How To Find The Perfect Wedding Vows For You

Wedding vows are more than just words.

They’re the heart of your wedding ceremony!

The kiss. The dance. The cake. Although weddings are packed with unforgettable moments, one thing remains true– the wedding ceremony is the heart of your wedding. And, the vows you make to one another are the glorious centerpiece. As the words that tie you, your vows are the heart of everything! Plus, if you put serious thought and effort into them, they can shape your life as a married couple for the rest of your lives.

As an Interfaith Officiant, I meet brides and grooms from all faiths and backgrounds. And still, to this day, after officiating over 170 weddings, I’m breathtaken when I witness your vows. Seeing you look into each other’s eyes as you recite your sacred promise is a glimpse of the divine– it’s intimate and powerful. Sometimes the bride cries. Sometimes, it’s the groom. Many times, both are shedding tears of joy. And for good reason! This is the moment when you bind yourselves together for all time. It’s a subtle but enormous shift, from intending to marry, to marrying! Out loud, in front of your Beloved Community, you recite the significant words that express your deepest promise. This is the truth of marriage. It’s when you release your independence as an individual and begin living your life as part of a pair. You’re made anew. Together you become a unity of two unique individuals, embarking on a life journey as partners in this one endeavor: your marriage.

Traditional Vows Or Write Your Own?

Your wedding ceremony is your living love story– and your vows should unfold around your love. One way to do that is with personalized vows. I’m always touched by couples who write their own wedding vows. Their words are unlike anything else– they’re original, special and absolutely true! Plus, writing your own vows says a lot about you and the strength of your commitment. 

If you want to write your own vows, focus on what you’ve meant to each other. Dig deep and reflect on your dreams for the future. Or, take inspiration from poetry books, songs, or art and make it your own. I offer guidance and coaching for vow writing if you need help.  There’s no wrong answer when you follow your heart.

In my experience, many of the brides and grooms who write original vows, cry while they’re reciting them. It happens all the time. Somehow, when you’re baring your soul, looking into the face of your beloved, a mysterious power arrives. It comes to or through you, moving you to new depths. That’s when couples weep. And it’s not unusual for me to weep, too.

When Traditional Vows Are The Way To Go

Not into personalised vows? Don’t worry. There’s also tremendous power in using the traditional vows that millions of other couples have made. After all, you’re following a deeply established ritual– one that’s been enacted and modeled over centuries in thousands of cultures. Many couples who choose traditional vows have told me, “we’re not writers” or “I don’t know what to say.” Or, they don’t want to put more pressure on themselves than they’re already under. Planning a wedding is stressful enough!

Reciting your vows is a monumental and life-changing act; it doesn’t matter whether you’ve crafted original vows or you’re using traditional ones. There’s only one thing that’s important: the vows you choose should be deeply meaningful to both of you. And that you truly intend to keep them. This is a sacred ritual that shapes the rest of your lives together.

At the many Renewal of Vows ceremonies I design and officiate, couples have revealed that their vows have much deeper meaning and impact on their married life. Some even add new vows after 10 or 20 years of marriage! Because your living love story evolves, the vows you’re inspired to say will shift as your love deepens.

Still Not Sure Which Vows Fit You?

Here’s Some Real-World Examples:

The kiss. The dance. The cake. Although weddings are packed with unforgettable moments, one thing remains true– the wedding ceremony is the heart of your wedding. And, the vows you make to one another are the glorious centerpiece. As the words that tie you, your vows are the heart of everything! Plus, if you put serious thought and effort into them, they can shape your life as a married couple for the rest of your lives.

