Create Memorable Ceremonies With Officiant Templates

This wedding ceremony template follows the format described on our page, The Parts of a Wedding Ceremony Script.

The officiant template wedding script below focuses on the names of the parts of the ceremony. Speaking stage directions are included to clarify when the officiant is addressing the couple versus the wedding reception.

A Sample Wedding Ceremony


[Start of the Wedding Ceremony - The guests are seated followed by the entrance of the wedding party.]


(Officiant to the Reception)

"Dearly Beloved and Honored Guests, We are gathered together here today to join and in marriage.

This is a serious contract requiring a deep understanding of its obligations and responsibilities. Remember that love, loyalty, and empathy are the foundations of a happy and enduring marriage."

Declaration of Intent

(Officiant to Partner A)

"Do you take this person to be your lawfully wedded partner, to have and to hold, in sickness and in health, in good times and bad, for richer or poorer, for as long as you both shall live?"

(Partner A to Partner B)

"I do"

(Officiant to Partner B)

"Do you take this person to be your lawfully wedded partner, to have and to hold, in sickness and in health, in good times and bad, for richer or poorer, for as long as you both shall live?"

(Partner B to Partner A)

"I do"

Vows and Rings Exchange

(Officiant to the Reception)

" and will now exchange their vows and rings to show their love and commitment."

[ Vows and Rings are Exchanged]


(Officiant to the Reception)

"By the authority vested in me by American Marriage Ministries and the State of I now pronounce you married."


[End of the Wedding Ceremony - The couple kisses and leaves followed by the Wedding Reception.]

Well, that's the basic officiant template. Looks pretty simple, right? That's because it is, and if that's the officiant template that works for you, then by all means feel free to download it and fill in the appropriate names and dates. But even if you want to keep things simple, the quality of your delivery will improve if you've got a good grasp on how we got to this simple wedding service template.

So let's spend a few minutes unpacking this.

The invocation is sometimes called the introduction, or wedding speech, but it's always near the beginning of the ceremony. You can think of it as the foundation of the officiant template. It's going to set the tone for the rest of the ceremony, remind the guests why they are there, and create the wedding service template for the next ten minutes of the ceremony.

Some other points to keep in mind when creating your own invocation are:

The declaration of intent is a relatively simple procedure, and you can use either of the templates provided above. That said, this part of the ceremony is where the couple verbally states that they are willingly entering into the contract of marriage, so you don't want to get too creative. Make sure that it's clear what is being said and why.

Some couples want to state this part together, which means the wording needs to be changed slightly, and that the response is “We do…” As the officiant, you can help couples understand their options here and find words that they are happy with.

The vows and ring exchange for this ceremony have been merged, because this is a stripped down ceremony, but in theory, they are distinct components. The script above includes the introduction from the officiant, but once you're done, the couple will take turns speaking. As the officiant, try using the suggestions here to help the couple write their own words.

Say "I love you,” in your own words. Draw on important moments and experiences that showed you how you felt about your partner. What was the moment when you knew he or she was the one, what is it about your partner that fills your heart with joy, why are they different and special?

Tell your partner you're planning on sticking around. Marriage isn't always easy, and your vows are a way to recognize that while this is true, you are up for the challenge. When times get hard (or great) let your partner know that they are worth the effort.

Share those stories that mean so much. Talking about funny or touching moments shows a deep recognition for what makes your partner special. They also make guests feel like they are part of the experience, when they can all laugh about fighting over the last Diet Coke in the fridge, or how brave you were when you got all those bug bites on vacation. Every couple is defined by their shared moments, and the vows are the place to share them and give them extra meaning.

Make real promises! Vows are serious public commitments, so give your choice of words serious thought. That said, this isn't like reading out the fine print on your phone contract. You can find a way to share your version of, “I'll love you forever, even if you steal the blankets…”

The pronouncement is pretty simple, but it's important because it signals to the guests that the ceremony is ending. We recommend using some version of, "By the authority vested in me by American Marriage Ministries…” but there are variations that might make more sense. You can use a pronouncement such as, “Having entered willingly into the contract of marriage, I am honored to welcome…” or something like that.

That's it! Now it's recession time, that's when the couple, wedding party, family, and guests make their exit, usually in that order. As always, we urge you to make whatever changes make sense. Now that you've got a working model, see what works for the couple, and the rest should fall into place nicely!


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