Jack Crandall’s Standard Wedding Service
This was Jack’s template for hundreds of weddings conducted between 1962 and 1997. It was edited and customized to suit each couple.
LIGHTING of the CANDLES
GREETING and GATHERING
We have gathered in the presence of God our Creator to give thanks for the gift of marriage, to witness the joining together of [Insert Bride’s Name] and [Insert Groom’s Name], to surround them with our prayers, and to ask God’s blessing upon them, so that they may be strengthened, nurtured and surrounded in love and grace.
God created us male and female, and gave us marriage so that husband and wife may help and comfort each other, living faithfully together in good times and in challenging times, in joy and in sorrow, in sickness and in health, throughout all their days.
God gave us marriage for the full expression of the love between a man and a woman. In marriage a woman and a man belong to each other, and with affection and tenderness freely give themselves to each other.
In marriage, husband and wife are called to a new way of life, created, ordered, and blessed by God. This way of life must not be entered into carelessly, or from selfish motives, but responsibly, and prayerfully.
We rejoice that marriage is given by God, blessed by our Lord Jesus Christ, and sustained by the Holy Spirit. Therefore, let marriage be held in honor among all.
Gracious God, you are always faithful in your love for us. Look mercifully upon [Insert Bride’s Name] and [Insert Groom’s Name], who have come seeking your blessing. Let your Holy Spirit rest upon them so that with steadfast love they may honor the promises they make this day, through Jesus Christ our Savior. Amen.
CHARGE to the COUPLE
[Insert Bride’s Name] and [Insert Groom’s Name], I remind you, as you stand in the presence of God, that love and loyalty are the foundation of a happy and enduring home.
During the days of your engagement you have given careful thought to the meaning of marriage.
You began the joining of your lives — and we pray that you will continue to grow together throughout the time you share.
The future is unknown to any of us. Yet your love for one another and trust in the goodness of God will make possible the act of faith you now make in our midst.
As you exchange your vows of faithfulness, we will be listening and supporting you with our love.
As you make your promises to each other, we will be reminded of promises we have made and be moved to renew our own.
DECLARATION of INTENTION
I ask you now in the presence of God and these people, to declare your intention to enter into union with one another through the grace of Jesus Christ, who calls you into union with himself.
[Insert Bride’s Name], will you have [Insert Groom’s Name] to be your husband, to live together in holy marriage? Will you love him, comfort him, honor and keep him, in sickness and in health, and forsaking all others, be faithful to him as long as you both shall live? — I WILL
[Insert Groom’s Name], will you have [Insert Bride’s Name] to be your wife, to live together in holy marriage? Will you love her, comfort, honor and keep her in sickness and in health, and forsaking all others, be faithful to her as long as you both shall live? — I WILL
SCRIPTURE READING (S)
— I Corinthians 13
MINISTER’S WORDS to the COUPLE
EXCHANGE of VOWS
Since it is your desire to marry, [Insert Bride’s Name] please join your right hands and with your promises bind yourselves together as husband and wife.
I, [Insert Groom’s Name], take you, [Insert Bride’s Name], to be my wife from this day forward.
I offer you my love and support throughout our lives.
To join with you and to share all that is to come;
The happiness and joy as well as the challenges which life brings.
I promise to be faithful to you; to be open and honest with you.
I will respect, trust, help, and care for you.
I will love you and be thankful for the blessing of your love,
As long as we both shall live.
I [Insert Bride’s Name], take you, [Insert Groom’s Name], to be my husband from this day forward.
BLESSING and EXCHANGE of RINGS
These rings are the outward and visible sign of an inward and spiritual grace, signifying to us the union between Jesus Christ and his church.
Bless, O Lord, the giving of these rings that they who give them and they who receive them may live in your peace and continue in your favor all the days of their life; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
[Insert Bride’s Name], I give you this ring as a symbol of my love and faithfulness.
With all that I am and all that I have, I join in covenant with you,
In the name of God our Creator, Christ our Redeemer,
And the Holy Spirit, our Sustainer.
[Insert Groom’s Name], I give you this ring — (same text as above)
PRONOUNCEMENT of the MARRIAGE
You have declared your consent and vows before God and these witnesses. May God confirm your covenant and fill you both with grace.
Now that [Insert Bride’s Name] and [Insert Groom’s Name] have given themselves to each other by solemn vows, with the joining of hands, and the giving and receiving of rings, I announce to you that they are husband and wife; in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Those whom God has joined together, let no one put asunder. Amen.
God of Love we give thanks for the moment that brings [Insert Bride’s Name] and [Insert Groom’s Name] together in marriage. We recognize with thanksgiving the journeys that have brought them to this time, and we celebrate with them the hopes they hold for their life together. We ask your blessing upon them and pray that they may continue to find in each other resources which will nurture their marriage. May they continue to grow together and may their love for one another deepen with the passing years.
We give thanks for the nurture and support of family and friends. Let us, who share the circle of celebration today, be renewed in our own commitments to one another, that we may be participants in a healed and healing society.
All this we ask in the spirit we have seen in Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen
BENEDICTION with BLESSING
Go into the world and fulfill your lives. Hold fast to your ideals.
Give to one another new experiences of joy.
Challenge one another that you may grow.
May the love you hold for each other, now sealed in marriage, continue to mature that your life together may be a source of strength and inspiration to the community of your family and to the wider circle of the world.
INTRODUCTION of the COUPLE
Please [Insert Bride’s Name] join me in our Reception Room after the Recessional to greet this new couple, [Insert Bride’s Name] and [Insert Groom’s Name] [Insert Couple’s Last Name(s)].