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AMM FREE CEREMONY SCRIPTS LIBRARY

Over 123 free sample ceremony scripts to use for your ceremony. We have wedding ceremony scripts, handfasting scripts, non-religious ceremonies, and more!

Catholic Inspired LGBTQ+ Inclusive Wedding Ceremony Script

A modern Catholic wedding ceremony script written for same-sex and other LGBTQ+ couples, with gender-neutral language, suggestions for inclusive Bible scripture readings, and prayers. Written by AMM Minister and wedding officiant Paul Tedesco, this original wedding script is inspired by the traditional Catholic marriage rite for modern gay and lesbian couples and others who wish to marry outside the Church while honoring their faith.

This original wedding ceremony script is written by AMM Minister Paul Tedesco. It is loosely inspired by Catholism's Rite of Marriage, The Roman Ritual, but is adapted for modern same-sex couples and LGBTQ+ couples of any sexual orientation or gender. 

 

This modern Catholic wedding script follows a familiar order of service, and includes many of the components of a traditional Catholic marriage rite. Various options for inclusion (e.g., Suggestions for Catholic wedding songs and scripture readings, use of music, intercessory prayers, etc.) are included. 

 

Special note from the author:

"This Catholic Wedding Ceremony Script is intended for a couple wherein one or both consider themselves Catholic but are unable to marry in a Catholic church because of their sexual orientation. It is designed for those for whom their faith remains real and important to them nonetheless, and who wish to celebrate it in a Catholic ritual familiar and meaningful to them, one designed to reflect inclusivity, and led by an Officiant sensitive to diversity, keeping in mind that it’s not a ‘gay’ or ‘lesbian’ wedding; it’s a ‘wedding.’

 

Special care should be taken to use appropriate language throughout, e.g., instead of ‘husband and wife’ or ‘bride and groom,’ choose – as per the couple’s preference – ‘the grooms,’ ‘the brides,’ partner, life partner, companion in marriage, etc.  For purposes of simplicity, “the Grooms” or “the Brides” will be used in the ritual below, though alternative preferred nomenclature is appropriate as desired by the couple.  The Officiant should, throughout, make special effort to understand the couple’s point of view and preferences.  In select circumstances, it may be preferable to use gender neutral language, e.g., ‘they’ instead of ‘he’ or ‘she’, or using the person’s name instead of a pronoun. The couple’s preference, at all times, should remain paramount."

 

 

♡ DOWNLOAD CATHOLIC LGBTQ+ WEDDING CEREMONY SCRIPT


ENTRANCE RITE

  • With appropriate instrumental musical accompaniment, the wedding party processes in a dignified manner from the church vestibule to the altar/alternate center front.  Remembering that each situation and couple’s family history and relationships are unique, the couple may (or not) prefer to have both sets of parents escort them in procession.
  1. The Officiant processes (from the vestibule/rear, or sacristy) to the altar/front.
  2. The Wedding Party processes (from the vestibule/rear) to the altar/front (as per the couple’s preference) to the altar/alternate front, lining up side by side in front of the altar/front, facing the guests.
  3. Ring bearer and Flower girl/boy process (from the vestibule) to their pre-arranged places.
  4. The Grooms/Brides/partners process (from the vestibule/rear) to the altar/alternate front center, escorted by parents (or other suitable escorts as appropriate), facing the guests.
  5. The parents (other suitable escorts) move to their seats as they reach the front.
  6. The Officiant stands before the Wedding Party, momentarily facing the guests.

SIGN OF THE CROSS & WELCOME

Officiant and guests 

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

  • The Officiant welcomes the guests in her/his own words, reminding them that God is present and anxious to bless N. and N. as they begin their married life.  Mention should be made of the breadth of the Almighty, His/Her love for both Grooms/Brides, and a reminder of Sacred Scripture’s dictum in Genesis 1:27 that each of us, however different, is made in the image and likeness of God.  

