I want to start out by giving our officiant, our friend Guy, a huge shout-out. He worked very hard to write our beautiful ceremony and it was perfect.
Now I’m just going to let the ceremony words do the talking. It’s going to be quite a bit of text, so if you don’t want to read it, just scroll through the pictures.
Welcome, family and friends. We have come here today to celebrate the wedding of Jennifer and Randall.
On behalf of Randy and Jenn, thank you for joining us. They are delighted that you have come to share in their joy on this special day.
As family and friends you form a community of support that surrounds Randy and Jenn. Always stand beside them, never between them. Offer them your love and your support, not your judgment. Encourage them when encouragement is needed, and listen to them when they ask for advice. With these actions, you honor the marriage they have come to begin today.
Do you offer your love and support, and bless the family created by this union? Please answer by saying : WE DO
[Guests: WE DO]
Thank you, you may be seated.
Marriage is a bond to be entered into only after considerable thought and reflection. Today, Jenn and Randy demonstrate their devotion to each other by dedicating themselves to a life together, and they show their respect for each other by setting forth to honor the vows they have created. Today their lives, which began on separate paths, will be joined as one.
Randy and Jenn have each asked someone special to speak about love and marriage.
First we will hear from Jenn’s uncle, Chuck. Chuck will you please step forward?
Song of the Open Road – Walt Whitman
I do not offer the old smooth prizes,
But offer rough new prizes,
These are the days that must happen to you:
You shall not heap up what is called riches,
You shall scatter with lavish hand all that you earn or achieve.
However sweet the laid-up stores,
However convenient the dwellings,
You shall not remain there.
However sheltered the port,
And however calm the waters,
You shall not anchor there.
However welcome the hospitality that welcomes you
You are permitted to receive it but a little while
Afoot and lighthearted, take to the open road,
Healthy, free, the world before you,
The long brown path before you,
leading wherever you choose.
Say only to one another:
Camerado, I give you my hand!
I give you my love, more precious than money,
I give you myself before preaching or law:
Will you give me yourself?
Will you come travel with me?
Shall we stick by each other as long as we live?
Thank you Chuck. Next we will hear from Randy’s friend Jamie. Jamie, will you please come forward?
I would like to start by saying thank you to Randy and Jenn for the honor of being here and thank you to all of you for hearing this reading on their most precious day. And to quote a wise man some of you might know , I invite you all to ”Stay a while and listen.”
Every day is precious; but some more than others. Some days are of paramount importance. This is one of those days.
If life is about anything at all, it is about connections. Daily connections; yearly connections; lifelong connections. We meet countless people in our lives. People we love, people we hate, and of course, people we are indifferent to. I personally believe that only once are we able to make “the” connection. The most important, most intense and most wonderful connection with that one person we most need to. The person that some call “the love of a lifetime.” That word is often used to lightly and used in relationships that don’t warrant it. This is not one of those times.
Knowing my friend Randy the way I do, I can say that I believe he and Jenn have found that one important, lasting and needed connection. True love. Not cliché, not romantic infatuation. Real, honest-to-goodness love. The kind of love you can wrap yourself in like a blanket on a cold morning. The kind you can see in each others’ eyes every day. The kind you can hear in each other’s voicea. The kind that penetrates even the darkest of days. One that will outlast and outshine all others. The kind you never want to lose.
On this great day, we should all celebrate that Randy and Jenn have found each other in the endless sea of passing souls. They can be themselves, and love the other more for it. And that is special. Magical. Always be true to yourselves and each other.
Thank you Jamie for your reading.
Randy and Jenn will now read the vows that express their feelings of love and commitment to each other.
Not only for what you are,
But for what I am
when I am with you.
I love you,
Not only for what
You have made of yourself,
but for what
you are making of me.
I love you
for the part of me
that you bring out;
I love you
for putting your hand
into my heaped-up heart
and passing over
all the foolish, weak things
that you can’t help
dimly seeing there,
and for drawing out
into the light
all the beautiful belongings
that no one else had looked
quite far enough to find.
I love you because you
are helping me to make
of the lumber of my life
not a tavern
but a temple.
Out of the works
of my every day
not a reproach
But a song.
I love you
because you have done
more than any creed
could have done
to make me good.
And more than any fate
could have done
to make me happy.
You have done it
without a touch,
without a word,
without a sign.
You have done it
by being yourself.
(I said the same thing so I won’t repeat it in text here. And we cheated, as you can see, by reading our vows. We didn’t want to stress ourselves out with memorizing vows on our special day.)
For thousands of years, lovers have exchanged rings as a token of their vows. Let these rings be a sign that love has a past, a present, and a future.
Randy, take Jenn’s ring and place it on her finger and repeat after me:
Jenn, take Randy’s ring and place it on his finger and repeat after me:
Stay tuned for part 2 of our ceremony!
*All photos taken by Nathan Russell
- Texas Twosome: The Week Before We Get Hitched!
- Texas Twosome: The Day Before We Got Hitched!
- Texas Twosome: The Girls Get Their Hair Done!
- Texas Twosome: We Set Up!
- Texas Twosome: The Men Get All Handsome!
- Texas Twosome: I Become a Bride!
- Texas Twosome: Our First Look!
- Texas Twosome: Just the Two of Us!
- Texas Twosome: We Walk!