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Bride’s Survival Guide: Things To Know About Wedding Vows

Whatever wedding type you decide to settle for, it will have wedding vows and a wedding dress, especially for the type you have chosen. There are millions of wedding movies out there, and during each of them, you will witness the couple reciting a bunch of words to each other, after which they kiss and are declared man and wife.

What is it that is referred to as wedding vows? And why are they always recited by couples during the wedding ceremony? And what if you decide to come up with your own wedding vows? Are you in a position to write your wedding vows?

The following are some of the wedding questions about wedding vows

Wedding vows 101

Wedding vows refer to the promises that you make to one another during a wedding ceremony. The promises tend to be different depending on religion and also from one couple to the next. It is a way of declaring a commitment that is lifelong to your spouse, witnessed by those who love you, that is, family members and close friends.

It is possible for the vows to be emotional and romantic, but at the same time, they can be humorous. They depend on the structure and style of ceremony that you embrace, determined by the officiant.

The vow usually is taken after the officiant has read their sermon or whatever religious readings that you choose to have. After the vows, you will exchange the wedding rings with the pronouncement of being married and a kiss.

You might be familiar with the catholic vows, which are mostly recited in movies. Wedding vows can be said in various ways. In case you come up with your own, you will be communicating with each other through the vows.  Another option is to repeat the vows after an officiant, alleviating the pleasure that should be derived from reciting vows.  The third option is to declare I do, to what the officiant recites, in a question and answer format.

How wedding vows differ across various cultures and religions

  • Catholics: Available are two types of American catholic vows for weddings that are approved by the Vatican. You will need to work hand in hand with your priest to find out which one is ideal for your ceremony type. If you want to host a catholic wedding, it is hard to come up with your own vows.
  • Eastern Orthodox: In most traditions of the Eastern Orthodox, during the ceremony, there are no vows. In place of spoken vows, symbolic rituals are used.
  • Jewish: In a Jewish ceremony, there is no exchange of vows as the wedding ritual is the one that presumes the promises. The vow happens when the ring is placed by the groom on his partner’s finger and then utters the words – according to the laws of Moses and Israel, you are now consecrated to me.
  • Muslim: Ceremonies held by Muslims don’t include vows. It is the couple who listen to the words of the imam concerning marriage. They are then prompted to say if they are okay with the terms of the wedding ceremony. On some occasions, Muslim couples are allowed to recite their own vows to one another.
  • Protestant: Every one of the various churches which are protestant has their own wedding ceremony vows. It doesn’t matter if you are Methodist, Episcopalian, Lutheran, or Presbyterian, there is a need to talk to your officiant to find out the vows which will be appropriate for you.
  • Unitarian: They are relatively flexible and left to the minister to decide on the exact wording to use.
  • Hindu: Sapati or seven steps is one of the most important rituals for Hindu weddings. They are promises which are made by couples to one another as they enter into married life.

Understanding the declaration of intent?

Once you have made promises to one other in the form of vows, there is a portion of the ceremony – the declaration of intent. It is especially true when you come up with your vows. The declaration of intent is a legal part of the wedding ceremony that you have to adhere to to be declared married.

The vows have made promises, but the declaration of intent follows immediately after the vows. It is that time when the couple takes each other’s hand and says the I dos. It is up to the officiant to prompt the couple, and they respond with either I will or I do. Though it is automatic, you will need to plan this part of your wedding with the officiant in advance.

Is it ideal for writing your vows?

While writing down your vows might be exciting, and a right way of ensuring that you personalize your wedding ceremony, it is not a must you go this route. Especially if you have a religious wedding ceremony where there are a strict ceremony structure and script, you might not have an opportunity to script and personalize your vows.

If you think that you must come up with your own wedding ceremony vows and yet you cannot make it part of your official wedding ceremony, you can separate them. Come up with an intimate ceremony where you will be able to declare your personalized marriage vows.

You can decide to make them with just the two of you before the sizeable official ceremony or after you are done with the official wedding.  They are promises that you are making to cherish your love for your partner for a long time, and it should not be taken lightly. You will have to abide by them for the rest of your life.

Now that you are aware of the various wedding vows and how they are administered, you can decide on which ones you want to go for. Depending on the type of wedding and location you have it, you can be bound by the existing vows, or you can have the flexibility to come up with your vows. Get what you think is going to work well for you.  For more wedding advice, check out the ultimate bride’s survival guide that has everything regarding wedding planning.


Photo by Drew Coffman

Photo by Isaiah Rustad

Photo by Jeremy Wong Weddings

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