Officiant

So here we are. You made it. Everything’s done and ready.  Obstacles faced and hurdled. And so, for the next half-hour, let’s focus on here...now...tolerance...love...Jesus. Let us remember that God is bigger than all of us, bigger than our predispositions, bigger than the world, bigger than the church. Catholic, in the best sense of the word, connotes a ‘universal’ gathering, where all are welcome. Today, all are welcome here.  

  • (Allow for a moment of quiet prayer)

OPENING PRAYER 

Officiant to guests

 Now let us pray... (N. and N.), the Church shares your joy and warmly welcomes you, together with your families and friends, as today, in the presence of God, you establish between yourselves a lifelong and sacred partnership.  May the Lord hear you.  May he send you help and protect you.  May he grant your hearts' desires, and fulfill every one of your prayers, through Christ our Lord.

guests

Amen.

  • (The Officiant invites the guests to be seated; Chairs or specified seating should be provided for all in the wedding party, with chairs in place in the sanctuary/front, facing the guests, for the Grooms/Brides  on one side, and the two Witnesses on the other)

SCRIPTURE READINGS

  • (It is appropriate and preferable that the Grooms/Brides/partners, beforehand, choose readings from Sacred Scripture that convey what they believe God is saying to and about them and their marriage.  
  • There should be a First Reading, followed by (ideally) a sung Responsorial Psalm; a Second Reading, followed by (ideally) a sung ‘Alleluia’ verse; and a Gospel Reading.  It is preferred that the Grooms/Brides/partners, beforehand, choose ‘readers’ for the first and second readings, who should proclaim them from the church’s pulpit or lectern, or from a place of prominence in an alternative setting.  
  • The Gospel should be proclaimed by the Officiant, also from the church’s pulpit or lectern, or from a place of prominence in an alternative setting.

+ Recommendations for choosing readers, as well as appropriate options for all Scripture readings, can be found here, keeping in mind that some use gender-specific language.
(As provided by the Catholic Diocese of Peoria): 

Selections of Readings for Weddings

FIRST SCRIPTURE READING

Reader 

A reading from the Book of _____________________.

  • The reader reads the chosen scripture. One pertinent suggestion is Jeremiah 31:31-32, 33-34, though the Grooms/Brides/partners may choose any First Reading they'd like from the link above

Reader

(After proclaiming the reading)  The Word of the Lord.

guests

Thanks be to God.

RESPONSORIAL PSALM

  • If sung, musicians will lead the guests in sung response at the end of each verse.
  • If read by a chosen Reader, they will invite the guests to respond with the designated response at the end of each verse.

SECOND SCRIPTURE READING

Reader

A second reading from the Book of _____________________.

  • Pertinent recommendations include Romans 8:31-35, 37-39, or Romans 12:1-2, 9-18, though the Grooms/Brides/partners may choose any Second Reading they'd like from the link above

Reader

(After proclaiming the reading)  The Word of the Lord.

guests

Thanks be to God.

ALLELUIA VERSE 

  • The Officiant should invite the guests to stand; If sung, musicians will lead the guests in sung verse. If read, the Reader will invite the guests to respond with the designated verse


GOSPEL

Officiant

A reading from the Gospel according to _____________________.

  • A pertinent recommendation is Matthew 5:1-12a, though the Grooms/Brides/partners may choose any Gospel reading they'd like from the link above

Officiant

(After proclaiming the reading)  The Gospel of the Lord.

guests

Praise to You, Lord Jesus Christ.

  • The Officiant should invite the guests to be seated.

HOMILY

  • The Homily is optional. 
  • If the Officiant desires and is qualified, they may preach a brief homily elucidating God’s word in the day’s chosen scripture readings, making clear connections to the commitment of marriage, the lives of the wedding couple, unique challenges already and to be faced, and God’s place therein

INTRODUCTORY ADDRESS & QUESTIONING BEFORE CONSENT

  • The Officiant should invite the wedding party to stand and resume their places facing the Officiant/guests before the altar/alternate front center, the Grooms/Brides/partners in the center, flanked by the two Witnesses, and the wedding party on either side

Officiant

 N. and N., you have come together so that in the presence of myself and this community, your intention to enter into Marriage may be strengthened by the Lord with a sacred seal.  Christ abundantly blesses the love that binds you.  He enriches and strengthens those he has already consecrated by Baptism, that they may be faithful to each other forever, and assume all the responsibilities of married life.  

