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How to Include a Cord of Three Strands Ceremony in Your Wedding (With a Sample Officiant Script!)

Published Monday, Oct. 30th, 2023


Photo: madisonwi / iStock

What to say and do during a Cord of Three Strands ceremony, for Wedding Officiants and couples

 

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AMM Audio Articles · How to Include a Cord of Three Strands Ceremony in Your Wedding (With a Sample Officiant Script!)

 

 

The Cord of Three Strands Ceremony is a beautiful ritual to include in a Christian marriage ceremony. Also called a ‘Unity Braid,’ ‘Marriage Braid,’ and ‘God’s Knot,’ this powerful wedding tradition symbolizes a couple’s promise to keep their faith and love of God at the center of their marriage as they become one. 

 

Each strand in the Cord of Three Strands Ceremony holds a special meaning for Christian couples. Traditionally, the ritual is performed with one purple, one gold, and one white cord, which represent God, the groom, and the bride, respectively. Couples may choose any color they wish for their cords, however, if their intention is the same. 

 

Related: Browse Christian Wedding Ceremony Scripts in Our Library

 

The three individual strands are braided together to form one strong cord – a family united by God in holy matrimony. The cords might be affixed to a decorative display, held by a beloved family member as the couple takes turns twisting the braid into place, or held by the groom as the bride braids the strands together. 

 

This religious ritual usually follows the exchange of vows and rings. To begin the ritual, the wedding officiant will introduce the meaning of the ceremony, say a few words about its importance,  and will often read scripture from the Bible as the couple ties the braid. 

 

After the braid has been made, the wedding officiant may guide the couple and their wedding guests in prayer before making the official pronouncement of marriage. 

 

Below we’ve included a sample ceremony script for wedding officiants to use. You can use this example as-is, or modify it to suit your preferences.

 

 

Cord of Three Strands Ceremony 

Meaning: Christian marriage ritual representing the union of God, groom, and wife in the sacred covenant of marriage. 

Purple Cord: Symbolizes God, God’s love and guidance, and God’s place at the center of the marriage. 

Gold Cord: Symbolizes the Groom; his faith, love, and life

White Cord: Symbolizes the Bride; her faith, love, and life

(Note: Any colors of cord can be used in this ritual. Purple, gold, and white are common choices, but many couples choose three white cords, or other colors to match their wedding's theme or attire. Some cords may be brightly colored, and some Christian LGBTQ+ couples may choose to use multi-colored cords symbolizing unity.)

When to include the Cord of Three Strands: This unity ceremony comes after the vows and ring exchange.

Examples of different ways to arrange and display your braided cords during your wedding: 

Three examples of Cord of three strands wedding cross display

Photos & examples above are produced by Etsy sellers (left to right): Cades and BirchUnity Braids; and Bee and Bunny Designs


Sample Wedding Officiant Script
Wording for Your Cord of Three Strands Unity Ceremony 

 

Note: This script can be easily modified for same-gender and same-sex Christian couples, such as two wives or two husbands joining together in marriage. Add your favorite piece of scripture, include music or choral singing, or change any of the wording below to make this ceremony your own!

 

The marriage braid ceremony follows the couple’s exchange of wedding vows and rings. Read more about the Order of a Wedding Ceremony here.

 

See the full length wedding ceremony script here: 

 


OFFICIANT TO RECEPTION

 

__________ and __________ will now perform the Cord of Three Strands Ceremony, symbolizing the joining of man, woman, and God in lasting marriage. 

 

Why three strands? As Ecclesiastes tells us, two are stronger than one, made stronger still by Christ’s love: 

 

“Two are better than one because they have a good reward for their efforts. For if either falls, his companion can lift him up; but pity the one who falls without another to lift him up. Also, if two lie down together, they can keep warm; but how can one person alone keep warm? And if someone overpowers one person, two can resist him. A cord of three strands is not easily broken.”

 

(The couple begins to tie the braid)

 

 

OFFICIANT TO THE COUPLE

 

__________ and __________, you’ve made your vows and promises to each other. As you bind these strands, remember to lift each other up, support each other, and keep God at the center of your marriage. Let His Love be the example that unites you each day, as you learn to be good and true with each other. 

 

Ephesians 4:1-3 asks of us, “I urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.”

 

This braid symbolizes that bond. Your love is stronger when you love God first. Keep this cord in your home to remind you of the foundation God brings to your lives, first as individuals, and now united as husband and wife.

 

“Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ,” as the Bible commands.  _________, love _________ just as Christ loved the church. Ephesians tells us that Christ gave himself up for her, for the Church, to make her holy. Give yourself up to _________ and your marriage fully, honor her, and honor this covenant. And _________, love _________ with a gentle heart. Let him lead your family well as he strives to walk closely with Christ.

 

Now, let’s all take a moment to pray, in celebration of the joy and love that God has put into these two hearts, and for the happy life that lies ahead of them. 

 

(Quiet moment of prayer)

 

 

The marriage ceremony continues with a final blessing from the wedding officiant, followed by The Pronouncement.

 

 

Full wedding ceremony script here: 

 

 


 

Read Next: 

 

10 Popular Bible Verses about Marriage, Love, & Commitment

 

Christian Feet Washing Wedding Ceremony Script with Bible Reading

 

 

Groom washes brides feet during an outdoor wedding ceremony

Simple Christian wedding ceremony script with an original feet washing unity ceremony and Bible reading from John 13. Read the full script here. 

 


 

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