We have come together here in celebration of the joining together of Groom and Bride.
There are many things to say about marriage. Much wisdom concerning the joining together of two souls, has come our way through all paths of belief, and from many cultures. With each union, more knowledge is gained and more wisdom gathered. Though we are unable to give all this knowledge to these two, who stand before us, we can hope to leave with them the knowledge of love and its strengths and the anticipation of the wisdom that comes with time. The law of life is love unto all beings. Without love, life is nothing, without love, death has no redemption.
The promises made today and the ties that are bound here greatly strengthen your union; they will cross the years and lives of each soul's growth.
Marriage is a bond to be entered into only after considerable thought and reflection. As with any aspect of life, it has its cycles, its ups and its downs, its trials and its triumphs. With full understanding of this, Groom and Bride have come here today to be joined as one in marriage.
Do you still seek to enter this ceremony?
[BRIDE & GROOM] Yes, We Seek to Enter.
[officiant] Others would ask, at this time, who gives the Bride in marriage, but, as a woman is not property to be bought and sold, given and taken, I ask simply if she comes of her own will and if she has her family's blessing.
Bride, is it true that you come of your own free will and accord?
[Bride] Yes, it is true.
[officiant] With whom do you come and whose blessings accompany you.
[Bride’s FATHER] She comes with me, her father, and is accompanied by all of her family's blessings.
[officiant] In times past it was believed that the human soul shared characteristics with all things divine. It is this belief which assigned virtues to the cardinal directions; North, South, East and West. It is in this tradition that a blessing is offered in support of this ceremony.
"I am north, the symbol of earth. Know and remember that this is the element of law, of endurance, of the understanding which can not be shaken. I bring to your wedding the power of steadfastness."
"I am East, the symbol of Air. Know and remember that this is the element of life, of intelligence, of the inspiration that moves us onward. I bring to your wedding the power of mind."
"I am South, the symbol of fire. Know and remember that this is the element of light, of energy, of the vigor which runs through our veins. I bring to your wedding the power of will.”
"I am west, the symbol of water. Know and remember that this is the power of love, of growth, of the fruitfulness of the earth. I bring to your wedding the power of desire."
[officiant] Each of these blessings from the four cardinal directions emphasizes those things which will help you build a happy and successful union. Yet they are only tools. Tools which you must use together in order to create what you seek in this union.
(As you look into each others eyes)
[officiant] Groom, Will you cause her pain?
[Groom] I May
[officiant] Is that your intent?
[officiant] Bride, Will you cause him pain?
[Bride] I may
[officiant] Is that your intent?
[officiant] *To Both*
Will you share each other's pain and seek to ease it?
[Groom & Bride] Yes
[officiant] And so the binding is made. Join your hands
*First cord is draped across the Bride and Grooms hands
**Please contact me for the rest of this ceremony
Handfasting at one time was the only way couples could be engaged and/or get married because the church let the civil government of the period take care of these matters. The term itself comes from the custom of shaking hands over a contract. "Handfasting" refers to the hands being bound together with a cord as part of the ritual. This is where the terms "tie the knot" or "the ties that bind" come from.
Mitch Cohen 954.854.2050 firstname.lastname@example.org PO BOX 1023 Deerfield Beach, FL 33443