Gay/Gender Neutral Wedding Ceremonies

Word of Welcome

My name is (Officiant), and I have the privilege of performing this ceremony today. On behalf of (Partner 1) and (Partner 2), welcome and thank you for being here.

They are thrilled that you are here today to share in their joy during this wonderful moment in their lives.

By your presence, you celebrate with them the love they have discovered in each other and you support their decision to commit themselves to one another for the rest of their lives.

The greatest happiness of life is the conviction that we are loved, loved for ourselves. If there is anything better than being loved, it is loving.

This afternoon we are here to celebrate love. We come together to witness and proclaim the joining together of these two persons in marriage.

God does not make a love that is wrong. This is the union of two individuals in heart, body, mind, and spirit, Therefore, marriage is not to be entered into lightly, but reverently, honestly, and deliberately. And it is into this union that (Partner 1) and (Partner 2) come now to be joined.

Same Sex Wedding Ceremony

Word of welcome

My name is (Officiant), and I have the privilege of performing this ceremony today. On behalf of (Partner 1) and (Partner 2), welcome and thank you for being here.

They are thrilled that you are here today to share in their joy during this wonderful moment in their lives.

By your presence, you celebrate with them the love they have discovered in each other and you support their decision to commit themselves to one another for the rest of their lives.

The greatest happiness of life is the conviction that we are loved, loved for ourselves. If there is anything better than being loved, it is loving.

This afternoon we are here to celebrate love. We come together to witness and proclaim the joining together of these two persons in marriage.

God does not make a love that is wrong. This is the union of two individuals in heart, body, mind, and spirit, Therefore, marriage is not to be entered into lightly, but reverently, honestly, and deliberately. And it is into this union that (Partner 1) and (Partner 2) come now to be joined.

Reading

Now a reading that express the sense of joy and love on this occasion. It is called 'To My Friend':

I love you not only for what you are, but for what I am when I am with you. I love you not only for what you have made of yourself, but for what you are making of me. I love you because you have done more than any creed could have done to make me good, and more than any fate could have done to make me happy. You have done it without a touch, without a word, without a sign. You have done it by being yourself. Perhaps that is what being a friend means, after all.

Second a reading from the Bible written by St Paul who writes:

Love is patient and kind; love is not jealous or boastful; it is not arrogant or rude. Love does not insist on its own way; it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs, but rejoices with the truth. Love always protects, always trusts, always hopes, love never gives up... Three things remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.

The expression of intent

(Partner 1) you have chosen (Partner 2) to be your life partner. Will you love and respect him/her? Will you be honest with him/her always? Will you stand by him/her through whatever may come? (Answer: "I will")

(Partner 2) you have chosen Partner 1) to be your life partner. Will you love and respect him/her? Will you be honest with him/her always? Will you stand by him/her through what ever may come? (Answer: "I will")

And do you both promise to make the necessary adjustments in your personal lives in order that you may live in a harmonious relationship together? (Answer: "We do")

The affirmation of family and friends

Now in the spirit of joy and affirmation, I want to ask your families and friends a question. Do you, the families and friends of (Partner 1) and (Partner 2), give them your blessing and support this day, wishing them a wonderful life together? (Answer: "We do")

The exchange of vows

(Partner 1) and (Partner 2), now we come to your vows. May I remind you that saying your vows are one thing but nothing is more challenging than living them day-by-day. What you promise today must be renewed tomorrow and each day that stretches out before you. Will you now please turn and face each other and hold hands, looking at each other.

(Partner 1), please repeat after me: In the presence of (God and) our family and friends, I (Partner 1) choose you (Partner 2) to be my life partner, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, in joy and in sorrow, to love and to cherish, and to be faithful to you alone. This is my solemn vow.

Now (Partner 2), please repeat after me: In the presence of (God and) our family and friends, I (Partner 2) choose you (Partner 1) to be my life partner, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, in joy and in sorrow, to love and to cherish, and to be faithful to you alone. This is my solemn vow.

The giving and receiving of rings

May I have the rings please.

(Partner 1), I give you this ring, that you may wear it, as a symbol of the vows we have made this day. I pledge you my love, and respect, my laughter and my tears. With all that I am, I honour you.

(Partner 2), I give you this ring, that you may wear it, as a symbol of the vows we have made this day. I pledge you my love, and respect, my laughter and my tears. With all that I am, I honour you.

