- Music begins and doors open.
- Decorative candles are lit by the ushers.
- Ushers seat guests.
THE LIGHTING OF THE CANDLES
- The bride’s mother is escorted to the front for the lighting of the bride's candle (stage right), and is then seated.
- The groom’s mother is escorted to the front for the lighting of the groom’s candle (stage left), and is then seated.
- The pastor and the groom enter and take their places.
- Processional music begins.
- The bride and her father enter.
WELCOME & ADDRESS
The pastor welcomes the congregation and states of the nature and purpose of the wedding ceremony. "Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today in the sight of God…"
THE BRIDE & HER FATHER
Who presents this woman to be married to this man?
- Her father replies, "Her mother and I."
- The father seats himself.
- The pastor directs the groom to escort his bride to their places.
- The bride is assisted with her dress as necessary.
The pastor introduces himself and tells something about his personal relationship with the couple.
DECLARATION OF INTENT
GROOMNAME & BRIDENAME, you may now face one another, as I ask you to declare your intention.
GROOMNAME, will you have this woman to be your wedded wife, to live together after God's ordinance in the holy estate of matrimony?
Will you love her, comfort her, honor, and keep her in sickness and in health; and, forsaking all others, keep yourself only unto her, so long as you both shall live?
If so, please respond, "I will."
- The groom responds, "I will."
BRIDENAME, will you have this man to be your wedded husband, to live together after God's ordinance in the holy estate of matrimony?
Will you love him, comfort him, honor, and keep him in sickness and in health; and, forsaking all others, keep yourself only unto him, so long as you both shall live?
If so, please respond, "I will."
- The bride responds, "I will."
Now, let me step off to the side here to address the congregation.
As GROOMNAME & BRIDENAME's family and friends, you play an important role in their life together. So I am going to ask you to pledge your love and support to them for their marriage. I am asking you, as GROOMNAME & BRIDENAME's friends and family, to promise to support them in their marriage, to love them, and to encourage their love and commitment to one another.
If that is your intent, please respond, "We will."
- The congregation responds, "We will."
OTHER READINGS/SCRIPTURE IF DESIRED
The pastor’s message is a very brief personalized sermon on a theme selected personally for the couple.
EXCHANGE OF VOWS
OTHER MUSIC IF DESIRED
First the groom, then the bride, place the ring and repeat after the pastor along the lines of "With this ring I thee wed: with all that I am, I honor you; all that I have I share with you."
GROOMNAME & BRIDENAME, now that you have exchanged vows and rings expressing your desire and commitment to be united as one in Christian marriage, you’ll now take the two separate candles, lit by your parents, and blend them into one flame on the unity candle. By doing so, you are illustrating the truth that you are no longer two, but one.
- The groom escorts the bride to the candles.
- Each one takes his or her own candle and in unison light the unity candle.
- Once the unity candle is lit, each one extinguishes his or her own candle and places it back in its holder.
- The bride and groom return to their places.
GROOMNAME & BRIDENAME have promised to take each other as husband and wife, to live together in the holy estate of Christian marriage. They have pledged their faithfulness to one another by the vows they have taken, and exchanged rings as symbols of their love and that covenant. Therefore they now enter into that holy estate of matrimony. As a minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, I now pronounce you husband and wife.
PRESENTATION & KISS
Dearly beloved, it is my honor to present to you Mr. & Mrs. GROOMNAME LASTNAME.
GROOMNAME, you may now kiss your bride.
- Recessional music plays.
- The couple exists.
The pastor invites the congregation to the reception.