Archive for the ‘Wedding Ceremony Tips’ Category

Meaningful and Personalized Wedding Vows Without a Lot of Writing

Thursday, March 3rd, 2011

Many of the engaged couples that I talk with feel obligated to write their own wedding vows and express a lack of motivation to do so — not a fun place to be. The good news is that you don’t have to spend hours trying to come up with your own words in order to have personalized and meaningful wedding vows. I suggest that you and your fiance sit down and edit a vow has already been written. There are lots of great vows out there and there is no reason that you can’t take a little bit of artistic license with one of them. Below is a four step process that I have developed for my clients.

  1. Sit down with your fiance and read through some wedding vows until you find one that comes close to fitting your personalties. I have some great examples of wedding vows on my website.
  2. Watch the short video that I created on wedding vows. It will give you some good background information on wedding vows and what they are supposed to accomplish. You can find my wedding vow video here.
  3. Read the vow through several times with your fiance and talk about what you like and don’t like about it.
  4. Now go through the vow and rewrite it. Make it your own. Keep the words you like and throwaway or edit the ones you don’t.

4 Tips for Involving Your kids in Your Wedding.

Tuesday, February 8th, 2011

When my parents married, my Dad had three children from his first marriage and my mother had one child from her first marriage. Their wedding marked two distinct and major life changing events: One, they became husband and wife. Two, they formed a blended family. After years of working with engaged couples who already have children, I have learned that it is important to honor both the formation of the marriage and the beginning of a new family during the wedding ceremony. Below, I share some of what I have learned about doing this well.

  1. The way that you choose to include your children in your wedding ceremony has the potential to help them understand the roll they are going to play in their new family.
  2. If you plan to ask your son or daughter to be the Best Man or Maid of Honor, tell them why you want them to stand at your side and make a big deal out of it. Traditionally the Best Man and Made of Honor are confidants and advisors to the bride and groom. This may not be an appropriate roll to assign to you child (especially if her or she is young). I suggest redefining the roll to make it work for your family.
  3. Your wedding vows outline the commitment you are making to your fiancé.  They mark the moment the two of you become husband and wife. I suggest allowing the wedding vows to focus on your marriage and finding another way to include your children.
  4. Many popular wedding rituals, like the lighting of the unity candle and the sand ceremony, can be modified to include your children and are a great way to mark the beginning of your new family. One of our officiants would be happy to discuss this further with you at a free consultation.

Contact one of our Bay Area Wedding Officiants to schedule a free consultation.

Secrets of Wedding Vows Revealed by San Jose Wedding Officiant

Thursday, January 13th, 2011

I find that many of the couples that I work with don’t really know what  a wedding vow is. In this short video I explain what wedding vows have traditionally meant. I don’t believe that couples have to buy into the traditional meaning; but,  I think it can help them think about what their vows will mean for them. I would love to hear any of your comments.

Wedding Readings

Tuesday, November 9th, 2010

4 tips for choosing the perfect wedding ceremony reading

  1. Start by talking with your fiance about the type of reading you are looking for. Do you want something that is romantic (perhaps a bit sappy) and poetic or an excerpt from a book that says something meaningful about marriage.
  2. Think out of the box. The lyrics to your favorite song or a passage from a book that you have read might be exactly what you are looking for.
  3. Talk to family members. Perhaps you could include a reading from one of their weddings and start a family tradition.
  4. Check out our website and look through the online library of wedding readings. It’s a great resource!

Writting your own Vows

Tuesday, November 9th, 2010

Should we write our own vows?

Three reasons to write your own wedding vows:

  1. Committing your life to the person you love in your own words adds a personal touch to the ceremony
  2. Writing about the love and commitment you have for one another is bound to lead to new discoveries about your relationship
  3. Writing will help clarify your vision of marriage

Three reasons not to write your own wedding vows:

  1. Finding the right words can be nerve-racking
  2. If your fiance is not as excited about the project as you are, problems are bound to arise
  3. There are lots of beautifully written wedding vows available that have withstood the test of time. Vows don’t have to be original in order to be personal.

One of our officiants would be glad to help you create the perfect wedding ceremony. Contact us to schedule a free appointment.

5 secrets to having kids in your wedding

Tuesday, November 9th, 2010

5 things to remember about including kids in your wedding ceremony:

  1. Kids are unpredictable. I have seen Ring Bearers freeze while walking down the isle and Flower Girls start a comedy routine during the exchange of vows. Fortunately these situations can be avoided with a little planning. Make sure that there is an adult (preferably a parent) who is ready to quickly scoop children up during any part of the ceremony if it becomes necessary.  Asking someone to handle these situations ahead of time is the key. It makes life easier for the kids, their parents and everyone involved.
  2. Plan for pictures. Nothing is cuter than kids dressed for a wedding so let’s make sure that the pictures are great. These means including the children in the wedding rehearsal and clearly letting them know where to stand so that the photographer can get a great shot. I suggest talking with the photographer ahead of time.
  3. Let the kids sit down. Flower Girls and Ring Bearers don’t have to stand through the entire ceremony. Have them sit next to their parents or a close relative in the front row after the procession is finished. At the end of the ceremony they can get up and join the processional.
  4. Don’t give the wedding rings to a child. I know their called ring bearers; but, holding onto the wedding rings is too much responsibility for most 10 year olds. Give the ring bearer inexpensive fake rings and have the best man put the real ones in his pocket. It’s a lot less stressful for everyone that way.
  5. Praise, Praise, Praise.  Children love being in weddings. It’s an experience that they remember for the rest of their lives. No matter how they do, let them know that they are great and that you are thankful for what they have done.

