Honoring the Blended Family in Your Wedding Ceremony

Because divorce and remarriage are so prominent in American society, many couples find themselves blending ever more complex families. One or both of the engaged couple may have children from a previous relationship, and they may also have one or more children resulting from their relationship together. Couples in similar circumstances to these naturally wish to successfully blend all the parties involved into a cohesive and loving union, and they seek opportunities to show their love and devotion to their partner’s children.

It is a delicate balancing act to be inclusive without implying exclusivity-that is, to NOT imply somehow that a child’s new “official” step-parent somehow replaces their birth parent. Every situation is unique, and parents should prepare children for their new family relationship according to the specific situation at hand.

Including children in the wedding ceremony is an excellent way to cement these new relationships. It can be done by adding statements and vows from the couple that affirm their love and commitment to support one another in guiding the children, as well as assurances from the couple directly to the children. The children may also be asked to affirm that they understand, respect and accept the new union. Following is an actual ceremony that included the children of the groom as flower girl and ring bearer. These children became an integral part of the entire wedding ceremony.

Keep in mind that this non-religious ceremony is for demonstation purposes only, and every section of your wedding ceremony can be customized to your unique needs, including the addition of religious elements.

WEDDING CEREMONY FOR A BLENDED FAMILY

Opening

There is no greater gift than the love that makes two people one. To behold this love blossoming between two hearts is always a joy, and to behold the vows of lovers as they take each to the other, throughout all the changes of life, is a glorious moment of the soul. It speaks of the great conviction by which people mutually rely upon and believe in one another. In a world where faith often falls short of our expectations, it is a wonderful tribute to two people to see them joining hands and hearts in perfect faith.

Into this legacy, BRIDE and GROOM come now to be united, joined by CHILD and CHILD who are here affirming the love between them and their father, and affirming their acceptance of BRIDE into their lives as advisor, guide, and friend. By joining together in this ceremony of love, they four are saying yes to love, yes to caring, and yes to the family.

This celebration is the outward token of a sacred and inward union of hearts, which the church may bless and the state make legal, but which neither the state nor church can create or annul, for this union is created by the loving purpose and kept by the abiding will of BRIDE, GROOM, CHILD, and CHILD, as they begin life anew from this time.

Statement of Intention

GROOM, is it your desire to have BRIDE become your wife, and do you welcome her as the companion of your days? Will you honor and love her, comfort and keep her, in good times and bad, in sickness and health, all the days of your life? And will you respect and uphold her in her role as advisor, guide, and friend for CHILD and CHILD, preserving the unity of family love with all sincerity and affection?

“I will.”

BRIDE, is it your desire to have GROOM become your husband, and do you welcome him as the companion of your days? Will you honor and love him, comfort and keep him, in good times and bad, in sickness and health, all the days of your life? And will you willingly assume the role of advisor, guide, and friend for CHILD and CHILD, preserving the unity of family love with all sincerity and affection?

“I will.”

CHILD and CHILD, will you accept and respect the love that your father and BRIDE have for you and for each other?

“We will.”

May you always feel the love and safety of your home and family.

Vows

Into this perfect bond of love you have come to be joined. Please turn toward one another and join hands.

GROOM, repeat after me:

I GROOM take you BRIDE
As my friend and love
Beside me and apart from me
In laughter and in tears
In conflict and tranquility
Loving you for who you are,
Trusting what I don’t yet know
In all the ways that life may find us.

BRIDE, repeat after me:

I BRIDE take you GROOM
As my friend and love
Beside me and apart from me
In laughter and in tears
In conflict and tranquility
Loving you for who you are,
Trusting what I don’t yet know
In all the ways that life may find us.

Exchange of Rings and Gifts

BRIDE and GROOM have chosen rings to symbolize their vows, and gifts for the children to show how unending is their love.

CHILD, may I have the bride’s ring, please?

GROOM, please place your ring on BRIDE’s finger, and let it be a seal of your mutual affection and fidelity. Repeat after me:

BRIDE, I give you this ring
As a sign of my love and faith
With this ring I marry you
And join my life to yours.

CHILD, may I have the groom’s ring, please?

BRIDE, please place your ring on GROOM’s finger, and let it be a seal of your mutual affection and fidelity. Repeat after me:

GROOM, I give you this ring
As a sign of my love and faith
With this ring I marry you
And join my life to yours.

Please speak words of love and faith to your children as you present your gifts.

Sand Ceremony

GROOM, BRIDE, CHILD and CHILD will now mingle vials of sand to represent the blending of their lives into a new family. As each grain of sand has many facets, so too they each possess unique qualities-some known, some unknown. Although their lives are joining and will be blended in many ways, each of them will remain a unique individual, distinct from the others. May this blending preserve the best qualities of each member of the family, and may every new day be one of discovery as they grow together in the love and knowledge of one another.

Pronouncement

Forasmuch as GROOM and BRIDE have consented together in the bond of marriage, and have pledged their love to one another and to their children – by the joining of hands, the exchanging of rings, and the presentation of gifts-I declare that they are husband and wife, and that they are no longer two, but one, united in love.
Congratulations, you may all hug and kiss!

Please turn to face your guests.

It is my great honor to present to you, Mr. and Mrs. NAME and family!

Depart in peace.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


× two = 12