WEDDING CEREMONY #8


BRIDE and GROOM.

Today you are surrounded by your friends and family, all of whom are gathered to witness your marriage and to share in the joy of this occasion which should be one of the most memorable and happy days of your life.

Life has no singular meaning, so much as it is composed of many meaningful events, some of which can be specified and planned for, one of these events is marriage.

As you know, no priest, no rabbi, no public official can marry you. Only you can marry yourselves. By a mutual commitment to love each other, to work toward creating an atmosphere of care, consideration and respect, by a willingness to face the tension and anxieties that underline human life, you make your wedded life come alive.

On this day of your marriage, you stand somewhat apart from all other human beings. You stand within the charmed circle of your love; and this is as it should be. But, love is not meant to be the possession of two people alone.

Rather, it should serve as a source of common energy, as a form in which you find the strength to live your lives with courage. From this day forward you must be closer together than ever before, you must love one another in sickness and in health, for better and for worse, but at the same time your love should give you the strength to stand apart, to seek out your unique destinies, to make your special contributions to the world which is always a part of us and more than us.

Today, as you join yourselves in marriage, there is a vast and unknown future stretching out before you. The possibilities and potentials of your married life are great; and now falls on your shoulders the task of choosing values and making real the moral dreams that other men and women have engendered and died for. In this way, you will create the meaning of your life. If your love is vital, it will make the choosing and acting easier for you.

In traditional religions, it is customary to call down a blessing upon the bride and groom. But I know that you share with me the conviction that how two people love and treat one another and contribute to the community of men and women is more important than their formal religious beliefs. You stand before me today as two mature and thoughtful people who wish to express their emotions with the framework of a meaningful life. For your self-reliance and courage and love, you deserve respect, and it is these attributes which make this a serious but not solemn occasion.

I would like at this time to try to speak of some of the things which your friends and family wish for you. First of all, we wish for you a love that makes both of you better people, that continues to give you the joy and zest for living, that provides you with energy to face the responsibilities of life.

We wish for you a home. Not a place of stone or wood, but an island of sanity and serenity in a frenzied world. We hope that this home is not just a place of private joy and retreat, but rather serves as a temple wherein the values of your life are generated and upheld. We hope that your home stands as a symbol of people living together in love and peace, seeking truth and demanding social justice.

We hope that your home encompasses the beauty of nature, that it has within it the elements of simplicity, exuberance, beauty, silence, color and a concurrence with the rhythms of life. We wish for you a home with books, poetry and music. A home with all the things which represent the highest strivings of men and women.

We wish for you children. Children who will not be mere reflections of yourselves but will learn from you your best traits and will go forth to recreate the values you shall have instilled in them. We hope that you will stand by them when they need you and stand aside when it is time for them to seek their personal destinies.

But we hope you will pass on to your children the concept of family, not as an economic unit, but as the transcendent force which brings people closer in time of joy and in time of need.

Please join hands.

GROOM, please repeat after me. BRIDE, I want to live with you, just as you are. I choose you above all others, to share my life with me, and that is the only evidence, that can be that I love you. I want to love you for yourself, in the hope you will become, all that you can be. I promise to honor this pledge, as long as life and faith endure.

BRIDE, please repeat after me. GROOM, I want to live with you, just as you are. I choose you above all others, to share my life with me, and that is the only evidence, that can be that I love you. I want to love you for yourself, in the hope you will become, all that you can be. I promise to honor this pledge, as long as life and faith endure.

GROOM, what pledge do you offer in token of these vows? (Ring)

In offering this ring, which marks your desire to enter into the days of your life together with one another, please repeat after me; With this ring I marry you, and join my life with yours.

BRIDE, what pledge do you offer in token of these vows? (Ring)

In offering this ring, which marks your desire to enter into the days of your life together with one another, please repeat after me; With this ring I marry you, and join my life with yours.

Since BRIDE and GROOM have consented together in the bond of matrimony and have pledged themselves each to the other in the presence of these witnesses, be it thereby acknowledged that they are husband and wife.

We can derive no moral from love except the moral to love more deeply. We can expect nothing from love except what love gives. We can shape the spirit with which we shall meet them.

Thus may the love that BRIDE and GROOM have for each other, and which they feel for the rest of you, grow stronger and richer, and their marriage be fruitful.

You may kiss the bride.


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Hon. Robert J. Klabunde
Municipal Judge
Genoa City, Wisconsin