Spiritual Humanist Officiant

pastor-dave.org
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Tie the Knot

with

Pastor Dave

(425) 954-KNOT (5668)
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Four Simple Ceremonies (and the No Ceremony/Vows option)

These four Ceremonies and the No Vows option may be used with the "Tie The Knot" service at our office or with "Tie the Knot and Pick Your Spot" at a location of your choice.  Minor edits are included without needing a full custom ceremony.  For example, in the 1) Traditional ceremony if you can choose "You may seal your vows with a kiss" instead of "You may kiss the bride."  or add "John and Mary have personal vows that they would pledge to one another."
  Any parts of these ceremonies may be omitted as you prefer.  If you would like a different ceremony than one of these four please add the "Custom Ceremony and Planning Meeting" option to your order.  You may use any of these ceremonies with the "Personalized Ceremony" option.

All ceremonies include an optional Tie the Knot ritual.  After the ceremony you will be able to keep the romantically colored Chord (yes, that's the correct spelling for this kind of thing) with your own Love Knot!

Note - Wedding ceremonies proceed at a rate of about 100 words per minute.  So a 1,000 word ceremony lasts about 10 minutes for the speaking portion.  If you add a processional and recessional it will be about a 15 minute event.

1)  Traditional (Also available in a gender neutral version)
About 900 words, or 9 minutes.
Good afternoon everyone.  The ceremony will begin shortly.  I am Pastor Dave Ptasnik of the Humanist Assembly and will be officiating today.  Will everyone please be seated and silence their cell phones.

[Optional]
We also ask that you enjoy and be present for this glorious occasion and refrain from taking photos and videos or using your social media accounts during the ceremony.   Thank you!

Please rise! [Bride enters] Please be seated! 

OPENING WORDS -
Officiant:
We are gathered here today before these witnesses, to join together this man and this woman in matrimony; which is an honorable and solemn estate and therefore is not to be entered into unadvisedly or lightly, but reverently and soberly. Into this estate these two persons present come now to be joined.

[Optional]
PRESENTATION OF THE BRIDE -
Officiant:
Who gives this woman to be married to this man?

Parents:
We do.
[Then the bride is given away.]

[Optional]
OBJECTION -
Officiant:
Marriage is an ancient rite.  Today we observe the union of these two people with the respect the occasion warrants.  If there is anyone in attendance who has cause to believe that this couple should not be joined in marriage, you may speak now or forever hold your peace.

[Optional]
OFFICIANT'S ADDRESS -
What we honor with reverence, however, we also celebrate with great joy! For married life – a shared life – is a tremendous boon.  Now, as (Groom’s Name) and (Bride’s Name) embark on this journey together, they will be able to nurture a love that makes each of them better versions of themselves.


(Groom’s Name) and (Bride’s Name), learn to work together, to laugh together, and to love together. Really listen to each other and be patient with each other.
  It is not expecting the husband to wear a halo or the wife to have the wings of an angel.  Always try to understand what the love of your life is feeling and thinking. Don't get caught up in worldly things that will draw you apart.  Instead, focus on your shared devotion and turn inward. As your relationship strengthens you will find that you come to share a remarkable love; a love that is both abundantly given and freely accepted. The joy you'll find as you pursue your shared lives will fuel you to face head-on the challenges you'll encounter on this Earth. On your journeys together, keep your spouse in the space of highest priority in your heart. The love you share must be guarded and cherished, it is your most valuable treasure.

[Required]
DECLARATION OF INTENT -

Officiant to Groom:
(Groom's Name), do you take (Bride's Name) for your lawful wedded wife? Will you love, honor, comfort, and cherish her from this day forward, forsaking all others, keeping only unto her for as long as you both shall live?

Groom:
I do.

Officiant to Bride:
(Bride's Name), do you take (Groom's Name) for your lawful wedded husband? Will you love, honor, comfort, and cherish him from this day forward, forsaking all others, keeping only unto him for as long as you both shall live?

Bride:
I do.

[Optional]
VOWS -
Officiant: [addressing the groom who repeats the marriage vows:]
I (Groom's Name) take thee (Bride's Name)
to be my wedded 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, honor, and cherish,
'til death do us part.