And so, in the presence of myself and your guests, I ask you to state your intentions.

STATEMENT OF INTENTIONS

Officiant 

N. and N., have you come here to enter into Marriage without coercion, freely and wholeheartedly?

Partner a & partner b 

(Answering individually) I have.

Officiant 

Are you prepared, as you follow the path of your Marriage, to love and honor each other for as long as you both shall live?

partner a & partner B

(Answering individually) I am.

  • The following question may be omitted if, for example, the couple is advanced in years, or do not expect to have children

Officiant

Are you prepared to accept children lovingly as gifts from God and to bring them up in the love of Jesus Christ?
 

partner A and partner b

(Answering individually) I am.

Officiant to guests 

  • (Optional Community Vow, spoken to the guests)

Do you promise to support this couple, encourage their marriage and witness their lives together?

Guests

We do!

  • The Officiant will lead the Grooms/Brides/partners in declaring their consent.  The Officiant should lead them with a few words at a time, allowing them to repeat each line.

partner a to partner b

 I, N., take you, N., to be my husband/wife/spouse.  I promise to be true to you in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health, to love you and to honor you, all the days of my life.

partner b to partner a

I, N., take you, N., to be my husband/wife/spouse.  I promise to be true to you in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health, to love you and to honor you, all the days of my life.

RECEPTION OF THE CONSENT

  • Officiant places his hand over their joined hands to symbolically seal their consent

Officiant

May the Lord in his kindness strengthen the consent you have declared before us, and bless you every day of your life together. What God has joined, no one should divide. Amen.

BLESSING AND EXCHANGE OF RINGS / PRONOUNCEMENT

  • The Officiant will receive the rings in the palm of his hands, typically from one of the two Witnesses.  Care should be taken beforehand to ensure careful transmission of the rings from the Ring Bearer to the Witness to the Officiant

Officiant

May the Lord bless these rings which you give to each other as the sign of your love and faithfulness. Amen.

  • The Officiant gives each partner the other’s ring to place on their ring finger, leading each partner in the words of exchange

partner a to partner b

N., take this ring as a sign of my love and faithfulness.  In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

  • partner a places the ring on partner b's ring finger

partner b to partner a

 N., take this ring as a sign of my love and faithfulness.  In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.
 

  • partner b places the ring on partner a's ring finger

Officiant to the couple

On behalf of God and his Church, I now pronounce you married.  

(To both) You may kiss your spouse (or, alternatively), You may seal your vows with a kiss.

 

  • Optional:  This may be an appropriate time for a musical interlude, either sung or instrumental.  The bridal couple may be invited to sit

GENERAL INTERCESSIONS

  • It is preferred that a reader be chosen beforehand to proclaim the intercessions, from the pulpit/lectern or a place of prominence in an alternative setting.  
  • The Officiant invites all to stand

Officiant 

 We’ve listened to God’s word.  Now, we ask God to listen to us as we pray, together, for those who need our prayer...At the end of each petition, please respond together, “Lord, hear our prayer.”
 

Reader

For the church everywhere, that it may grow in tolerance and understanding of all people and celebrate their differences, always and everywhere, let us pray to the Lord.
 

guests

Lord, hear our prayer.

Reader

For peace and unity in our country, and among countries and peoples, let us pray to the Lord.
 

guests

Lord, hear our prayer.

Reader

For people who feel excluded, that they will belong, let us pray to the Lord.
 

guests

Lord, hear our prayer.

Reader

For N. and N., that they will have God’s help at every moment of their marriage, the constant understanding and support of family and friends, (the rich blessing of children), and good health, let us pray to the Lord.
 

guests

Lord, hear our prayer.

Reader

For the deceased loved ones in N.’s and N.’s hearts, (names of favored deceased should be prepared beforehand if desired)...may they rest forever in God’s hands, let us pray to the Lord.
 

guests

Lord, hear our prayer.

