Quintessential Guide for Wedding Vows

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Arguably the most important part of the wedding ceremony for a couple is the exchanging of vows. Here's a quick list of examples of various traditional vows and a few tips for writing your own!


Tips for Writing Your Own Vows

1. Be aware of time
Short and sweet works best to portray your feelings and commitment to each other for your audience of family and friends. Recommended time for vows would be around 2 minutes each. 

2. Look for Inspiration
Religious or secular vows such as the ones listed above serve as a great starting point when looking for inspiration writing your vows. Take notes on vows you enjoy, romantic passages in your favorite books and movies. Or even talk with family and friends to come up with ideas of what to include in your vows. 

3. Adding a little humor
If straight and narrow promises, aren't your idea of your perfect wedding vows feel free to add in a little humor. But, be aware that many of your guests won't understand inside jokes between you and you partner, so it's best to keep those types of jokes out of your official vows. 

4. Make it Personal
Committing yourself to each other is a big step and you want to show how much you adore this person in your life. Share a story or quip about each other or make your promises to each other specific to the needs of your significant other. Think about your love languages and put that love into words.

5. Give yourself some wiggle room
Start working on your vows with ample time to try out several drafts. Tips for the day of, print several copies in case your memorization skills leave much to be desired or you forget to bring your copy. 

Reciting Traditional Vows

Baptist


Officiant: Will you, ______ , have ______ to be your husband/wife? Will you love him/her, comfort and keep him/her, and forsaking all other remain true to him/her as long as you both shall live?"

Wedded couple (together or individually): I will.

Catholic


I, ______, take you, ______, for my lawful wife/husband, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and health, until death do us part.

Christian


Groom: I, ______, take you, ______, to be my wedded wife. With deepest joy, I receive you into my life that together we may be one. As is Christ to His body, the church, so I will be to you a loving and faithful husband. Always will I perform my headship over you even as Christ does over me, knowing that His Lordship is one of the holiest desires for my life. I promise you my deepest love, my fullest devotion, my tenderest care. I promise I will live first unto God rather than others or even you. I promise that I will lead our lives into a life of faith and hope in Christ Jesus. Ever honoring God's guidance by His spirit through the Word, And so throughout life, no matter what may lie ahead of us, I pledge to you my life as a loving and faithful husband.

Bride: I, ______, take you, ______, to be my wedded husband. With deepest joy, I come into my new life with you. As you have pledged to me your life and love, so I too happily give you my life, and in confidence submit myself to your headship as to the Lord. As is the church in her relationship to Christ, so I will be to you. ______, I will live first unto our God and then unto you, loving you, obeying you, caring for you and ever seeking to please you. God has prepared me for you and so I will ever strengthen, help, comfort, and encourage you. Therefore, throughout life, no matter what may be ahead of us, I pledge to you my life as an obedient and faithful wife.

Methodist


"In the name of God, I, _____, take you, _____, to be my wife/husband, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, until we are parted by death. This is my solemn vow."

Presbyterian


Officiant: ______, wilt thou have this woman/man to be thy wife/husband, and wilt thou pledge thy faith to him/her, in all love and honor, in all duty and service, in all faith and tenderness, to live with her/him, and cherish her/him, according to the ordinance of God, in the holy bond of marriage?

Wedded couple: I do.

Nondenominational


I, ______, take you, ______, to be my husband/wife. To share the good times and hard times side by side. I humbly give you my hand and my heart as a sanctuary of warmth and peace, and pledge my faith and love to you. Just as this circle is without end, my love for you is eternal. Just as it is made of incorruptible substance, my commitment to you will never fail. With this ring, I thee wed.

Lutheran

Example 1
______, our miracle lies in the path we have chosen together. I enter into this marriage with you knowing that the true magic of love is not to avoid changes, but to navigate them successfully. Let us commit until death parts us.

Example 2

I, ______, take you, ______, to be my wife/husband, and these things I promise you: I will be faithful to you and honest with you; I will respect, trust, help, and care for you; I will share my life with you; I will forgive you as we have been forgiven; and I will try with you better to understand ourselves, the world, and God; through the best and worst of what is to come, and as long as we live.


