Readings and Blessings for Weddings

Author is given where known

A Celtic blessing
Author unknown

May the road rise to meet you,
May the wind be always at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
The rains fall soft upon your fields.
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the palm of his hand.

May God be with you and bless you;
May you see your children's children.
May you be poor in misfortune,
Rich in blessings,
May you know nothing but happiness
From this day forward.

May the road rise to meet you
May the wind be always at your back
May the warm rays of sun fall upon your home
And may the hand of a friend always be near.

May green be the grass you walk on,
May blue be the skies above you,
May pure be the joys that surround you,
May true be the hearts that love you.

A Walled Garden                            
Author Unknown

Your marriage should have within it a secret and protected space, open to you alone.  Imagine it to be a walled garden, entered by a door to which you only hold the key.  Within this garden you will cease to be a mother, father, employee, homemaker or any other of the roles which you fulfil in daily life.  Here you can be yourselves, two people who love each other.  Here you can concentrate on one another’s needs.  So take each other’s hands and go forth to your garden.  The time you spend together is not wasted but invested – invested in your future and nurture of your love.

Adapted from Far from the Madding Crowd Thomas Hardy

We are all on our own paths, all on our own journeys.Sometimes the paths cross, and people arrive at the crossing points at the same time and meet each other.
There are greetings, pleasantries are exchanged, and then they move on.But then once in a while the pleasantries become more, friendship grows, deeper links are made, hands are joined and love flies.The friendship has turned into love.Paths are joined, one path with two people walking it, both going in the same direction, and sharing each other’s journeys.Today N and N are joining their paths.They will now skip together in harmony and love, sharing joys and sorrows, hopes and fears, strengthening and upholding each other as they walk along side by side.At home by the fire, whenever I look up, there you will be. And whenever you look up, there I shall be.

From The Prophet
Kahlil Gibran

Love has no other desire but to fulfill itself.
But if you love and must needs have desires, let these be your desires:
To melt and be like a running brook that sings its melody to the night.
To know the pain of too much tenderness.
To be wounded by your own understanding of love;
And to bleed willingly and joyfully.
To wake at dawn with a winged heart and give thanks for another day of loving;
To rest at the noon hour and meditate love's ecstasy;
To return home at eventide with gratitude;
And then to sleep with a prayer for the beloved in your heart and a song of praise on your lips

I am Love
Author Unknown

Some say I can fly on the wind, yet I haven’t any wings. Some have found me floating on the open sea, yet I cannot swim. Some have felt my warmth on cold nights, yet I have no flame. And though you cannot see me, I lay between two lovers at the hearth of fireplaces. I am the twinkle in your child’s eyes. I am hidden in the lines of your mother's face. I am your father's shield as he guards your home. And yet… Some say I am stronger than steel, yet I am as fragile as a tear. Some have never searched for me, yet I am around them always. Some say I die with loss, yet I am endless. And though you cannot hear me, I dance on the laughter of children. I am woven into the whispers of passion. I am in the blessings of grandmothers. I embrace the cries of newborn babies. And yet… Some say I am a flower, yet I am also the seed. Some have little faith in me, yet I will always believe in them. Some say I cannot cure the ill, yet I nourish the soul. And though you cannot touch me, I am the gentle hand of the kind. I am the fingertips that caress your cheek at night. I am the hug of a child. I am Love

I Love You This Much
Author Unknown

I love you this much 
Enough to do anything for you, give my life, my love, 
my heart and my soul to you and for you.
Enough to willingly give all of my time, efforts, thoughts, talents, trust and prayers to you.
Enough to want to protect you, care for you, guide you, hold you, comfort you, listen to you, and cry to you and with you.
Enough to be completely comfortable with you, act silly around you,
never have to hide anything from you, and be myself with you.
I love you enough to share all of my sentiments, dreams, goals, fears, hopes, and worries, my entire life with you.
Enough to want the best for you, to wish for your successes,
and to hope for the fulfilment of all your endeavours.
Enough to keep my promises to you
and pledge my loyalty and faithfulness to you.
Enough to cherish your friendship, adore your personality, respect your values and see you for who you are.
I love you enough to fight for you, 
compromise for you, and sacrifice myself for you if need be.
Enough to miss you incredibly when
we're apart, no matter what length
Enough to believe in our relationship, to stand by it through the worst of times,
to have faith in our strength as a couple, and to never give up on us.
Enough to spend the rest of my life with you,
be there for you when you need or want me,
and never, ever want to leave you or live without you.
I love you this much.

Love is
Tessa Wilkinson

Love is ...
to wait with anticipation for the key in the door
to walk down the street with fingers entwined
to laugh until the tears pour down your cheeks
to stand together in awe and wonder when something beautiful is shared
to journey with a spirit of expectation
to rise above exhaustion
to always give that little bit more
to always forgive and start again
to know total togetherness and at the same time total freedom
Love flies, love runs, love leaps for joy
Love lights a dark place
Love welcomes
Love transforms
Those who love are richly blessed 

May love
Tessa Wilkinson 

May love ...
surround you both
hold you on your journey
be the welcome at your door
be at the centre of your home and family
be between you and all whom you meet.
Go well, with love in your hearts
and at the centre of all you do.
And may the blessing of God Almighty,
Father, Son and Holy Spirit be upon you both
today and always. Amen.

