Are wedding vows really important?

By Krissy Christensen, Christchurch Wedding Celebrant

A wedding is what you say.

I love a good wedding with great vows.

No offence to the fabulous make up artists and hair stylists, dress makers, cake creators, florists and  and venue operators, but you can’t get married without having a celebrant hear your vows.

Being a celebrant is more than just ‘standing up front’ for a few minutes to hear the vows.  It is about coaching the couple through the significance and importance of the ceremony, from the music choices, the readings, or not, the significance of their rings to them (if that is their choice) and who is holding them,  and suggesting ways to use symbolism and significant others in their ceremony.

Most importantly, it is understanding all that has to be said in their vows.   Every couple needs, by law, to say their name and that they take each other to be; husband/wife/partner/husband/husband/wife/wife…in life, in front of 2 witnesses.  That is a wedding.  But we choose to make it a beautiful moment, so unless it is registry vows, that are one line and not much more, then I encourage them to write their own vows, to put them into their own words.  Many get stuck.  And that is where I come in.

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I ask them to imagine that they are repeating their vows in  30 or 50 years time. Do they still want to be promising to let them watch their programme on TV, and put the toilet seat down? Or do they want to promise to the person they cherish the most that they are there to encourage and love them through the rich and fun moments and those with more challenge?  Do they want to promise to always be honest and loyal and their constant companion, while allowing them to have their individuality?  Do they want to be promising that they will show their love in the little ways that keep the relationship alive? Do they want to use words like kind and caring, fun and adventure?

The vows I hear are fabulous.  They honour the other persons strengths,  and their own. They are grateful and hopeful.  They choose to read them off cards, or memorize, or repeat after me.  It is not how they are said, it is what they say.  I love a great wedding with great vows.

If you’d like Krissy to guide you through writing your vows, get it touch with her to find out more about her celebrant services.

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