Sample Interfaith Ceremonies and Rituals

December 1, 2009 - 7:40 pm 5 Comments

A Sample of Interfaith Wedding Resources:

Hands Ceremony

Please face each other and hold hands …
so you may feel the gift that you are to one another…

These are the hands of your best friend, young and strong and full of love for you, that are holding yours on your wedding day, as you promise to love each other today, tomorrow, and forever.
These are the hands that will work alongside yours, as together you build your future. These are the hands that will passionately love you and cherish you through the years, and with the slightest touch, will comfort you like no other.
These are the hands that will hold you when fear or grief fills your mind. These are the hands that will countless times wipe the tears from your eyes; tears of sorrow, and tears of joy.

These are the hands that will tenderly hold your children.
These are the hands that will help you to hold your family as one.
These are the hands that will give you strength when you need it.

And lastly, these are the hands that even when wrinkled and aged, will still be reaching for yours, still giving you the same unspoken tenderness with just a touch.

For A Winecup Ceremony

Clergy: I offer you this cup, filled with wine as you first act of nurturing and caring for each other as husband and wife. Throughout the generations of humanity, wine has come to symbolize inspiration and joy- a sharing in the one love that unites us and that gives us both hope and peace. Wine is an expression of the process of life, it can be both bitter and sweet, and in its experience, we taste more of life than if it were only of one consistency or flavor. Wine, then, is the liquid of love, the flow and the taste of life we give to one another.

Groom (he receives the cup from the minister…)
_____________, take this cup that I offer you, it is the wine of my heart, it is rich, deep with flavor, and will soothe your thirst for a lifelong companion…

Bride: ( receives the cup from the groom…)

_____________________, In giving and receiving, I offer you this cup as the flow of life and love that connects us, and the quenches any loneliness, now and forever.

For a Candle Lighting Ceremony ( One Candle)

Clergy: Light has always represented life, spirit, and hope. This candle symbolizes the light that can be shared by two people who love. In lighting this wedding or unity candle, ______________and__________________ , express the merging of two lives as one, the connection of two hearts and souls into a shared future.

Groom: In lighting this light with you, I give myself to you… for me, this light signifies a friendship that has caught fire…

Bride: In lighting this light with you, I give myself to you… for me,
this light signifies a friendship that has caught fire…

The Lighting of The Unity Candle (using 3 Candles)

Sand Ceremony (short version)

Today, this relationship is further symbolized through the act of pouring from two containers of sand… One represents ________( Bride)
All that you are, and all that you will ever be…
The second container, represents ____________( Groom) all that you are and all that you will ever be…
As these two containers of sand are poured into the new third container, the is created a dynamic and gracious blending of the two individuals, and their life stories, who now become a new combined creation, never to be separated into their old selves, be together, intertwined and interlaced as your marriage shall ever be…

Sand Ceremony (including parents)

Earlier, when the mother s came in, they brought with them two distinct colored containers of sand… These containers symbolize the family that the bride and groom have come from, and will always value… It represents their heritage, the legacy of parental caring, and all the formative lessons about life and love that they shared…
Now, in being married, ________ and _______, will mix their lives , their past, their family traditions, and all that they were, into a new container- this vessel will mark the beginning of a new family. This family will represent all the good of the past, and all the potentials and blessings they will share throughout the married lives together…

Grits Ceremony: ( Adapted from the more common Sand Ceremony)

When this ceremony began, you might have seen the mothers carrying three containers… In a special homage to a South, and with a more organic twist !), the two colored containers have white and yellow grits in them… These two colors symbolize the heritage and legacy of their respective families, their individuality, and their roots of family and branches of their belonging… The third, that was empty, will be used now, as Charissa and Dave, will take some of their family and individual grits and pour them into the new vessel- the one that they will swirl and it will blend their past and their personalities to freely form the basis and a new pattern of life that will grow and will create a new family, from this day onward…

Saptapadi (Hindu)

Clergy: Now that you have proclaimed before God and loved ones your intentions, and have given each other a ring as a symbol of your commitment, I ask you now to write these promises in the earth, and to encircle them upon your hearts, that you might always be reminded of the words spoken here tonight. …

As the Moon circles the Earth to give us the months and tides of life, and the light of the night, as the Sun circles the solar system to give to those months the seasons of light, and the daily life for our souls, so do these two people now encircle one another linking hands and touching hearts…

Knowing that as the times, the circumstances, and the seasons of our lives together will change, what remains constant is their heartfelt love for each other.