As an Interfaith Officiant, I meet brides and grooms from all faiths and backgrounds. And still, to this day, after officiating over 170 weddings, I’m breathtaken when I witness your vows. Seeing you look into each other’s eyes as you recite your sacred promise is a glimpse of the divine– it’s intimate and powerful. Sometimes the bride cries. Sometimes, it’s the groom. Many times, both are shedding tears of joy. And for good reason! This is the moment when you bind yourselves together for all time. It’s a subtle but enormous shift, from intending to marry, to marrying! Out loud, in front of your Beloved Community, you recite the significant words that express your deepest promise. This is the truth of marriage. It’s when you release your independence as an individual and begin living your life as part of a pair. You’re made anew. Together you become a unity of two unique individuals, embarking on a life journey as partners in this one endeavor: your marriage.

“As we grow and experience life together in all of its ups and downs, I will hold your hand, I will be your rock, I will listen to you and I will support your every endeavor.”

“I promise to live with a generous heart, to share myself completely, to give to you the gifts of trust, patience, forgiveness, loyalty and unwavering support.”

“We are stronger together than we are on our own.”

“I promise to trust you and give you the benefit of the doubt and when I’m wrong, I will promptly admit it.

“I promise to love you gently, to listen and speak kindly.  I promise to sing and dance and laugh and cry with you. I will be your partner in life, in love, in family and in old age.”

“I will allow myself to see you and to be seen by you. I will comfort and encourage you. I will be faithful to you. I will forgive you. And I will ask you to forgive me.” 

“I promise to keep our mental, emotional and physical intimacy monogamous.”

“I will listen to you with an open mind and open heart. When I struggle with frustration or doubt in our relationship, I will return to my faith in your love for me and my love for you.”

And finally, I want to give you some of the most beautiful vows I’ve ever heard. They are not from a wedding I officiated. These vows come from West Side Story, a story of star-crossed lovers which was inspired by Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet.

The two lovers, Tony and Maria, sing this heartbreaking song (heartbreaking because of their tragic ending) in the dress shop where Maria worked. On their knees, they recite their vows to each other. Then, they sing a prayer together called, One Hand, One Heart (which you can enjoy here). Notice how the vows are almost but not-quite traditional. And notice how the last line of the song changes……

And finally, I want to give you some of the most beautiful vows I’ve ever heard. They are not from a wedding I officiated. These vows come from West Side Story, a story of star-crossed lovers which was inspired by Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet.

The two lovers, Tony and Maria, sing this heartbreaking song (heartbreaking because of their tragic ending) in the dress shop where Maria worked. On their knees, they recite their vows to each other. Then, they sing a prayer together called, One Hand, One Heart (which you can enjoy here). Notice how the vows are almost but not-quite traditional. And notice how the last line of the song changes……

TONY: (Spoken) I, Anton, take thee, Maria . . .

MARIA: (Spoken) I, Maria, take thee, Anton . . .

TONY: For richer, for poorer . . .

MARIA: In sickness and in health . . .

TONY: To love and to honor . . .

MARIA: To hold and to keep . . .

TONY: From each sun to each moon . . .

MARIA: From tomorrow to tomorrow . . .

TONY: From now to forever . . .

MARIA: Till death do us part.

TONY: With this ring, I thee wed.

MARIA: With this ring, I thee wed.

TONY (Sings)

Make of our hands one hand,

Make of our hearts one heart,

Make of our vows one last vow:

Only death will part us now.

MARIA

Make of our lives one life,

Day after day, one life.

BOTH

Now it begins, now we start

One hand, one heart;

Even death won’t part us now.

Make of our lives one life,

Day after day, one life.

Now it begins, now we start

One hand, one heart,

Even death won’t part us now.

©Music by Leonard Bernstein, lyrics by Stephen Sondheim.

Create A Custom Love Story That Honors Your Beloved Community

Your sacred union is more than a wedding ceremony– it’s the heart of your wedding day! It’s a rich, magical ritual of deepening love and eternal commitment. It’s also a day where your loved ones are invited into your relationship, witnesses to the sacred vows that bind you.

If you want a wedding ceremony that’s uniquely yours– a deeply meaningful moment where you and your Beloved Community are swept up in the mysterious power of the divine, schedule a FREE wedding consultation here. We’ll bring your living love story to life. 

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