10 questions that will help you find the perfect officiant!

Tuesday, November 9th, 2010

I have been a San Jose Wedding Officiant since 2002. Over the past eight years prospective clients have asked me a lot of great questions. I have listed the ten best questions below. Use  them when interviewing officiants, and you are well on your way to finding the perfect person.

  1. Describe the wedding that you most enjoyed performing?
  2. How do you handle clients who have a different belief system then you?
  3. What makes a wedding ceremony personal?
  4. If you become sick or are otherwise unable to show up on our wedding day, what is your back-up plan?
  5. What specific training do you have that qualifies you do this work and do you belong to any professional associations?
  6. Are you legally authorized to perform wedding ceremonies?
  7. How early do arrive on the wedding day?
  8. What makes you a good public speaker?
  9. How do you typically dress for a wedding ceremony?
  10. How will you work  collaboratively with wedding coordinators, photographers and other wedding professionals that I hire?

If you have any great questions for officiants that you would like to share with others, please post them!

San Jose Wedding Officiant Leads Interfaith Wedding

Tuesday, November 9th, 2010

I had the privileged of co-presiding over a Christian/Muslim wedding this past weekend. The couple wanted to honor both traditions so they divided the ceremony into two segments. During the first segment the couple signed an Islamic marriage contract with an Imam. I lead the couple through the second segment, which was essentially a western style Christian ceremony.

During the signing of the marriage contract the Imam spoke directly to the couple saying, ” You have both reached the age of authority in your lives and God has granted you the right to choose your own path. You are responsible for the choices you make.” The Imam’s words point towards an often lost understanding of marriage.

Marriage has often be understood as a right of passage. The argument goes something like this: Parents have authority over a child’s life and  are charged with the responsibility of teaching him or her to become a compassionate and self-disciplined Person. Compassion and self -discipline are the characteristics of one who posses inner authority and no longer needs to be disciplined by an adult.  An adult  is ready to choose their own path — to choose a spouse.  When a couple is married they are recognizes by their community as adults and joyfully sent down the path that they have chosen.

Most of the couples that I marry have been following their path for several years and are already recognized as adults. None the less, the Imam’s words are helpful. Getting through college and finding a job does require maturity; but, I would argue that Marriage requires more — more compassion and self-discipline. I think it’s helpful to understand marriage as passing from one stage of adulthood into another even more demanding stage.

San Jose wedding Officiant Performs Wine Ceremony

Tuesday, November 9th, 2010

I had the privilege of marrying Barbara Favis and Tsou Yu Liang yesterday at the Blackhawk Country Club in Danville. It was an absolutely beautiful wedding with many many memorable moments. Barbara and Tsou Yu added a classy twist to their wedding by including a wine ceremony.

After taking vows and exchanging rings Barbra help up a glass of white wine and Tsou Yu a glass of red. I asked them to look into the glasses and consider their love and commitment to each other. The wine became a symbol of their vows. Next, the couple poured the wine from their individual glasses into a single chalice. As they drank together from the Chalice I said, “The wine you consume is a symbol of your vows. As you drink it, may your love and commitment to one another become a part of your essence. May your vows nourish your relationship as bread and wine give life to the body”.

The wine ceremony is a wonderful way to add beauty and meaning to a wedding ceremony. One of our Bay Area wedding officiants would be glad to talk with you about how to make your ceremony personal and meaningful. Feel free to contact us.

An Excellent Wedding Vow

Tuesday, November 9th, 2010

I recent married Dick and Julie at Mt Diablo State Park. It was a beautiful, simple wedding done on a Tuesday morning. It was Dick’s second marriage (his first wife died) and he wrote the following vow. I find it quite moving.

I offer you not the “Summer of my life” but the autumn, brisk and vibrant. I promise to be a companion worthy of your precious friendship. I pledge you compassion in good times and bad; encouragement in sickness and health. It is my intent that our life together includes our circle of friends and family. We will cherish the memories of our individual pasts and create our new life together. I came to this place today as a man standing alone; I walk from it by your side. Today I cross the threshold with you and enter into a new and lasting lifetime commitment. Jule, I commit myself to you as your husband. Let us grow old together and look back on life, smile and say it was one hell of a ride.

Personalize Your Wedding Ceremony by San Jose wedding Officiant

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