‘We want to say our own vows, but don’t know what to write’ is something I hear couples say when talking about their wedding ceremony. Where do you start, what do you write, and what are you supposed to say to each other? Below is some information on writing your own wedding vows.
Wedding vows are the most important part of any wedding ceremony. They are your promises, and public declaration to each other. Legal non religious vows require two simple sentences to be said in front of two witnesses.
do solemnly declare that I know not of any lawful impediment
why I, (name) may not be joined in matrimony to (name).
I call upon these persons here present, to witness that I, (name) do take thee (name) to be my lawful wedded wife /husband.
Words used in Christian marriage ceremonies are:
I, (name), take you, (name)
to be my wife/husband,
to have and to hold
from this day forward;
for better, for worse,
for richer, for poorer,
in sickness and in health,
to love and to cherish,
till death us do part,
according to God’s holy law.
In the presence of God I make this vow.
All of us are familiar with these words; said by every couple in marriage ceremonies in most parts of Britain. Do these words relate to you as a couple? Do they portray your feelings to each other; your hopes for your future lives; your relationship? If your answer is no, why would you say them on your wedding day?
Your wedding vows, made during your wedding ceremony, should be relevant to you as a couple. They should be centred on your feelings towards each other, your promises for a combined future together, and thoughts appropriate to your relationship.
In contrast to religious or civil wedding ceremonies performed by a registrar, choosing to have a Celebrant conduct your ceremony allows you to say your own vows. Celebrant wedding ceremonies are personal, bespoke and unique to each couple. A Celebrant will work with both of you, and help you create special meaningful wedding vows. This can be done together with both of you knowing what will be said, or separately to keep secret until your wedding day.
As an alternative Celebrant, I help couples write their own wedding vows which include important topics and likes from each other.
‘I promise to click ‘like’ on your Facebook statuses, and not complain about your endless selfies’
‘I vow to not pass comment or judgement on your ever increasing shoe and bag collection’
‘I will continue to support you in your quest to collect Star Wars figures, and understand how Star Wars means to you’
‘I promise to tell you the truth when you ask my opinion on new clothes; no matter what you may prefer me to say’
‘I promise not to complain when you watch the World Cup, European Championships or the Olympics games once every four years’
‘I accept your good points and your bad, your likes and dislikes, and respect your right to have your own opinions, and I ask the same of you’
If you want to write your own alternative wedding vows, think about combining different promises and subjects on things that matter to you both.
If you have nicknames for each other, use them in your vows. While your wedding ceremony should be about both of you, bear in mind rude nicknames or harsh ones which you don’t want everyone present to hear.
When starting to about write your wedding vows, first decide how you want to say them. Do you want to read them directly to your other half, or do you prefer to repeat them back? Vows can be serious, romantic, heartfelt, silly or funny. If you aren’t the kind of couple who feel comfortable declaring your personal emotions to each other, you don’t have to, but you can still say meaningful and personalised wedding vows.
‘You know how I feel about you, and I vow to continue to be by your side no matter what we may face in the future’
Perhaps you both want to say them together using the words ‘we do’ if nerves are an issue, or you are a shy couple.
‘Sarah and Ryan, together do you promise to continue to be by each other’s sides no matter what you may face in the future?’ Couple respond, ‘We do’.
Without a wedding ceremony, there isn’t a wedding day, and your vows are without doubt the most important part of the day. Make them meaningful promises, not just recited words.