Officiant: [then to the bride who repeats the marriage vows:]
I (Bride's Name) take thee (Groom's Name)
to be my wedded husband,
to have and to hold
from this day forward,
for better for worse,
for richer for poorer,
in sickness and in health,
to love, honor, and cherish,
'til death do us part.

[Optional]
TIE THE KNOT -
Since the earliest of days in cultures across the earth, the tying of knots has been a beautiful symbol of the joining of two hearts as one. It represents the unbreakable linking of two lives, two destinies and two families. Let us celebrate as (Groom's Name) and (Bride's Name) complete this ancient rite.
[Couple ties the knot.]
And so you are joined!

[Optional]
RING EXCHANGE -
Officiant:
Who bring the rings?
[To the groom about the bride’s ring.]
(Groom's Name), may this ring represent your eternal love so he who gives it and she who wears it may abide in peace, and continue in love until life's end.  Please place the ring on her finger and state “With this ring I thee wed.”

Groom: [placing ring on bride's finger:]
With this ring I thee wed.

Officiant: [To the bride about groom's ring.]
(Bride's Name), may this ring represent your eternal love so that she who gives it and he who wears it may abide in peace, and continue in love until life's end. Please place the ring on his finger and state “With this ring I thee wed.”

Bride: [placing ring on groom's finger:]
With this ring I thee wed.

CLOSING WORDS/PRONOUNCEMENT -
Officiant:
May you both be prepared to continue to give, be able to forgive and experience more and more joy with each passing day, with each passing year. In so much as (Groom's Name) and (Bride's Name) have consented to live forever together in wedlock, and have witnessed the same before this company, having given and pledged their love and commitment, each to the other, and having declared same by the giving and receiving of a ring, in the name of Humanity, in honor of those who have come before, by the power vested in me by the State of Washington and the Humanist Assembly of Washington State, I now pronounce you Husband and Wife. 
It is with great joy that I present to the world Mr. and Mrs.…………

You may now kiss the bride.

[Optional closing announcement after the recessional, usually telling guests where to go for the reception.]

2) Minimalist (Also available in a gender neutral version)
About 300 words, or 3 minutes.

Good afternoon everyone.  The ceremony will begin shortly.  I am Pastor Dave Ptasnik of the Humanist Assembly and will be officiating today.  Will everyone please be seated and silence their cell phones.

[Optional]
We also ask that you enjoy and be present for this glorious occasion and refrain from taking photos and videos or using your social media accounts during the ceremony.   Thank you!

Please rise! [Bride enters] Please be seated! 

Officiant:

I call upon those here today to witness the wedding of (Groom’s Name) and (Bride’s Name).

DECLARATION OF INTENT -
Officiant to Groom:
(Groom's Name), do you take (Bride's Name) for your lawful wedded wife? Will you love, honor, comfort, and cherish her from this day forward, forsaking all others, for as long as you both shall live?

Groom:
I do.

Officiant to Bride:
(Bride's Name), do you take (Groom's Name) for your lawful wedded husband? Will you love, honor, comfort, and cherish him from this day forward, forsaking all others, for as long as you both shall live?

Bride:
I do.

[Optional]
TIE THE KNOT -
Officiant:
Since the earliest of days in cultures across the earth, the tying of knots has been a beautiful symbol of the joining of two hearts as one. It represents the unbreakable linking of two lives, two destinies and two families. Let us celebrate as (Groom's Name) and (Bride's Name) complete this ancient rite.
[Couple ties the knot.]
And so you are joined!"

[Optional]
Gift Exchange -
Officiant:
When a couple marries they give to each other a gift as a symbol of their everlasting love.

Officiant to Groom:
(Groom’s Name), please give your gift to (Bride’s name), and say “With this gift I marry you.”

Groom:
With this gift I marry you.

Officiant to Bride:
(Bride’s Name), please give your gift to (Groom’s name), and say “With this gift I marry you.”

Bride:
With this gift I marry you.

PRONOUNCEMENT -
Officiant:
In the name of Humanity, in the presence of this company, in honor of those who have come before, by the power vested in me by the State of Washington and the Humanist Assembly of Washington State, I now pronounce you Husband and Wife. 

You are now Mr. and Mrs.…………

You may seal your vows with a kiss.

[Optional closing announcement after the recessional, usually telling guests where to go for the reception.]

3) Gender Neutral
About 600 words, or 6 minutes.