Quaker


"In the presence of God and these our friends I take thee, ______, to be my husband/wife, promising with Divine assistance to be unto thee a loving and faithful husband/wife so long as we both shall live."

Buddhist


I, _____, take you, _____, to be my husband/wife, my partner in life, and my one true love. I will cherish our friendship and love you today, tomorrow, and forever.
I will trust you and honor you, I will laugh with you and cry with you.
Through the best and the worst, Through the difficult and the easy.
Whatever may come I will always be there.
As I have given you my hand to hold
So I give you my life to keep


Jewish

While many modern couples are including vows in their ceremonies; traditionally there are no vows in a Jewish ceremony only a simple line recited when placing the ring on the bride's finger: 

"Haray at mekudeshet lee beh-taba'at zo keh-dat Moshe veh-Yisrael."

Translation: "Behold, you are consecrated to me with this ring according to the laws of Moses and Israel."


Celtic

Example 1
Ye are blood of my blood, and bone of my bone.
I give ye my body, that we two might be one.
I give ye my spirit, 'til our life shall be done.
You cannot possess me for I belong to myself
But while we both wish it, I give you that which is mine to give
You cannot command me, for I am a free person
But I shall serve you in those ways you require
and the honeycomb will taste sweeter coming from my hand.

Example 2
I, ____, in the name of the spirit of God that resides within us all, by the life that courses within my blood and the love that resides within my heart, take thee, _____, to my hand, my heart, and my spirit, to be my chosen one. To desire thee and be desired by thee, to possess thee, and be possessed by thee, without sin or shame, for naught can exist in the purity of my love for thee. I promise to love thee wholly and completely without restraint, in sickness and in health, in plenty and in poverty, in life and beyond, where we shall meet, remember, and love again. I shall not seek to change thee in any way. I shall respect thee, thy beliefs, thy people, and thy ways as I respect myself.

Spanish Language

Example 1
Yo, _____, te quiero a ti, ______, como esposa(o), y me entrego a ti, y prometo serte fiel en las alegrías y en las penas, en la salud y en la enfermedad, todos los días de mi vida.
Example 2
Yo, _____, prometo amarte, honrarte y apreciarte siempre. Prometo permanecer junto a ti en lo bueno y en lo malo. Prometo ser un esposo/a fiel y amante. Prometo ser el/la más comprensivo/a en la enfermedad y la tristeza. Prometo entregarte mi alma. Prometo ser tu compañero/a y tu mejor amigo/a. Y prometo amarte con toda mi alma y mi corazón por toda la eternidad. Por favor, acepta este anillo como símbolo de nuestro amor y de nuestra amistad. Te quiero ______.

Hindu

Couples do not exchange vows in Hindu ceremonies but include "Seven Steps" of promises to each other.

"Let us take the first step to provide for our household a nourishing and pure diet, avoiding those foods injurious to healthy living.
"Let us take the second step to develop physical, mental and spiritual powers.
"Let us take the third step to increase our wealth by righteous means and proper use.
"Let us take the fourth step to acquire knowledge, happiness, and harmony by mutual love and trust.
"Let us take the fifth step so that we are blessed with strong, virtuous and heroic children.
"Let us take the sixth step for self-restraint and longevity.
"Finally, let us take the seventh step and be true companions and remain lifelong partners by this wedlock." 

Muslim


Bride: "I, ___, offer you myself in marriage in accordance with the instructions of the Holy Quran and the Holy Prophet, peace and blessing be upon him. I pledge, in honesty and with sincerity, to be for you an obedient and faithful wife." 

Groom: "I pledge, in honesty and sincerity, to be for you a faithful and helpful husband."

Secular Vows

Example 1
Officiant: _____, do you take _____ to be your wedded wife/husband, to live together in marriage? Do you promise to love her/him, comfort her/him, honor and keep her/him for better or worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and health, and forsaking all others, be faithful only to her/him, for as long as you both shall live?

Wedded couple: I do.

Example 2

Officiant: Do you, _____, take _____ to be your wife/husband, to cherish in friendship and love today, tomorrow, and for as long as the two of you live, to trust and honor her/him, to love her/him faithfully, through the best and the worst, whatever may come, and if you should ever doubt, to remember your love for each other and the reason why you came together with her/him this day?  

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