Reading – Blessing For A Marriage, by James Dillet Freeman

May your marriage bring you all the exquisite excitements a marriage should bring, and may life grant you also patience, tolerance, and understanding. May you always need one another — not so much to fill your emptiness as to help you to know your fullness. A mountain needs a valley to be complete. The valley does not make the mountain less, but more. And the valley is more a valley because it has a mountain towering over it. So let it be with you and you. May you need one another, but not out of weakness. May you want one another, but not out of lack. May you entice one another, but not compel one another. May you embrace one another, but not out encircle one another. May you succeed in all-important ways with one another, and not fail in the little graces. May you look for things to praise, often say, “I love you!” and take no notice of small faults. If you have quarrels that push you apart, may both of you hope to have good sense enough to take the first step back. May you enter into the mystery that is the awareness of one another’s presence — no more physical than spiritual, warm and near when you are side by side, and warm and near when you are in separate rooms or even distant cities. May you have happiness, and may you find it making one another happy. May you have love, and may you find it loving one another.
 

 

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Ceremony – Shell or Stone Blessing

Originally used for beach weddings by the ocean, this ceremony can also be used near any body of water such as a lake or river. As guests arrive they are asked to choose a Seashell or Stone from a basket (or you may prefer to have someone handing them out as they arrive).  This is a creative way to bring the ceremony to a close.

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Officiant: SPOUSE1 and SPOUSE2 before you met, your lives were on different paths with different destinations. But love has brought you together and joined these separate paths into one. Each of your loved ones here today has been given a small seashell that represents their presence at your wedding today, as their individual paths are also joining yours for this ceremony. When a commitment this strong is made by two people, the power of that commitment, of that love, of that courage, reaches out and touches all of us around you, so that our lives are changed and we share a part of your love. Like a seashell dropped in an ocean, the ripple of the love from this celebration extends and changes the world we live in.

I will now ask that everyone please hold the shell you have been given and pause to make a silent wish or blessing for happiness and good will for the couple and for the future of their marriage. (pause for silent blessing)

Now, please follow the couple down to the water’s edge. Once we get there, the couple will count to three. On three, we will all cast our shells into the ocean, and as the ripples touch and intertwine with one another, may our love and blessings also touch and intertwine.

(pause to get everyone to the water’s edge, then couple counts to 3 and the shells are tossed in.)

 

 

 

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Reading – Wedding Prayer – Great Plains Tribes

0 Morning Star!
When you look down upon us, give us peace and refreshing sleep.
Great Spirit!
Bless our children, friends, and visitors through a happy life.
May our trails lie straight and level before us.
Let us live to be old.
We are all your children and ask these things with good hearts.

 

 

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Ceremony – Blessing to the Four Directions – Native American Tribe Unknown

Today we call in all the powers of the 4 directions, and ask them to bless and watch over you.

May the powers of the East illuminate your path and bless you and your home with Grandfather Sun’s first light. May it be your inspiration for keeping life fresh and new.

Let the powers of the South protect the child within each of you. Always honor and trust with joy. Let laughter be your giveaway.

May the powers of the West walk with you giving you the strength to release that which no longer serves you, and the vision needed to meet all of your new goals.

The North blesses you with the wisdom of when to speak and when to listen and reminds you to be grateful for every blessing everyday, and to keep forgiveness in you heart. May your words always be sweet upon your lips.

Above the Great Star Nation reminds you; you came from the stars and to the stars you will return. We give our blessing to guard and guide you through your dreams.

The powers below bless you by keeping you grounded and on your path and reminding you to always walk softly on Mother Earth, as she is your heart beat and sustenance.

The powers within honor your hearts joy and help you be faithful to your personal growth.

Pipe to right: May you always accept our protection by walking in courage.
Pipe to left: May you receive abundance as well as nurture yourselves and others.
To Sky: May the Great Spirit watch over you as long as the grass grows, and the waters flow.

 

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Ceremony – Blessing of the Coins

Minister: (Minister takes the coins in hand.) Now we will continue with the Blessing of the Coins.  The13 coins in this ceremony represent Jesus and his 12 disciples. The coins also represent different values that the couple desires to share between themselves: love, harmony. cooperation, commitment, peace, happiness, trust, respect, caring, wisdom, joy, wholeness and nurturing. In presenting the bride with these coins, the groom symbolically recognizes his responsibility as a provider, and pledges to support and care for his wife, as well as declares his trust in her. In receiving the coins, the bride accepts that trust and confidence unconditionally with total dedication, responsibility, and prudence. In the name of our Heavenly Father, I bless these coins, knowing that they are also a symbol of the good in store for this loving couple. I accept this for Bride’s Name and Groom’s Name, and so it is, Amen.
(Pause for Minister to pour the coins into the groom’s hands.  Groom holds his hands over the Bride’s hands.)

Minister to the Groom: Groom’s Name, please repeat after me.
I, Groom’s Name, give you Bride’s Name, these coins as a symbol of the unquestionable trust and confidence I place in you as my beloved wife. As we unite our lives today I share all material responsibility with you. (Pause as groom pours coins into bride’s hands,)

Minister to the Bride: Bride’s Name, please repeat after me.
I Bride’s Name, accept these coins and assure you, Groom’s Name, of my total dedication in looking after you and your possessions and pledge my unconditional love to you.

Minister: In exchanging these coins, Bride’s Name and Groom’s Name have agreed with each  other, what is his is hers and what is hers is his. May these coins be a symbol of this couple’s mutual love, fidelity and trust.
(Pause to hand off the coins to wedding attendant.)

 

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Reading – “Apache Indian Wedding Blessing” from Broken Arrow

(Note: This was written for the 1950s Western movie Broken Arrow. There is no known connection to the traditions of the Apache or any other Native American nation.)

Now you will feel no rain
For each of you will be shelter for the other.
Now you will feel no cold,
For each of you will be warmth for the other.
Now there is no more loneliness.
Now you are two persons, but there is only one life before you.
Go now to your dwelling, to enter into the days of your life together.
And may your days be good and long upon this earth.

 

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Reading – Scottish Wedding Prayer

 

Lord help us to remember when we first met and the strong love that grew between us.

To work that love into practical things so that nothing can divide us.

We ask for words both kind and loving and hearts always ready to ask forgiveness as well as to forgive.

Dear Lord, we put our marriage into your hands.

 

 

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