Good afternoon everyone.  The ceremony will begin shortly.  I am Pastor Dave Ptasnik of the Humanist Assembly and will be officiating today.  Will everyone please be seated and silence their cell phones.

[Optional]
We also ask that you enjoy and be present for this glorious occasion and refrain from taking photos and videos or using your social media accounts during the ceremony.   Thank you!

Please rise! [Couple enters] Please be seated! 

Officiant:
We are gathered here today before these witnesses to join together this couple in marriage. 

[Optional]
OFFICIANT'S ADDRESS -
I read from the Book of G'Kar the Declaration of Principles
The universe speaks in many languages but only one voice.
The language is not White or Black or Yellow or Brown or Red, Gay or Straight or Trans.
It speaks in the language of hope.
It speaks in the language of trust.
It speaks in the language of strength and the language of compassion.
It is the language of the heart and the language of the soul.
But always it is the same voice.
It is the voice of our ancestors speaking through us. And the voice of our inheritors waiting to be born.
It is the small, still voice that says: "We are one." No matter the blood.
No matter the skin, No matter the world, No matter the star. We are one. No matter the pain, No matter the darkness, No matter the loss,
No matter the fear. We are one.
Here, gathered together in common cause, we agree to recognize this singular truth and this singular rule:
That we must be kind to one another.
Because each voice enriches us and ennobles us,
and each voice lost, diminishes us.
We are the voice of the universe, the soul of creation, the fire that will light the way to a better future.
We are one.

DECLARATION OF INTENT AND VOWS -
Officiant:
Marriage is a lifelong commitment and is not to be entered into lightly. I ask each of you, have you thought long and hard about the implications of spending the rest of your lives together.

Partner 1 and Partner 2 together:
I Have

Officiant:
Marriage is a contract and a promise between two individuals.  Do you commit to each other that you will honor and cherish each other, that you will be faithful and loving to each other, that you will listen to and respect each other, that you will stay with each other in sickness and in health, in wealth and adversity, for the rest of your lives?

Partner 1 and Partner 2 together:

I Will

Officiant:
Marriage is a statement to these witnesses and the world of how you feel about yourselves, each other, and your joining as a couple.  Do you swear that you are entering into this union of your own free will, that there is no reason why you should not be joined together, that the happiness of the other is essential to your own happiness, and most of all that you truly and deeply love each other for all time?

Partner 1 and Partner 2 together:
I Do

[Optional]
TIE THE KNOT -
Officiant:
Since the earliest of days in cultures across the earth, the tying of knots has been a beautiful symbol of the joining of two hearts as one. It represents the unbreakable linking of two lives, two destinies and two families. Let us celebrate as (Partner1) and (Partner2) complete this ancient rite.
[Couple ties the knot.]
And so you are joined!

[Optional]
GIFT EXCHANGE -
Officiant:
When a couple marries they give to each other a gift as a symbol of their everlasting love.  You may now exchange gifts and say “With this gift I marry you.”

Partner 1 and Partner 2 together:  [The gifts are exchanged]
With this gift I marry you.

In the name of Humanity, in the presence of this company, in honor of those who have come before, by the power vested in me by the State of Washington and the Humanist Assembly of Washington State, I now pronounce you married.

You may seal your union with a kiss.

[Optional closing announcement after the recessional, usually telling guests where to go for the reception.]

4) Contemporary (Also available in a gender neutral version)
About 900 words, or 9 minutes.

Good afternoon everyone.  The ceremony will begin shortly.  I am Pastor Dave Ptasnik of the Humanist Assembly and will be officiating today.  Will everyone please be seated and silence their cell phones.

[Optional]
We also ask that you enjoy and be present for this glorious occasion and refrain from taking photos and videos or using your social media accounts during the ceremony.   Thank you!

Please rise! [Bride enters] Please be seated! 

OPENING WORDS -

Officiant:
Welcome to this day of celebration, it's great to have all of you here to witness the union of (Groom's Name) and (Bride's Name) as husband and wife before your caring gaze. Together, we will share in the joys of their wedding, both with the outward celebration of this occasion and with an internal appreciation for the love that surrounds us.

[Optional]
PRESENTATION OF THE BRIDE -
Officiant:
Who stands with this woman to symbolize her family’s support of this union?