On Marriage
From The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran

Then Almitra spoke again and said, And what of Marriage, master?
And he answered saying:
You were born together, and together you shall be for evermore.
You shall be together when the white wings of death scatter your days.
Aye, you shall be together even in the silent memory of God.
But let there be spaces in your togetherness.
And let the winds of the heavens dance between you.
Love one another, but make not a bond of love:
Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls.
Fill each other’s cup but drink not from one cup.
Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf.
Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone,
Even as the strings of a lute are alone though they quiver with the same music.
Give your hearts, but not into each other’s keeping.
For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts.
And stand together yet not too near together:
For the pillars of the temple stand apart,
And the oak tree and cypress grow not in each other’s shadow. 

Sonnet 116
William Shakespeare 

Let me not to the marriage of true minds
admit impediments. Love is not love
which alters when it alteration finds,
or bends with the remover to remove:
Oh, no! It is an ever-fixed mark.
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
it is the star to every wandering bark,
whose worth's unknown, although his height be taken.
Love's not Time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
within his bending sickle's compass come;
love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
but bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved.

The Blessing of the Apaches
Author Unknown

Now you will feel no rain
For each of you will be shelter to the other
Now you will feel no cold
For each of you will be warmth to the other
Now there is no more loneliness for you
For each of you will be companion to the other
Now you are two bodies
But there is only one life before you
Go now to your dwelling place
To enter into the days of your togetherness
And may your days be good, and long, upon the earth

The Most Wonderful of all Things
Hugh Walpole Sr. 

The most wonderful of all things in life, I believe, is the discovery of another human being with whom one’s relationship has a growing depth, beauty, and joy as the years increase.  This inner progressiveness of love between two human beings is a most marvellous thing; it cannot be found by looking for it or by passionately wishing for it.  It is a sort of divine accident, and the most wonderful of all things in life.

The Passionate Shepherd to His Love
Christopher Marlowe

Come live with me, and be my love,
And we will all the pleasures prove
That valleys, groves, hills and fields,
Woods, or steepy mountain yields.

And we will sit upon the rocks,
Seeing the shepherds feed their flocks
By shallow rivers, to whose falls
Melodious birds sing madrigals.

And I will make thee beds of roses,
And a thousand fragrant posies,
A cap of flowers, and a kirtle,
Embroidered all with leaves of myrtle.

A gown made of the finest wool
Which from our pretty lambs we pull,
Fair lined slippers for the cold,
With buckles of the purest gold.

A belt of straw and ivy buds,
With coral clasps and amber studs,
And if these pleasures may thee move,
Come live with me, and be my love.

The shepherds’ swains shall dance and sing
For thy delight each May-morning;
If these delights thy mind may move,
Then live with me, and be my love. 

This Day I Married My Best Friend
Author Unknown

This day I married my best friend:

the one I laugh with as we share life's wondrous zest,
as we find new enjoyments and experience all that's best;

the one I live for because the world seems brighter,
as our happy times are better and our burdens feel much lighter;

the one I love with every fibre of my soul.
We used to feel vaguely incomplete, now together we are whole.

True Love
Author Unknown

True love is a sacred flame
That burns eternaly,
And none can dim its special glow
Or change its destiny.
True love speaks in tender tones
And hears with gentle ear,
True love gives with open heart
And true love conquers fear.
True love makes no harsh demands
It neither rules nor binds,
And true love holds with gentle hands
The hearts that it entwines.

Two Doves
Author Unknown

Two doves meeting in the sky
Two loves hand in hand eye to eye
Two parts of a loving whole
Two hearts and a single soul

Two stars shining big and bright
Two fires bringing warmth and light
Two songs played in perfect tune
Two flowers growing into bloom

Two doves gliding in the air
Two loves free without a care
Two parts of a loving whole
Two hearts and a single soul

Wedding Prayer
Robert Lewis Stevenson 

Lord, behold our family here assembled. 
We thank you for this place in which we dwell, 
for the love that unites us, 
for the peace accorded us this day, 
for the hope with which we expect the morrow, 
for the health, the work, the food, 
and the bright skies that make our lives delightful; 
for our friends in all parts of the earth. 
Amen.

What Is Love
Author Unknown

Sooner or later we begin to understand that love is more than verses on valentines and romance in the movies. We begin to know that love is here and now, real and true, the most important thing in our lives. For love is the creator of our favourite memories and the foundation of our fondest dreams. Love is a promise that is always kept, a fortune that can never be spent, a seed that can flourish in even the most unlikely of places. And this radiance that never fades, this mysterious and magical joy, is the greatest treasure of all - one known only by those who love.

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