Alternative readings and prayers

Your ceremony should reflect what YOU want and feel. You can add your own readings, prayers or favorite lyrics, or simply choose from one of these.

Optional Readings:

Art of Marriage

The little things are the big things.
It is never being too old to hold hands.
It is remembering to say “I love you” at least once a day.

It is never going to sleep angry.
It is at no time taking the other for granted;
the courtship should not end with the honeymoon,
it should continue through all the years.

It is having a mutual sense of values and common objectives.
It is standing together facing the world.
It is forming a circle of love that gathers in the whole family.
It is doing things for each other, not in the attitude
of duty or sacrifice,
but in the spirit of joy.

It is speaking words of appreciation and demonstrating
gratitude in thoughtful ways.
It is not expecting the husband to wear a halo or the wife to have wings of an
It is not looking for perfection in each other.

It is cultivating flexibility, patience, understanding and a
sense of humor.
It is having the capacity to forgive and forget.
It is giving each other an atmosphere in
which each can grow.

It is finding room for the things of the spirit.
It is a common search for the good and
the beautiful.
It is establishing a relationship in which the independence is equal, dependence is mutual and
the obligation is reciprocal.
It is not only marrying the right partner,
it is being the right partner.

I Love You°®, by Roy Croft
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, for the part of me that you bring out.
I love you, for putting your hand into my heaped-up heart, and passing over all the foolish, weak things that you cant help dimly seeing there, and for drawing out, into the light, all the beautiful belongings that no one else had looked quite far enough to find.
I love you, because you are helping me to make of the lumber of my life, not a tavern, but a temple. Out of the works of my every day, not a reproach, but a song.
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.°®

Additional personalized passages integrating blending families or other family members can also be added.

Optional Prayers (or another one of your choice):

Christian Bible Passages:

1 Corinthians 13
If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels,
but have not love,
I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.
If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge,
and if I have a faith that can move mountains,
but have not love, I am nothing.
If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames,
but have not love, I gain nothing.
Love is patient, love is kind.
It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
It is not rude, it is not self-seeking,
it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails.

Ephesians 5:25-33 )
“Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.
“In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. After all, no one ever hated his own body, but he feeds and cares for it, just as Christ does the church- for we are members of his body.
“For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh. This is a profound mystery-but I am talking about Christ and the church. However, each one of you also must love and respect his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must love and respect her husband.

Proverbs 3:3-6
Let love and faithfulness never leave you;
bind them around your neck,
write them on the tablet of your heart.
Then you will win favor and a good name
in the sight of God and man.
Trust in the LORD with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will make your paths straight. [a]

Simple prayer:

Dear Lord,
Help Bride and Groom remember the time they first met, and the strong love that grew between them. Help them to apply that love in practical things so that nothing divides them. We humbly ask for kind words filled with love, and hearts always ready to ask forgiveness as well as to forgive.
Divine Spirit, we leave this marriage in your hands. Amen.

Through the working of Great Compassion in your hearts,
May you have happiness and cause happiness,
May you be free from sorrow and of causing sorrow;
May you never be separated from the sacred;
May you come to peace and be free of attachment,
May you be compassionate to all, and set your feet on the Path which leads from illusion and sorrow to Enlightenment and Peace.
And live honoring the beauty of all beings.

St. Francis’ Prayer

Lord, make us an instruments of your peace;
where there is hatred, let us sow love;
where there is injury, pardon:
where there is doubt, faith ;
where there is despair, hope
where there is darkness, light
where there is sadness, joy
O divine Master,
grant that we may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;
to be understood, as to understand;
to be loved, as to love;
for it is in giving that we receive,
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
and it is in dying that we are born to Eternal Life.

Harry K. Zeller, from the BRETHREN HYMNAL

And, now may the courage of the early morning’s dawning,
The strength of eternal hills and wife open fields,
The joy of silent streams and of the gentle wind,
The beauty of flowered gardens and the song of birds,
And the faith of youth be in your hearts:
And the love of God, that alone can build happiness
That makes family love flourish with the radiance of great joy,
Be with you always:
And the peace of a quiet evening’s ending
And of the midnight,
Be yours now and forever.(For Christian Ceremony you can add: Through Jesus Christ, our Lord, to whom be glory now and evermore. Amen.)