Escort(s):
I/We Do

[Optional]
OFFICIANT'S ADDRESS -
Officiant:
(Groom's Name) and (Bride's Name), take a moment to sense the tremendous amount of love radiating throughout this space. As you stand here today, before the Universe, before those gathered here in your honor, and before one another, take note that after you speak your vows this day your lives will never be the same. Marriage, regardless of any preconceived notions you might have, has the capacity to deepen and challenge and strengthen you and your relationship in ways that you never thought possible.

The joy you'll find as you pursue your shared lives will fuel you to face head-on the challenges you'll encounter on this Earth. On your journeys together, keep your spouse in the space of highest priority in your heart.  Learn to work together, to laugh together, and to love together. Don't get caught up in worldly things that will draw you apart. Instead, focus on your shared devotion and turn inward. As your relationship strengthens you will find that you come to share a remarkable love; a love that is both abundantly given and freely accepted.

In the words of Robert A. Heinlein - "Love is that condition in which the happiness of another person is essential to your own."

[Required]
DECLARATION OF INTENT -
Officiant:
(Groom's Name) and (Bride's Name) please join hands.
(Groom's Name), do you take (Bride's Name) to live together in the union of marriage? To take her as your best friend and partner in life? To honor, cherish, and love her, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, for all of your days?
(Groom's Name): I do.

Officiant:

(Bride's Name), do you take (Groom's Name) to live together in the union of marriage? To take him as your best friend and partner in life? To honor, cherish, and love him, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, for all of your days?
(Bride's Name): I do.

[Optional]
VOWS -
Officiant:
(Groom's Name) and (Bride's Name), I would now invite you to publicly speak your commitment to your partner.
(Groom's Name), would you like to begin?

(Groom's Name): [Groom's VOW]

Officiant:
(Bride's Name), your turn.
(Bride's Name): [Bride's VOW]

[Optional]
TIE THE KNOT -
Officiant:
Since the earliest of days in cultures across the earth, the tying of knots has been a beautiful symbol of the joining of two hearts as one. It represents the unbreakable linking of two lives, two destinies and two families. Let us celebrate as (Groom's Name) and (Bride's Name) complete this ancient rite.
[Couple ties the knot.]
And so you are joined!

[Optional]
RING EXCHANGE -
The wedding ring's circular shape reflects the unending power of love – a force with no beginning and no end. You should wear these rings proudly, and let them remind you each day of your commitment to one another.
Please repeat after me:
I, (Groom's Name), give you (Bride's Name) this ring
as a symbol of my love.
As I place it on your finger,
I commit the whole
of my heart and soul to you.
I promise to cherish you
for the rest of my days.
I give you all that I am,
and accept all that you are.

I, (Bride's Name), give you (Groom's Name) this ring
as a symbol of my love.
As I place it on your finger,
I commit the whole
of my heart and soul to you.
I promise to cherish you
for the rest of my days.
I give you all that I am,
and accept all that you are.

[Optional]
CLOSING WORDS -
Officiant:
Marriage is more than a simple exchanging of rings or combining of material assets. Rather, it is an indescribably powerful shared commitment. While today I will legally bind you together, the truly important bonds we form today are largely invisible to the world, existing primarily in the unfilled corners of your heart.

Marriage is one of life's greatest gifts, and it is a blessing to make these promises with your lifemate. As you hold onto one another, you will find deeper levels of joy, happiness and peace together. Your marriage is the foundation upon which you will build the rest of your lives and, despite any adversity, will always be there to sustain you.

PRONOUNCEMENT -
Officiant:
Family and friends, by the power vested in me by The Humanist Assembly of Washington State and by the state of Washington, I am pleased to pronounce (Groom's Name) and (Bride's Name) as husband and wife, sealed together today both in law and in love. 
It is with great joy that I present to the world for the very first time . . . . .

You may now seal your marriage with a kiss.

[Optional closing announcement after the recessional, usually telling guests where to go for the reception.]

5) The No Ceremony/Vows Option
Washington State does not require that a formal ceremony with vows be used.  All that is required is that each person is asked if they want to be married to the other person (a Declaration of Intent), and that they say that they do (in front of two witnesses and an officiant).  The officiant then pronounces them married and signs the paperwork.  Just let us know if that is what you want.




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