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don Miguel Ruiz

 

Custom Ceremony

For this alternative Wedding ceremony, we created a circular Wedding altar enclosed with a ring of sacred stones with each direction symbolizing the energy of a direction and an element.  The Bride and Groom entered the circle in silent prayer, visiting each direction and meeting Rebecca in the center.  At the center, we placed a ceremonial table covered in altar clothe which became the Medicine Bag for their sacred union.  Each element used in the ceremony was placed in the Medicine Bag and given to the couple as a wedding gift and a tool to empower their continued union.

OPENING PRAYER:
"With gratitude for your presence, Great Spirit, we open this circle of intent.  Connecting the heavens above and below, we open this place as a channel in service to this sacred pact of marriage.  Invoking the energies of the four directions, we form a womb in which to birth this new dream.  And within this womb, we call upon our allies of Earth, Water, Fire, Air & Ether that each may bring balance to this sacred union of masculine and feminine in body, mind and Spirit.  We also invite all the ancestors to come present here now ~ bestow the gift of your blessing upon your two children here today that they may carry within them the ancestral wisdom of your lineage…”  

WELCOME:
"Welcome.  We all have been invited here today to honor the bond of love between Heather Lieder & Lewis Timpson and to celebrate their choice to embark on this journey of marriage.  And so let us gather ourselves into this chosen moment with all of our love and presence that together we may empower the sacred intent of this marriage with our unified faith and bless the path before them with all the abundance that true love offers.  So let us all center ourselves now by closing our eyes and taking a moment of silence as we breathe into our hearts the wordless prayer of Life that accompanies us on this day."
[moment of silence]

READING:  On Friendship by Kahlil Gibran read by Divya Bolar

PERSONAL MESSAGE BY REBECCA:
“Heather and Timpson, I have had the honor of witnessing the friendship and love between you and I am affirmed in knowing that what you have created together is indeed true love.  I call your love “true”, not because you were singularly chosen for one another, but because you have chosen each other in body, mind and spirit.  Your bodies have communed in a symbiotic relationship, each feeding the other in a balanced exchange of support.  Your minds are alit with awareness, free from the illusion of separation that so often displaces love as the responsibility of other.  And your Spirits dance in the truth of love’s mystery and adventure.  It is my prayer that you each continue to support each other as clean mirrors that you may fully realize the opportunity such true love offers.”

CEREMONY:
FIRE:   “First we call upon the energy of Fire. [smudge] Cleansing and releasing the chords of your personal history, this energy will accompany you on your journey of marriage continuously purifying all that does not serve this sacred union.”
AIR:   “And now we invoke the energy of air.  [seeds]  Within this deep communion of man and woman, let there be flexibility and space – allowing the winds to pass between you, that you each may continue to receive the seeds of life’s opportunities and evolve as individuals, together."
EARTH:  “Now we raise the energy of Earth.  [stone]  This stone represents the solid earth of this union - a fertile ground for the seeds of your love to flourish.  Take this stone in your hands now and breath your intent into it that it may forever hold the energy of this union."
WATER:  “And now we bring the energy of Water. [holy water]   Though the river of life may at times seem to carry you on different paths, may you always meet at the ocean’s edge.  May this water be bountiful in your lives together, forever quenching the thirst of your seeds and cleansing your beings from the dust of each day.”  

READING:  A Love Sonnet by Pablo Neruda read by Bettina Schuler

HEART OPENING:
“You stand now, both together and apart, for it is the intermingling of your individual essences that give life to this love.  Like a child it is birthed from each of you and it will continue to grow with your individual and unified guardianship.  As each of you grow, so shall this love.  And as this love grows, so shall you.”
[place hand on your own heart and repeat after me] “I honor my heart.” 
[now place your hand on your lover’s heart]             “I honor your heart.”
[now join hands, palm to palm]                               “I honor our heart.”

VOWS:
['I Promise' written by Dorothy R. Colgan]

I promise to give you the best of myself
And to ask of you no more than you can give me.
I promise to respect you as your own person
And to realize that your interests, desires and needs
Are no less important than my own.
I promise to keep myself open to you,
To let you see through the window of my world.
I promise to grow along with you,
To be willing to face changes
In order to keep our relationship alive and exciting.
I promise to love you in good times and in bad,
With all I have to give
In the only way I know how:
Completely and forever.

EXCHANGE OF RINGS:
“Now, we invoke the cosmic energy of the ethers.  Circle of the sun and moon, send down a ray of light in this moment to cleanse and empower these rings as symbols to forever hold the intent set forth in this ceremony of marriage.”
[exchange rings]
“Heather & Timpson, with all your beloveds and all of Life as witness, do you now declare yourselves into the sacred union of marriage?” H & T: “We do”

THE KISS:
“I now joyously pronounce you Husband and Wife, let it be sealed with a kiss!

APACHE MARRIAGE BLESSING:[step forward with R]  “We now ask you to join us in this Apache Marriage Blessing, that we may send Heather and Timspon on this journey of marriage with all of our love.  Again, in this moment, we honor and invite the presence of our ancestors to bless them on their chosen path.”

READING:  Apache Marriage Blessing read by Mother of the Bride

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