Good evening and welcome!
As we will be beginning shortly, please take a moment to not only silence all cell phones and electronic devices, but please turn them off and put them away. Our bride and groom respectfully request that you refrain from taking any photos or video during their ceremony. They have hired a wonderful team to capture this moment, and they prefer that you experience their ceremony without the distraction of technology. We thank you for honoring their request for an “unplugged” ceremony. You also know that our bride and groom are an irreverent pair, and a traditional ceremony isn’t quite their thing, so you will notice some gentle Game of Thrones theme to their celebration today, but rest assured, Walder Frey had nothing to do with the planning of this wedding, so you should all be safe.
Moment of Remembrance
Ladies and gentlemen, before we celebrate this joyous occasion today, Athena and Christopher would like you all to join with them in a moment to remember those loved ones, both family and friends, who are no longer with us. We know they are all here in spirit… in our hearts and in our memories, sharing in the love and joy of this celebration, wishing our bride and groom a lifetime of happiness.
Guests are seated.
Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today to celebrate the union of Athena and Christopher and to witness the beginning of what we know will be an extraordinary marriage. Our bride and groom have come here today because they share a commitment to nurturing the love between them, and to maintaining it as an integral part of their lives. While a wedding day is a wonderful event, it’s just one day. Marriage, on the other hand, is the journey of a lifetime. Our bride and groom loved the idea of an autumn wedding… it’s their favorite time of year, as the air has started to turn cooler, as the world around us bursts into radiant color, heralding a time of change, with something new and wonderful on the horizon.
Author George R.R. Martin, who wrote the Game of Thrones books describes love… “What is honor compared to a woman’s love? We are only human, and the gods have fashioned us for love. That is our great glory.” Today we recognize that finding the one person, out of all seven and a half billion of us here on this earth, having been sent to you by the universe to make your life sweeter and brighter… to be warmth in the cold and to love you for the parts of yourself that no one else will ever see… it is indeed worth celebrating! We begin with a blessing.
Our hearts are filled with great happiness on this wedding day of Athena and Christopher. We ask, as they pledge their hearts and their lives to one another, that blessings continue to shine upon them granting them prosperity and abundance, health and happiness, joy and peace. Temper their hearts with kindness and help them to remain sweethearts, partners, friends and guides, so that together, they may meet the cares and problems of life more bravely. May their home truly be a place of love and harmony. Bless their wedding day, and all who are gathered here in celebration.
Welcoming of Guests
(BRIDE & GROOM face their guests)
As you all know, family and friends are very important to our bride and groom. Whether you hail from House Ligouri or House Thomas, whether you came by fleet or by dragon, I’m sure that you are all happy to be here with them. Athena and Christopher wanted very much to express how deeply grateful they are to have every one of you here today, and in their lives. This last year has been a challenging one, certainly not an easy time to be planning a wedding, and today’s celebration reminds us that when the world is chaotic all around us, it’s love that remains constant, getting us through difficult times. Athena and Christopher just could not imagine taking this step without you here with them as it is your presence that makes this feel complete in their eyes.
Addressing Bride and Groom:
Today is the public affirmation and acknowledgment of all that you are to each other, supported by your family and friends. May the guidance of these people who love you bring you all the warmth and closeness, security and comfort, joy and happiness that marriage has to offer.
Declaration of Intent
To stand before all those we care for most in the world, and promise to love another person openly, trustingly, without limit or precondition, and to do this for a lifetime… this is perhaps the most meaningful thing two people will ever do. And so today, Athena and Christopher, you will take the promises that you have already made to each other in the privacy of your own hearts and take on all the honor and respect that comes with the titles of husband and wife, titles that say to the world: “This is the one person that I choose, to be my own, to hold above all others, today and for all the days of my life.” I ask you now if you are prepared to make these promises.
Athena, Have you come here today with love in your heart and of your own free will to take Christopher to be your husband, that you may live together as equal partners sharing all that life has to offer?
Athena: “I have.”
Will you love him, comfort him, honor and keep him all the days of your life?
Athena: “I will.”
Christopher, Have you come here today with love in your heart of your own free will to take Athena to be your wife, that you may live together as equal partners sharing all that life has to offer?
Christopher: “I have.”
Will you love her comfort her, honor and keep her all the days of your life?
Christopher: “I will.”
Athena and Christopher
Personal parts removed for this posting.
Over your years together you have developed a strong foundation of friendship, trust, respect and, of course, love. Your relationship is successful because you balance each other’s strengths and weaknesses, accepting and loving each other just as you are. You share similar interests and love for animals. You work together to address issues as they arise, remembering that you are always on the same team, with the priority of growing stronger as a couple.
From your beautiful beginning, you have continued putting in the work of establishing a relationship worthy of the promise of marriage. You have talked and listened, learned and grown, cared about all the silly and serious things that your days have brought, and you have put one another’s needs above your own. You have treated each other as the most important person in your lives and from today forward… all that work will be recognized, celebrated and honored every time you speak the words “my husband,” or “my wife.” To you, taking this step of marriage today is the next phase of your shared journey, taking the commitment that you already feel and making it formal… elevating your connection to one another beyond being a couple, to being family. You are truly blessed to have found one another, to have been brought together by dead animals and a little bit of fate, and to have reached this incredible milestone in your lives together.
