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Officiants: Ask to Review a Couple’s Written Vows Before the Wedding Ceremony

Published Thursday, Mar. 24th, 2022

A tip for officiating weddings with written vows...



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AMM Audio Articles · Officiants: Ask to Review a Couple’s Written Vows Before the Wedding Ceremony




Today, we’re offering a friendly PSA for all new or first-time wedding officiants, and any professionals looking to improve their working relationships with couples: 


Ask to review a couple’s written wedding vows before the ceremony. 


Why? Reviewing each partner’s vows will help prevent an awkward mis-match in length or tone, and ensure the vow exchange and ceremony as a whole goes smoothly. 



Let us explain…


Many times, couples write their wedding vows privately, in order to keep them as a surprise for their partner on the wedding day. (So sweet!) 


The drawback here is that there’s no way for the partners to know if they’ve approached their vows in the same way – especially in terms of length and tone – which can lead to a very awkward exchange of vows.


For example, imagine one partner’s vows take them a full 5 minutes to read, while the second partner delivers theirs in under a minute? This would feel awkwardly uneven to most guests (and probably to the couple themselves, too).


Or, imagine that one partner cracks jokes the whole time, telling one embarrassing story after the next, while the second partner has written a deeply moving and heartfelt love poem? 


Although these examples might be accurate reflections of the couple’s personalities, they don’t make for the smoothest ceremony experience! 


That’s where you come in to save the day. 




A couple’s written wedding vows should be: 

- Similar in length
- Similar or compatible in tone
- Authentic to each partner’s personality and style 


As the wedding officiant, you can help prevent this awkward mis-match of length or tone by offering to read (or listen) to each partner’s personalized wedding vows separately – before the ceremony. 


Keep in mind that the couple’s vows don’t have to ‘match,’ but they should feel compatible. 


Then, offer feedback as needed to make the vow complimentary to ensure a smooth ceremony! 



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