Where a marriage is being officiated by a Celebrant, there is legal wording as per the Marriage Act 1961 (Section 45) , that the couple must declare to witnesses. Once this declaration has been made, couples can then affirm their love by reciting vows - tradtional or personlised. Personalised vows are unique to you as a couple and should include things that you would like to promise each other. I have books and leaflets to help you when writing your vows, as some couples can find the process are little overwhelming.
When planning a Ceremony, whether it be a Wedding or Naming , an inclusion of a reading or verse is a lovely way to include your family and friends in the ceremony. These readings or verses can come from a variety of sources: - lyrics to a favourite song, poems, readings from the Bible, romantic novels. The internet is also a great source of information - just keep in mind copyright laws. I also have books you may borrow to help you choose that special verse.
Another way of including people in your ceremony is by having a ritual performed. If this is a second marriage and children are involved, it is a great way to make them feel part of the whole experience. Some rituals include:
The Sand Ceremony: This consists of different coloured sand being poured into the one large vessel - usually a vase that then can be displayed in the home. This ritual is perfect for couples who would like to include their children in the ceremony. Each child has a different colour sand and they alternate pouring their sand into the large vase symbolising the joining of two families.
Lighting of the Marriage Candle: Traditionally the mothers light a candle each and the spouses to be take one of the candles and light a centre candle. It symbolises the joining of two families.
The Wine Ceremony: This involves the pouring of two wines into the same cup. Usually you would use two different varieties to symbolise different challenges that you may be faced with in your married life together.
The Handfasting Ceremony: This is when the couple loosely entwine a ribbon over their hands to bind them together during the marriage ceremony. It symbolises marital unity.
Love Letter Ceremony: Couples privately write a love letter to each other and then at the ceremony place them in a box which they will lock with a key or tie ribbons around it. When it is a special anniversary they can open the box and read the letters that were written to them, remembering the vows they made to each other.