Presentation of Rings
“May I have the rings please?
Officiant is given the rings
Wedding rings are unbroken symbols of eternity with neither end nor beginning. Each of our wedding bands holds special meaning. Athena, you will be wearing the ring that was worn by Christopher’ grandmother. And Christopher, your ring was Athena’s father’s, which didn’t even need to be re-sized. The history that these rings already hold will serve as a reminder of all the generations that have come before you, and how you have the blessing from them all as you begin your future.
Although you each wear only one of them, these rings essentially belong to you both, for they are a symbol of the love you share and the promise that it will be a strong and lasting love. Throughout the years they will speak softly of your vow to grow along with one another, to face the challenges of life, to remain one another’s first priority and to keep your relationship rich and full. They will give you strength and comfort in times of uncertainty, and will heighten life’s joys as you share them. From this day forward you will wear these rings as a sign that no matter where you go, and whatever you do, there’s someone in this world who loves you and chooses to share life with you and whether near or far, is always by your side.
Ring Vows & Handfasting
Christopher, in Athena you have found a woman who is intelligent, strong-willed and thoughtful. She is kind, with a gentle heart, often putting others’ needs before her own, whether they are two- or four-legged friends. Athena is always there for you, listening without judgment, supporting you and motivating you to be your best. She knows when you’ve had a long day, and will give you your down time to play video games or sleep in while she takes care of the household tasks and brews enough coffee to keep you both running.
There are certain things that Athena needs from you in order to ensure that you have a long and happy life together. She counts on your support, love and loyalty. Communicate with her, openly and honestly, so that you always understand each other’s thoughts and intentions. Work together on the issues, addressing and resolving them as they arise, so that they never have the opportunity to grow into resentments. Have great conversations and make the time to connect with one another. Make mindful decisions, each and every day, to nurture the connection between you so that your marriage doesn’t just survive, but truly thrives. Continue to do the things you already do, with words and with gestures both great and small that show her how much you love her.
Christopher, do you vow to fulfill these promises and do you take Athena to be your lawfully wedded wife?
Christopher: “I do.”
You may now cloak your bride and bring her under your protection.
MoH removes bride’s cloak, groom places his cloak over bride’s shoulders.
Please place this ring on Athena’s finger and repeat after me.
Christopher places the ring half way on to Athena’s ring finger
I, Christopher, take you, Athena, to be my wife.
Christopher places the ring the rest of the way on to Athena’s finger
Athena, you love Christopher’s compassionate nature and wonderful sense of humor. He is a kind soul, caring and patient; you can tell him anything and be your authentic self, knowing that he truly accepts you without judgment. Christopher knows you so well and can tell when you’ve had a challenging day just by reading your face, and he does anything he can to help you leave your cares behind.
There are certain things that Christopher needs from you in order to have a long and happy life together. He counts on your trust, honesty and unconditional support. Communicate with him, working as a united team to overcome any obstacle that life may throw in your path, growing stronger as a couple with each experience that you share. Christopher needs you to maintain the laughter, passion and friendship between you so that your relationship remains vibrant and meaningful. Continue to do the things you already do, with words and with gestures, both great and small, to show Christopher how much you love him.
Athena, do you vow to fulfill these promises and do you take Christopher to be your lawfully wedded husband?
Athena: “I do.”
Please place this ring on Christopher’s finger and repeat after me.
Athena places the ring half way on to Christopher’s ring finger
I, Athena, take you, Christopher, to be my husband.
Athena places the ring the rest of the way on to Christopher’s finger
Our bride and groom have chosen to include in their ceremony symbolic binding of the hands that inspired the terms “Bonds of Holy Matrimony” and to “Tie the knot.” In Celtic tradition, and also in Game of Thrones, the hands of the bride and groom were bound as a sign of their commitment to one another. The knot was made with material that was not permanent, but perishable as a reminder that all things of the material eventually return to the earth, unlike the bond and the connection that is love which is eternal.
Hands are bound.
Now, together, please recite the words that shall unite you as one flesh, one heart, one soul, now and forever.
Athena & Christopher:
Father, Smith, Warrior,
Mother, Maiden, Crone,
I am yours, you are mine,
From this day until the end of my days.
Pronouncement of Marriage
Christopher and Athena, my closing wish for you today is this…
That you will always remember the qualities that attracted you to each other when you first met and how you felt as your feelings of attraction turned into respect, admiration, and finally, love. That you will work hard to turn your feelings of love into acts of love so that nothing, and no one, can divide you. That you will always have kind and loving hearts that are quick to ask forgiveness when you are wrong, as well as forgive when your partner is wrong. That your love might grow to hear all things, believe all things, hope for all things and endure all things. May the challenges that life brings your way make your marriage even stronger. May you always be each other’s best friend and greatest love.
May the response to the words “I love you,” often be “I know.”
May the Force always be with you.
Christopher and Athena, you are now, as your hearts already know you to be, Husband and Wife. You may kiss the bride!
Bride and Groom kiss