Friends and family, we have gathered here today to rejoice and celebrate the ultimate act of commitment and love that two people can exhibit…an expression that rarely can be paralleled. John and Emily, have decided to commit themselves to one another’s hearts, to share in all of life’s incredible moments, and to help assist in making each other’s dreams realities. Each of you that had assembled here today has played an important role in their lives and each holds a special place in their thoughts and affections. It is appropriate and meaningful that they call upon you on this occasion to take part in celebrating this important event. Emily and John, today you are surrounded by your friends and family, all of them gathered to witness your marriage and to share in the joy of this occasion, a day which will be one of the most memorable days of your life. This marriage was created by friendship, respect and love. Emily and John, bring with them the dreams which drew them together. They bring the fullness of their hearts as a treasure to be shared, and they bring with them the ability to view the world, themselves, and each other with a sense of humor.
Emily and John, rejoice in the knowledge that you have friends and family who have come to share this day with you. They will continue to need you both just as you will need them. Be wise, therefore, and call upon these people whom are closest to your hearts, for in your love for one another, you can demonstrate a deeper and more encompassing love for all within your lives to experience.
The bride and groom commit themselves today, to each other, in sacred trust. They promise to embrace conflict, as well as peace; to work as well as play; to struggle as well as bask; to give as well as receive; and to be with, stay with, and move toward one another. They view marriage as a coming together at all levels of being, mind, body, and spirit. A commitment includes the willingness to be open and vulnerable; and the courage to take risks.
Marriage consists of entrusting our deepest selves into the loving care of one another. It is a public and legal act, as well as, an emotional and spiritual act. The spiritual aspect of marriage should be embraced openly, seriously, and completely, as marriage is a conscious act of will. A couple who are wed must continually renew their will to be joined and accept the challenges that living together in love offer. Emily and John, you must decide that you will face the fears that are a necessary part of establishing and nurturing an intimate relationship.
Look at one another and remember this moment in time. Before this moment you have been many things to one another- acquaintance, friend, companion, lover, dancing partner, and even teacher, for you have learned much from one another in these last few years. Now you shall say a few words that take you across a threshold of life, and things will never quite be the same between you. For after these vows, you shall say to the world, this- is my husband, this- is my wife "
You are now taking into your care and keeping the happiness of the one person in all of the world whom you love deepest. You are adding to your life not only the affection of each other, but also the companionship and blessing of a deep trust as well. You are agreeing to share strength, responsibilities and to share love. To make this relationship work, therefore, takes more than love. It takes trust, to know in your hearts that you want only the best for each other. It takes dedication, to stay open to one another, to learn and grow, even when it is difficult to do so. And it takes faith, to go forward together without knowing what the future holds for you both. While love is our natural state of being, these other qualities are not as easy to come by. They are not a destination, but a journey.
Your wedding ring is a symbol of your promise to one another. And just as the shape of your ring, the circle, is infinite, strong and simplistic so to may your married life with one another be. Let these rings always remind you both that you are part of something bigger. A bond built on a strong foundation of trust, respect, and adoration.
(Groom and Bride repeat the following part after Officiant)
“This ring is my promise/ to love you selflessly/, see you for all of the beauty/ you embody,/ and grow with you/ throughout the seasons / of our life together.”
(After reciting, they place the wedding ring on each other's fourth finger)
THE KEYS TO LOVE (Another reading may be substituted)
The key to love is understanding... The ability to comprehend not only the spoken word, but those unspoken gestures, the little things, that say so much by themselves.
The key to love is forgiveness... to accept each others faults and pardon mistakes, without forgetting, but with remembering what you learn from them.
The key to love is sharing... Facing your good fortunes as well as the bad, together; both conquering problems, forever searching for ways to intensify your happiness.
The key to love is giving... without thought of return, but with the hope of just a simple smile, and by giving in but never giving up.
The key to love is respect... realizing that you are two separate people, with different ideas; that you don't belong to each other, that you belong with each other, and share a mutual bond.
The key to love is inside us all... It takes time and patience to unlock all the ingredients that will take you to its threshold; it is the continual learning process that demands a lot of work... but the rewards are more than worth the effort... and that is the key to love.
STATEMENT OF INTENT
(John repeats the following verses after Officiant)
I John/, take you, Emily/, as my wife/. And I promise./ To love you day by day/, taking each one/ as it comes.To communicate/, so unspoken thoughts/ are not misunderstood. To make our house a home/, a sanctuary / and a refuge/. To stand beside you/ when it seems/, as if you're standing alone To believe in you/, to believe in us./ And to foster /our future life together. For as long as we both shall live. (Followed by Emily)
CONCLUSION AND PRONOUNCEMENT
We who have come together today have heard the willingness of Emily and John to be joined in marriage. They have come of their free will and in our presence, have declared their love and commitment to each other. They have given and received a ring as a symbol of their promises. Therefore, by the power vested in me by the laws of the State of New York, I take great pride and pleasure as I declare them
husband and wife.
You may now kiss your Bride.
And may your marriage be modern enough to deal with these changing times, but traditional enough to last a lifetime. Go and meet life gladly as husband and wife.