful to him for as long as you both shall live?

(BRIDE answers “Yes”)

Then please make to him the following vows:


  • I, BRIDE, take you GROOM to be my husband.

  • To have and to hold from this day forward.

  • I promise to be your true and loving wife.

  • and to love and honor you always.

  • I do this because I love you today

  • I will love you tomorrow

  • and I will love you forever.

     

RING EXCHANGE
Minister:

GROOM & BRIDE --- in a moment you will be exchanging wedding rings---


Throughout time, the ring has been a symbol of unending love ---


because like time --- the ring has no beginning and no end.

It is a circle --- the emblem of eternity.


Wedding rings are made of precious metals --- the purest metals,---


and the type that is least tarnished and most enduring;---


to show how lasting and imperishable is the faith ---

which is now mutually pledged between the two of you before God.


GROOM, do you have such a symbol of you love for BRIDE?

Then as you place the ring on her finger --- please say to her the following words:


  • BRIDE, I give you this ring as a symbol of my love

  • and as a reminder that I have chosen you

  • to be the one to share my life.


BRIDE, do you have such a symbol of your love for GROOM?


Then as you place the ring on his finger--- please say to him the the following words:


  • GROOM, I give you this ring as a symbol of my love

  • and as a reminder that I have chosen you

  • to be the one to share my life.

     

SAND CEREMONY (OPTIONAL)
Minister:

Now I'd like each of you to stand on one side of this table

(BRIDE and GROOM stand next to table)


GROOM and BRIDE you have just sealed your relationship by giving vows and exchanging rings symbolizing your life-long promise to each other. Here on this table are three vessels. Two of which contain sand.

The vessel of sand closest to you represents all that you are and all that you’ll ever be as an individual. It also represents your life before today. In just a moment I will ask you to pour your of vessel sand into the center container. This will symbolize the blending of your lives together into one union.


Now, In unison, please pour your sand into the center vessel.


I think it’s also exciting to realize that the vessels are made of glass – just as glass itself is made of sand. I’d like to think that these vessels of glass represent the sands of time that have brought you together to this moment in time. Each grain of sand in your separate vessel represents a special moment, a decision, a feeling or something that helped shape you into who you are today. As you pour your separate vessels of sand into a common vessel, you as a separate and independent individual no longer exists. Instead, you blend together into a loving and supportive marital union.


But you can see that the individual grains do not cease to exist just because you have poured them from one container into another. In much the same way, your memories, your feelings, your experiences -- everything that makes you who you are now -- are still there. You do not become any less of who you are because of your new union in marriage. You will always be who you are, but you are now united in a team. From this time on, all of the memories, feelings and experiences will be shared by both of you and you will become stronger as you face all that life has to offer -- together.
(pouring is finished)


BRIDE and GROOM, after today the individual you no longer exists, just as your container of sand no longer exists. You are joined together and are now one. And just as these grains of sand can never be separated and poured again into the individual containers, so you are in the covenant that you have formed here today.

CLOSING PRAYER (Option 1 of 2 options)
Minister:

Let us pray:
We ask you, Lord, to bless this couple whose lives are now joined in an unbroken circle, much like these rings that now encircle their fingers. I ask that they may find in one another, the love that all men and all women hunger to find. May they continue to grow in their understanding of this love, their understanding of one another, and their understanding of You too, Lord, for the rest of their lives. May these rings on their fingers symbolize the touch of Your spirit of love in their hearts forever.

Amen


Or


CLOSING PRAYER (Option 2 of 2 options)
Minister:

Let us pray:

Almighty God and Heavenly Father, we thank your giving us the blessing of having been here today to witness the joining together of GROOM & BRIDE in Holy Matrimony.


Father, since GROOM & BRIDE are now embarking on a new and wondrous journey together through life, we pray that as the years pass, that they will call upon you together as Husband and wife for direction in their lives.

Father we ask that you would daily strengthen their love and commitment to each other, equipping them with the patience, the kindness, the forgiveness, the slowness to speak and eagerness to listen to each other as they travel the road of life together.


And Father, If you should bless them with children, we ask that they would be born in good health and that you would bestow upon GROOM & BRIDE the wisdom, the patience and love they will need as stewards of that blessing.


And now, Father, for the friends and family who are here today, we ask that you would help them to fulfill their responsibility to hold GROOM & BRIDE accountable to the vows they have made to each other and to you on this joyous day.


We ask these things in the name of the Savior Jesus Christ.

Amen


PRONOUNCEMENT
Minister:

GROOM and BRIDE, you have made your vows before each other; and, you have sealed your vows with the giving and receiving of these rings. So now, by the power vested in me as an ordained minister by the State of {Insert State Name} I pronounce you to be HUSBAND AND WIFE and I invite you to kiss one another.


PRESENTATION
Minister:

Family and Friends, It is my great honor and privilege to present to you for the very first time, Mr. & Mrs. [GROOM First Name] And [BRIDE First Name] + [GROOM's Surname]


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