Reader

Almighty God, we lean on You, we depend on You, we trust You.  We ask all of this, through Christ, our Lord.
 

guests

Lord, hear our prayer.

unity candle lighting

  • this unity ceremony is optional
  • If the Grooms/Brides desire, a large candle should be prepared beforehand at a place of prominence in the sanctuary/alternate front.  
  • Lighted tapers may be received by the Grooms/Brides/partners from the parents/elders if desired, then the newly-married couple simultaneously light the Unity Candle, and take their seats.  
  • Alternatively, guests may be invited to take part by handing out candles and having guests pass the flame from one to another until everyone is holding a lit candle. The final guest would then transfer the flame to the couple, or to the parents to transfer to the couple, to light their unity candle).  
  • It is preferable that appropriate instrumental/other music be played/sung throughout.

Read more about the Unity Candle ceremony: 

+ How to Perform a Unity Candle Ceremony (for Wedding Officiants)
 

THE LORD’S PRAYER

Officiant

Now, together, let us pray the Lord’s prayer.

Officiant and guests

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen.

NUPTIAL BLESSING

  • The Officiant should invite the newly-married couple to bow their heads
  • This blessing begins with an optional excerpt from the Supreme Court’s summary opinion in the landmark 2015 case Obergefell vs. Hodges, 576 U.S. 644, that affirmed same-sex marriages and the rights of same-sex couples and LGBTQ+ couples to marry: 

Officiant

“No union is more profound than marriage, for it embodies the highest ideals of love, fidelity, devotion, sacrifice, and family.  In forming a marital union, two people become something greater than once they were...They respect marriage so deeply that they seek to find its fulfillment themselves.  Their hope is not be condemned to live in loneliness...They ask for equal dignity in the eyes of the law.” Together, in prayer, we pray for the gift of that dignity throughout the world and the church.”

Psalm 43 says, “Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you.  Show me the way I should go, for to you I entrust my life.”We pray the nuptial blessing together now, praying that N. and N. will put the same trust they have in each other, in their God, and entrust their life together, beginning today, to Him.

  • The Officiant should then invite the guests to extend their hands towards the newlyweds, and the two Witnesses to place a hand on the newlyweds' shoulders, as the Officiant extends her/his hands directly over the couple

Officiant

Lord, you created each of us in your own image, and made us to be joined to each other, a union of bodies and hearts.  Stretch out your hands now, and bless N. and N.

Grant that as they begin their marriage, they will become one in heart and mind, as witnesses to your presence in their marriage.  Help them to create a home together (and give them children to be formed by the gospel).

Give your blessing to N. and N., your sons/daughters/children, that they may be good husbands/wives/spouses (and fathers/mothers/parents), generous and kind, faithful in love for their husbands/wives/spouses. Grant that they may always find acceptance and support.

We all ask this through Christ our Lord.
 

guests

Amen.

INTRODUCTION OF COUPLE

Officiant

 And it is now my pleasure to introduce to you for the first time, N. and N. (appellation as preferred by couple)

  • guests applaud

CLOSING PRAYER AND BLESSING

Officiant

And may Almighty God bless all of us, keeping our hearts always open and warm, (making the Sign of the Cross) the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.
 

guests

Amen.

RECESSIONAL

  • To the accompaniment of appropriate music, the newly-married couple turns and processes to the rear of the church/alternate setting, followed by the Wedding Party and the Officiant
  • Ceremony ends.

 

Additional notes from the author:

 

  • Explanation of the nuptial blessing, procession and recessional, etc, can be found here.

 

 

ORIGINAL WEDDING SCRIPT BY PAUL TEDESCO.

 

Paul is a former priest / pastor, and administrator at a human services organization, holding a Master of Divinity degree. He has been a weekly columnist for The Catholic Spirit, a contributor to The National Catholic Reporter, and an invited headline guest on ABC 20/20 and the Canadian Broadcast Corporation radio network.

 

Paul is now happily retired, and spends much of his time writing in a variety of national forums and at Paul Tedesco, Author. He was ordained by American Marriage Ministries in 2021.

 


 

 

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