Sample Lasso Rituals

The Lasso ceremony
Prayer- please pick one of the two prayers listed but definitely speak the first paragraph. You can mix and match because we like elements of both:
The Lasso Ceremony, ________ ( relatives or friends) will loop the figure eight.

The Bride and Groom kneel before the minister.

Minister: _________ and _________ have chosen to incorporate the Lasso ritual into their wedding ceremony today. The Lasso is a wedding ritual in which the couple are bound together with a ceremonial rosary. Lassoing is a declaration of intent, where the bride and groom clearly state that they are marrying of their own free will.

_________ and _________ since your lives have crossed in this life, you have formed eternal and sacred bonds. As you enter this state of matrimony you should strive to make real the ideals that to you, give meaning to this ceremony and to the institution of marriage.

With full awareness, know that within this Lasso you are not only declaring your intent to be bound together before your friends and family, but you speak that intent also to God.
The promises made today and the ties that are bound here greatly strengthen your union and will cross the years and lives of each soul’s growth.

_________ and _________, I ask you to hold hands and look into each others eyes.

Will you honor and respect one another, and seek to never break that honor?

Will you share each other’s pain and seek to ease it?

Will you share the burdens of each so that your spirits may grow in this union?

Will you share each other’s laughter, and look for the brightness in life and the positive in each other?

Bride & Groom: We will.

Minister drapes the Lasso in the form of an “8” around the shoulders of the Bride and Groom.

Minister: _________ and _________ , as you are bound together now, so too your lives and spirits are joined in a union of everlasting love and trust. Above you are the stars and below you is the earth. Like the stars your love should be a constant source of light, and like the earth, a firm foundation from which to grow.

Minister offers a prayer, removes the Lasso before the Bride and Groom rise, then presents the Lasso to the Groom who will later give it to the Bride. (The Bride will carry her bouquet as they walk together down the aisle).
• • •

The Lasso Prayer #1

Bless the marriage of _________ and _________, O God, as they begin their journey down the road of life together. We know not what lies ahead for the road has many turns and bends. We are grateful to you for helping them to make the best of whatever comes their way.

We are thankful that they can continue to enjoy each other as they did when they first met and for helping them to realize that nothing nor no one is perfect and to look for the good in all things and all people including themselves.

Thank you for helping them to respect each other’s likes and dislikes, opinions and beliefs, hopes and dreams and fears even though they may not always understand them.

Thank you for helping them to learn from each other and to help each other to grow mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.

Thank you for helping them to realize that no matter what happens to them they will hold on to each other and know that things have a way of working out for the good.

Thank you for helping them to create for their children a peaceful, stable home of love as a foundation on which they can build their lives.

But most of all, dear God, thank you for helping them to keep lit the flame of love’ that they now share so that by their loving example they may pass on the light of love to their children and to their children’s children forever and ever.

And so it is.
• • •

The Lasso Prayer #2

Father in heaven, You ordained marriage for your children, and You gave us love. We present to You _________ and _________, who come this day to be married. May the covenant of love they make be blessed with true devotion and spiritual commitment.

We thank you for giving them the strength and courage to keep the covenant they have made.

Thank you for helping them to create for their children a peaceful, stable home of love as a foundation on which they can build their lives.

When selfishness shows itself, grant generosity;

When mistrust is a temptation, give moral strength;

When there is misunderstanding, give patience and gentleness;

When suffering becomes a part of their lives, give them a strong faith and an abiding love.

And so it is.

Closing Prayer and Declaration of Marriage

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