Wedding Notebook
a resource of the Long Green Valley Church of the Brethren


1. A Christian wedding is a service of worship. Close cooperation with the pastor is important. Discuss with him parts of the service you would like to omit, include, or change. Let him have a say in the final wording of selections you write for yourselves.

2. The reason for this booklet is that your wedding may be your own statement. We would like to shift from a situation where all you say is "I do," to one where you are able to share with your friends and relatives just what this ceremony means to you. Working together on your ceremony will also help you to begin to communicate your feelings about marriage and love more fully.

3. The following pages of resources describe some of the elements of a traditional Protestant wedding. Yours does not have to include all these elements, and they do not have to follow this order. The only essential part of a wedding is the vow which you will make to each other and. Furthermore, prayer opens us to that power which we need to live in faith. Beyond these two elements, nothing else in the ceremony is a must. You are free to follow the "traditional" order (knowing that traditions change with time), or to depart from it entirely. You may use any of the writings enclosed, or you may write your own.



1. A good place to start is to ask yourself, what are the main themes and moods we want to include in our wedding? What kind of vows do we want to make to each other? Will we have one ring or a double ring ceremony and what do we want to say to each other as we exchange rings? What roles will your parents play in the service? Are you comfortable with the traditional "Giving Away" of the bride or would you rather have a different expression with parents of both bride and groom participating? In what ways will you want to thank the family and friends who have gathered? Will you want them to share in the wedding by participating in the ceremony in readings or hymns?

2. Once some of your basic ideas have been discussed between you, read over this booklet paying special attention to the description of each element in the service. Then you are ready to begin.

3. When you have written or selected your entire ceremony, meet with the pastor for a final approval. The pastor will have the ceremony typed in this form for use in your wedding.

4. The pastor will also be responsible for any short comments needed to bridge from one element to the other, for directing the rehearsal, and for seeing that you have a copy of the final product, a meaning-filled keepsake.

5. If you have a question along the way - ask it!


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2001-2012 Peter L. Haynes