A little while back, I blogged about the struggle of trying to write a beautiful, cohesive, secular ceremony. And a few of you encouraged me to share my efforts. So while it’s still a (quickly solidifying) draft, I thought I’d post one of the less personal sections - the group blessing.
To me, a group blessing is both a beautiful way to acknowledge your friends and family, and a way to make an otherwise lengthy set of speeches more interesting. Plus, my family situation being what it is, my friends ARE my family.
There’s a note in the program inviting guests to participate in the simple blessing by answering “We do” to the officiant’s prompts. So it won’t be out of the blue.
Ok - critics, please be gentle:
Each of you are here today because you bring something special to the lives of M. and D. Some of you have known one or both of them for years - and some of you are meeting one of them for the very first time today. But whether you’re an old friend or a newly acquired relation, you have a special place in their hearts.Likewise, you have a special purpose. As beloved family and friends, it is you to whom they’ll turn in the coming years, whether in joy or in sorrow. It is you with whom they’ll share their happiness, and you to whom they’ll bring their pain. You will watch their marriage mature; you will watch their children grow.And when hard times come, and the loving support of friends and family is needed, M. and D. hope to be able to turn to you, just as they will turn to each other.
And so they ask that you commit to them, as they are committing to one another. That just as they pledge to support and protect the other, you pledge to support and protect their relationship, today and always.
When prompted, please answer “We do”.
They ask: Do you offer this man and woman your blessing as husband and wife? Please say, we do.
And do you offer their marriage your support, as loving friends and family? Please say, we do.
Simple enough, anyway - which is really how I want it. I find there’s so much euphemism in marriage ceremonies. My love of verbal economy reigns even in this, I guess.
I’ve also finished the chocolate and wine ritual, should anyone have any interest in how we’re working candy and alcohol into our marriage ceremony…
For my fellow ceremony/vow-writers, how’s it coming? Are you making your language formal and floral? Or more straightforward?