Opening Words

“Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today to celebrate the marriage of Monica and Gary.

The ideals of love and commitment are as old and as universal as time and life itself. For if life has meaning to us at all, it possesses it because of love. Monica Gary wanted very much for their ceremony to be held outside, as nature has always inspired a connection to something larger than ourselves. In marriage we gladly accept that love is the greatest thing in our lives and that through surrendering to it, we ourselves become infinite and limitless. Yet there is the practical side of just how two people grow together within a relationship, and it is with this in mind that Monica and Gary chosen to share with you these words written by Anne Morrow Lindberg in her book “Gift From The Sea”.

‘When you love someone, you do not love them all the time, in exactly the same way, from moment to moment. It is an impossibility. It is even a lie to pretend to. And yet this is exactly what most of us demand. We have so little faith in the ebb and flow of life, of love, of relationships. We leap at the flow of the tide and resist in terror its ebb. We are afraid it will never return. We insist on permanency, on duration, on continuity; when the only continuity possible, in life as in love, is in growth, in fluidity – in freedom, in the sense that the dancers are free, barely touching as they pass, but partners in the same pattern. The only real security is not in owning or possessing, not in demanding or expecting, not in hoping, even. Security in a relationship lies neither in looking back to what was in nostalgia, nor forward to what it might be in dread or anticipation, but living in the present relationship and accepting it as it is now. Relationships must be like islands, one must accept them for what they are here and now, within their limits – islands, surrounded and interrupted by the sea, and continually visited and abandoned by the tides.’

Monica and Gary, may the promises you make this day lead to the fulfillment of your dreams and a lifetime blessed with love and laughter, with wisdom and wonder”

Welcoming of the Guests

“Our Bride and Groom would like to thank you all for taking the time and coming out on a Wednesday night to be with them. When Monica and Gary closed their eyes and thought of who means the most to them in the world and who should be here, there were no extras and no ‘almosts’; it was you they saw. They had actually considered eloping but the idea of doing this without all of you made the idea shine less brightly than it does tonight. Some family we are born into and others earn that title through their actions. You have all been there for them from the beginning, sharing your love and support, your laughter and tears. Monica and Gary see each and everyone of you a unique and irreplaceable gift that has made their life rich beyond measure of the material world.”

Sand Ceremony

“Monica and Gary, will you now step up to the altar and hold close to your heart the container of sand representing the essence of all that you are and all that you bring to this union. As you do so, embody the grains with all your hopes and dreams for the future. Bring to mind the strength of your promises, the honesty and integrity with which you make them, and all the particles of personality that make you unique and wonderful in one another’s eyes.

Bride and Groom come to behind the altar and each take their own container of sand in hand

Within a marriage each person is both their own and each others. Two individuals choosing to create a new life with endless possibilities and new dreams that are theirs together. Will you now pour the sand that is to represent the foundation of your love which is to support and nurture, your marriage and your family

Bride and Groom begin to pour their sand

And will you continue to pour bringing to mind the strength of your promises, the truth, honesty and integrity with which you make them’

Bride and Groom continue to pour their sand

Think of your hopes and dreams for the future

Bride and Groom pour the rest of their sand into the container

And please seal the vessel as a reminder that there is nothing more important nor more sacred than the bond that you share as husband wife.”

Presentation of the Rings

“May I have the rings please?”

Officiant is given the rings

“It is believed that all life came from the ocean, and that the placing of these rings will be a new life for each of you. The circle is a perfect figure without end and without beginning, water also shares many of the same qualities as the circle. It rises with heat, falls to nourish the earth and flows through our bodies. It can be as light as mist, solid as in winter, or as vast as the sea. Yet no matter what form it may take, or how far or near it is to it’s source, the nature of water always holds the promise of reunion. For water is water, and all waters are one. Let your rings remind you that like water, whether near of far, you are loved. In struggle and agreement, you are of the same flesh and that your togetherness is your destiny”.

Ring Vows

“Monica and Gary have chosen to write their own vows. Gary, will you now tell Monica what is in your heart?”

Gary speaks his heart

“Will you now place the ring on your beautiful Bride’s finger and repeat after me please?….

“All that I am, All that I do. All that I shall dream shall be ours together. I take you as my wife, my friend, my lover from this day forth and into the fullness of time, where we shall meet and remember and Love again.”

Monica, will you now tell Gary what is in your heart?”

Monica speaks her heart

“Will you now place the ring on Gary’s finger and repeat after me please?….

“All that I am, All that I do. All that I shall dream shall be ours together. I take you as my husband, my friend, my lover from this day forth and into the fullness of time, where we shall meet and remember and Love again.”

Closing Words and Pronouncement

“Monica and Gary have chosen to conclude their ceremony with “The Canticle of the Sun” written by St. Francis of Assisi

“Most high, all powerful, all good Lord!
All praise is yours, all glory, all honor, and all blessing.
To you, alone, Most High, do they belong.
No mortal lips are worthy to pronounce your name.
Be praised, my Lord, through all your creatures,
especially through my lord Brother Sun,
who brings the day; and you give light through him.
And he is beautiful and radiant in all his splendor!
Of you, Most High, he bears the likeness.
Be praised, my Lord, through Sister Moon and the stars;
in the heavens you have made them, precious and beautiful.
Be praised, my Lord, through Brothers Wind and Air,
and clouds and storms, and all the weather,
through which you give your creatures sustenance.
Be praised, My Lord, through Sister Water;
she is very useful, and humble, and precious, and pure.
Be praised, my Lord, through Brother Fire,
through whom you brighten the night.
He is beautiful and cheerful, and powerful and strong.
Be praised, my Lord, through our sister Mother Earth,
who feeds us and rules us, and produces various fruits
with colored flowers and herbs.

May you always see your selves as a vital part of one another and all life. May you nurture in one another understanding and a sense of wonder. May each day you share bring your spirits closer to oneness. And may your days be filled with happiness.

You are now as your hearts have always known you to be. Husband and Wife!

You may kiss your beautiful Bride!”