Affirmation of the marriage

Now may those who wear these rings live in love all their days. Now may the love, which has brought you together, continue to grow and enrich your lives. May you continue to meet with courage any problems, which may arise to challenge you. May your relationship always be one of love and trust. May the happiness you share today be with you always. And may everything you have said and done here today become a living truth in your lives.

Declaration of Marriage

(Partner 1) and (Partner 2), we have heard your promise to share your lives in marriage. We recognize and respect the covenant you have made here this day before (God and) each one of us as witnesses. Therefore in the honesty and sincerity of what you have said and done here today and by the power vested in me by the Province of Ontario, it is my honour and delight to declare you married and partners in life...for life.

You may seal your vows with a kiss.

Signing of the Marriage Register

(At this time, the wedded parties and their witnesses will sign the Official Marriage Register. This normally takes a minute or two; consider providing appropriate music during this interval.)

Introduction of the couple

It is now my personal privilege and great joy to be the first one to introduce (Partner 1) and (Partner 2) as the newly married couple. Partners in life... for life.

Please greet them warmly.

Same Sex Wedding Ceremony - Shorter

Word of welcome

Welcome to you all on this special day.

Regardless of the wonderful and loving relationship that (Partner 1) and (Partner 2) have shared to this day, today, that relationship changes. All of us know it will grow, and become stronger and better.

Indeed, during these exciting times, this day is a day of hope; A day in which (Partner 2) and (Partner 1) demonstrate their faith and love in one another.

Reading

I would now like to read a passage that I believe expresses the sense of joy and love experienced on a day such as this. It's called 'To My Friend':

I love you not only for what you are, but for what I am when I am with you. I love you not only for what you have made of yourself, but for what you are making of me. I love you because you have done more than any creed could have done to make me good, and more than any fate could have done to make me happy. You have done it without a touch, without a word, without a sign. You have done it by being yourself. Perhaps, after all, that's what being a friend means.

Expression of Intent

I now have a question for each of you.

(Partner 1), you have chosen (Partner 2) to be your life partner. Will you love and respect her/him? Will you be honest with her/him always and will you stand by her through whatever may come? (Answer: "I will")

(Partner 2), you have chosen (Partner 1) to be your life partner. Will you love and respect her/him? Will you be honest with her/him always and will you stand by her through whatever may come? (Answer: "I will")

And do you both promise to make the necessary adjustments in your personal lives in order that you may live in a harmonious relationship together? (Answer: "We do")

The Exchange of vows

(Partner 1) and (Partner 2), we now come to your vows. May I remind you that saying your vows are one thing but nothing is more challenging than living them day-by-day. What you promise today must be renewed tomorrow and each day that stretches out before you. Will you now please turn and face each other and hold hands, looking at each other.

(Partner 1), please repeat after me: In the presence of our family and friends, I (Partner 1) choose you (Partner 2) to be my life partner; To have and to hold from this day forward, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, in joy and in sorrow, to love and to cherish, and to be faithful to you alone. This is my solemn vow.

Now (Partner 2), please repeat after me: In the presence of our family and friends, I (Partner 2) choose you (Partner 1) to be my life partner; To have and to hold from this day forward, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, in joy and in sorrow, to love and to cherish, and to be faithful to you alone. This is my solemn vow.

The Giving of Rings (Optional)

May I have the rings please?

(Partner 2), I give you this ring, that you may wear it, as a symbol of the vows we have made this day. I pledge you my love and respect, my laughter and my tears. With all that I am I honour you.

(Partner 1), I give you this ring that you may wear it as a symbol of the vows we have made this day. I pledge you my love and respect, my laughter and my tears. With all that I am I honour you.

Now may those who wear these rings live in love all their days.

Declaration of Marriage

(Partner 1) and (Partner 2), we have heard your promise to share your lives in marriage. We recognize and respect the covenant you have made here this day before each of us as witnesses. Therefore in the honesty and sincerity of what you have said and done here today and by the power vested in me, by the Province of Ontario, I declare you married and partners for life.

You may seal your vows with a kiss.

Signing of the Marriage Register

(At this time, the wedded parties and their witnesses will sign the Official Marriage Register. This normally takes a minute or two; consider providing appropriate music during this interval.)

Introduction of the couple

It is now my personal privilege and great joy to be the first one to introduce (Partner 1) and (Partner 2) as the newly married couple. Partners in life... for life.

Please greet them warmly.