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Senior couple in love holding each other after wedding

Elder Wedding Ceremony Script

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  • 12 Minute Ceremony

While many marriages happen during an earlier phase of a person’s life, millions of people across the world wait to tie the knot. Whether it took many years to find the right person or there were earlier marriages that ended for one reason or another, an elder wedding is more common than many realize. If you’re a bit older and preparing to enter a new phase in your life, use this script as a template to create a fitting ceremony.


Introduction/Welcome/Wedding Sermon

Officiant (to guests):

Welcome to one and all. On behalf of ___________ and __________, I hope today finds you in joyous spirits.

Officiant (to couple):

_______________ and _______________, you are proof that love is abundant in all of us, from our earliest years until our later days. Your friends and family have come here to watch with happiness in their hearts as you join your lives together in the bonds of legal matrimony.

Reading

[There are many excellent options to consider when it comes to a reading for an elder wedding. You may want to pick a piece or poem that dates back to your youth, as this can be a wonderful way to connect the past to the present. The selection here is an excerpt from the poem “Lines Depicting Simple Happiness” by Peter Gizzi, who is known for poetry that is romantic without being overly sappy.]

Officiant (to guests):

The couple has selected a special reading that reflects the bond they share. Let us now take in the words and learn from them.

"It feels right to be up this close in tight wind

It feels right to notice all the shiny things about you

About you there is nothing I wouldn’t want to know

With you nothing is simple yet nothing is simpler."

— "Lines Depicting Simple Happiness," Peter Gizzi

Declaration of Intent

Officiant (to couple):

It is now time for _______________ and _______________ to step forward and join hands before all those gathered here today as they express their intent to take this step together. Please respond to my question with “I do” if you agree. Do you, _________________ take __________ to be your partner in lawful matrimony?

Partner 1:

I do.

Officiant (to Partner 2):

And do you, _______________, take _______________ to be your legally wedded partner?

Partner 2:

I do.

Exchanging of Vows

[Custom vows are common for people of all age groups. The idea is to craft personal statements to one another that capture the heart of your relationship and why you are about to journey into marriage together. The suggestions here are a bit more generic, so feel free to play around with the template to your liking.]

Officiant (to couple):

I now ask all gathered to listen with intent as _______________ and _______________ read the vows they have prepared for one another. Whenever you are ready, ____________, you may begin.

Partner 1:

__________, I never expected to find a love like this at this phase of my life. You are a surprise that has delighted me in ways I never thought possible, and I vow to cherish you for whatever time we are blessed with.

Officiant (to couple):

_______________, you may now read the vows you have prepared.

Partner 2:

____________, there are few words I can say that could do justice to how I feel about you in my heart and soul. You have come into my life like a welcome breeze in the summer, and I promise to honor you for all of my days.

Exchanging of Rings

Officiant (to couple):

Love, like life, has no true beginning or end. Though we both enter and leave this world alone, we do so while also surrounded by constant love. The rings exchanged during important moments like this remind us all of love’s circular, infinite nature. I now ask the rings to be brought forward so that the couple might exchange them.

________ and _________, please repeat after me and place the ring on your partner’s finger as you do. We will begin with ___________. “With this ring, I vow my commitment and my love.”

Partner 1:

“With this ring, I vow my commitment and my love.”

Officiant (to Partner 2):

Now I ask ___________ to place the ring on ____________'s finger and repeat the same. “With this ring, I vow my commitment and my love.”

Partner 2:

“With this ring, I vow my commitment and my love.”

Pronouncement

Officiant (to couple):

Now that _______________ and _______________ have stood before all and proven that they have come here of their own volition, it is my pleasure to bring this ceremony to a close. By the power that has been vested in me by the Universal Life Church Ministries, I now pronounce you married. Please share a kiss if you so desire and go in peace and prosperity!