Commitment ceremony

Author: Tarnia Riggs  

The content and style of every commitment ceremony will be different and tailored to the wants and needs of each individual couple. Your ceremony can be as traditional and formal as you like, or relaxed and unstructured. You can include religious elements, favourite songs and poetry, or pagan rituals.
 
Generally speaking, a commitment ceremony may contain the following elements.
 
Welcome
The celebrant greets the guests and couple. She will probably also say a few words about commitment in general, or specifically about the couple's relationship.
 
Vows
This is the declaration by a couple of their intent to be committed to each other. They may make promises and define what that commitment means to them. The couple may choose to use existing vows for this section or to write their own. The celebrant can help with ideas and suggestions.
 
Readings/Music
Commitment ceremonies often include music, poetry or readings about love. A couple can look to famous quotes or personal writings for inspiration. It may be a great time to play the song you first danced to together or read a love letter or poem from one partner to the other.
 
Exchange of Rings
The couple may wish to exchange rings. Some words may be said about what the rings symbolize, for example: "I give you this ring as an expression of my love and commitment to you" "This ring symbolizes the wholeness of our union" "I'm pleased to give you this ring as a symbol of the promises I've made to you today and a public statement to the world that I love only you."
 
The couple may wish to say something else at this stage or not exchange rings at all. As was mentioned before, the ceremony's contents are a personal choice.

Proclamation of Commitment
The celebrant announces to the guests that the couple is now united, and invites the couple to kiss.