Published: Wednesday, Sep. 15th, 2021
Wedding vows are a big deal, and couples often struggle to find the right words to express their love and commitment! But writing them doesn’t have to be a challenge.
Whether you’re a wedding officiant who’s been asked to personalize a ceremony with unique vows, or newly engaged and writing your own wedding vows…
The Three Question Template is one of the simplest ways to get started.
These three questions will help you find the perfect words to describe what makes your relationship so special, so that the rest of your vows come naturally.
If you’re officiating a wedding, ask the couple to take a few minutes answering these questions as honestly as possible. They’ll be helpful even if you’re a close friend or relative who got ordained just for the occasion, and already know the soon-to-be-weds well.
Your answers are the actions and values you promise to do, give, and uphold in your marriage. That’s what marriage vows are all about!
Pro tip: Consider the tone and size of the wedding ceremony, and answer with that in mind. Your answers might be funny, or more traditional. They might be personal and very specific (for a small elopement), or more general (for a big wedding where guests don’t all know you very well).
1. What does marriage mean to you?
Love, honoring the person, trust, support, being faithful, ‘til death do us part’
2. How do you show your sweetheart that you love them?
Make her coffee in the morning, cuddle on the couch at night, give hugs on bad days, take her out to celebrate when she gets a promotion or something good happens, joke about how we’ll be even hotter when we’re old and cranky - especially her.
3. What does your sweetheart ask you for, or value most, in your relationship?
Asks me to just always be honest no matter what, to rush less and be patient, values putting in time to help our relationship grow, like with our couple’s therapy and workshops, and asks me to call when I’m late because she always worries something terrible happened.
“Alex, I promise to love, honor, trust, and stay faithful to you. To lift you up, and walk through life beside you, for as long as we live.”
(Start with your sweetheart’s name and “I promise,” then add the answer to Question 1.)
“I promise to hold you close every night, and make you coffee every morning, today and every day until we’re old and cranky and even hotter than we are today… Because there’s no one I’d rather fall asleep or wake up next to than you. I promise to comfort you when times are bad, and to celebrate and laugh with you when times are good.”
(That’s the answer to Question 2!)
“And I promise to always be honest with you, to be present and patient with you. To cherish our marriage as a safe and loving space, as you do, and to always work to help our relationship grow stronger. And I promise to always, always, call you when I’m running late, so that you never have to worry.
Alex, I love you for everything you are, exactly as you are, and I am so happy and grateful to be yours.”
(That’s the answer to Question 3, followed by a heartfelt declaration of love… Your vows are complete!)
“Alex, do you promise to love, honor, trust, and stay faithful to Toni, to begin and end each day together enjoying simple pleasures, to celebrate and comfort her through life’s ups and downs, to treat her with honesty and patience as you build a marriage that continues to grow stronger -- and to always, always call her when you’re running late?”
(This is when each partner will enthusiastically say “I do!”)
Some wedding scripts include vows you can use ‘as is’ or make unique by adding details or stories from your relationship.
Choose one from our Wedding Ceremony Script Library.
Or consider using traditional vows… They’re classics for a reason!
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