Protestant Wedding Ceremony Script

Usually a church will include its common order of the wedding service in its hymnal, so that’s your best resource for an individual institution’s standard. The church’s officiant, minister, or pastor can also answer your questions about variation on the service.
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Each Protestant denomination may have its own standard ceremony. Some denominations are more liberal than others in their interpretation of the service and are more open to the inclusion of non-traditional elements.

The ceremony sample presented here is adapted from The Book of Common Prayer, which traces its origins to the Church of England in the 16th century. It is merely one possible version of the Protestant marriage service.


The Introductory Prayer

The celebrant faces the couple and the congregation, the bride on his/her right and the groom on the left, and addresses all gathered:

Dearly beloved, we have come together in the presence of God to witness and bless the joining together of this man and this woman in Holy Matrimony. The bond and covenant of marriage was established by God in creation, and our Lord Jesus Christ adorned this manner of life by His presence and first miracle at the wedding in Cana of Galilee. It signifies to us the mystery of the union between Christ and His Church, and Holy Scripture commends it to be honored among all people.

The union of husband and wife is intended by God for their mutual joy; for the help and comfort given each other in prosperity and adversity; and, when it is God's will, for the procreation of children and their nurture in the knowledge and love of the Lord. Therefore marriage is not to be entered into unadvisedly or lightly, but reverently, deliberately, and in accordance with the purposes for which it was instituted by God.


The Interrogotion

Into this union (bride's name) and (groom's name) now come to be joined. If any of you can show just cause why they may not be lawfully wed, speak now, or else forever hold your peace.


Then the celebrant says to the bride and groom:

I charge you both, here in the presence of God and the witness of this company, that if either of you know any reason why you may not be married lawfully and in accordance with God's Word, do now confess it.


The celebrant says to the bride:

(Bride's name), will you have this man to be your husband; to live together with him in the covenant of marriage? Will you love him, comfort him, honor and keep him, in sickness and in health; and, forsaking all others, be faithful unto him as long as you both shall live?


The bride answers:

I will.


The celebrant says to the groom:

(Groom's name), will you have this woman to be your wife; to live together with her in the covenant of marriage? Will you love her, comfort her, honor and keep her, in sickness and in health; and, forsaking all others, be faithful unto her as long as you both shall live?


The groom answers:

I will.


The celebrant addresses the congregation, saying:

Will all of you witnessing these promises do all in your power to uphold these two persons in their marriage?


The congregation responds:

We will.


The Presentation


The celebrant:

Who gives this woman to be married to this man?



The bride's father:

She gives herself, with the blessing of her mother and father.


(A hymn, song, or reading may follow.)



The Vows


The groom faces the bride and takes her right hand in his, then says:

In the name of God, I, (groom's name), take you, (bride's name), to be my wife, 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.


They drop hands. The bride then takes his right hand in hers, then says:

In the name of God, I, (bride's name), take you, (groom's name), to be my husband, to have and to hold form 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.


They drop hands.

The Blessing and Exchange of Rings


The celebrant asks God's blessing on the ring or rings:

Bless, O Lord, these rings as a symbol of the vows by which this man and this woman have bound themselves to each other; through Jesus Christ our Lord.


All:

Amen.


The groom places the ring on the left ring-finger of the bride's hand, saying:

I give you this ring as a symbol of my love, and with all that I am, and all that I have, I honor you, in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.


The bride places the ring on the left ring-finger of the groom's hand, saying:

I give you this ring as a symbol of my love, and with all that I am, and all that I have, I honor you, in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.


Then the celebrant joins the bride's right hand and the groom's right hand, saying:

Now that (bride's name) and (groom's name) have given themselves to each other by solemn vows, with the joining of hands and the giving and receiving of rings, I pronounce that they are husband and wife, in the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit.


Those whom God has joined together, let no one put asunder.


All:

Amen.


Concluding Prayers


The celebrant directs the congregation to stand, saying:

Let us stand and pray together the words our Savior taught us.


All stand and recite the Lord's Prayer:

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy Name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen.


The celebrant then directs the congregation to sit, the couple to kneel, and the service continues with prayers or song.


The celebrant blesses the kneeling couple, saying:

God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit, bless, preserve and keep you; the Lord mercifully with his favor look upon you, and fill you with all spiritual benediction and grace; that you may faithfully live together in this life, and in the age to come have life everlasting. Amen.


The celebrant addresses all gathered:

The peace of the Lord be with you always.


All:

And also with you.


The bride and groom stand and face each other. The celebrant speaks:

(Bride's name) and (groom's name), having witnessed your vows of love to one another, it is my joy to present you to all gathered here as husband and wife. (To the groom.) You may kiss the bride.


The couple kisses and exits.

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