Our Ceremony

Sabrina and I put together our ceremony from start to finish. We wanted a ceremony that really meant something to us. Each part of the ceremony had some sort of symbolic reference to our lives together. It was important for us that we not be doing something because that was the way it always had been done or because it was tradition. Instead, each song, word and action had to have purpose. It came together really well. Below is the actual dialogue we used in our ceremony.

We were also very fortunate to have a dear friend of ours perform the ceremony. Dom knew each of us separately before there was a Shawn and Sabrina. After Sabrina and I met and became a couple, Dom was always there for each of us when it came to relationship advice or when we just needed someone to talk to. He’s been a great friend of the years and it was very special to us to have him perform our ceremony.

Ceremony Video


Ceremony Wording
[Music starts – Yellow]

[Groom’s Dad escorts Mothers down the aisle to light taper candles]

[Dom, Shawn, Nick, Scott, & Derek enter from front]

[Emily walks down aisle]

[Amber walks down aisle]

[Cheryl walks down aisle]

[Kaleb walks down aisle]

[Debbie & Kelsie walk down aisle]

[Music starts – All I Want Is You]

[Sabrina and Dad walk down aisle]

Dom: Family and friends, we have come together today before God to witness the union of Shawn and Sabrina. In the years they have been together, their love and understanding of each other has grown and matured, and now they have decided to live their lives together as husband and wife.

Who supports this woman in her marriage to this man?

Tom: Her mother and I do.
[kisses Sabrina and sits]

Dom: Today, Shawn and Sabrina will leave their individual lives behind and become one. Sorrow for one will be sorrow for the other. Joy for one will be joy for the other. Love for one will be love for the other.

Shawn and Sabrina, your lives are about to become joined forever. You will not only be responsible for yourselves but for each other and your family. Do you pledge to help each other to develop your hearts and minds, cultivating compassion, generosity, patience, enthusiasm, concentration and wisdom as you age and undergo the various ups and downs of life and to transform them into the path of love, compassion, joy and equanimity?

Couple: We do.

Dom: Recognizing that the external conditions in life will not always be smooth and that internally your own minds and emotions will sometimes get stuck in negativity, do you pledge to see all these circumstances as a challenge to help you grow, to open your hearts, to accept yourselves, and each other; and to generate compassion for others who are suffering? Do you pledge to avoid becoming narrow, closed or opinionated, and to help each other to see various sides of situations?

Couple: We do.

Dom: Do you pledge to preserve and enrich your affection for each other, and to share it with all beings? To take the loving feelings you have for one another and your vision of each other’s potential and inner beauty as an example, and rather than spiraling inwards and becoming self absorbed, to radiate this love outwards to all beings?

Couple: We do.

Dom: Shawn and Sabrina, do you promise to dedicate yourselves completely to each other, with body, speech, and mind?

Couple: We do.

Dom: In this life, in every situation, in wealth or poverty, in health or sickness, in happiness or difficulty, will you work to help each other perfectly?

Couple: We will.

Dom: Will you love and honour each other as husband and wife for the rest of your lives?

Couple: We will.

Dom: Please face each other and join hands.

[Sabrina hands her bouquet to Cheryl. Shawn and Sabrina face each other and join hands.]

Shawn, repeat after me. From this moment, I, Shawn, take you, Sabrina as my lawfully wedded wife.

Shawn: From this moment, I, Shawn, take you, Sabrina as my lawfully wedded wife.

Dom: I pledge to honour, encourage, and support you in our walk through life together.

Shawn: I pledge to honour, encourage, and support you in our walk through life together.

Dom: When our way becomes difficult, I promise to stand by you and uplift you, so that through our union we can accomplish more than we could alone.

Shawn: When our way becomes difficult, I promise to stand by you and uplift you, so that through our union we can accomplish more than we could alone.

Dom: I promise to work at our love and always make you a priority in my life.

Shawn: I promise to work at our love and always make you a priority in my life.

Dom: With every beat of my heart, I will love you. This is my solemn vow.

Shawn: With every beat of my heart, I will love you. This is my solemn vow.

Dom: Sabrina, repeat after me. From this moment, I, Sabrina, take you, Shawn as my lawfully wedded husband.

Sabrina: From this moment, I, Sabrina, take you, Shawn as my lawfully wedded husband.

Dom: I pledge to honour, encourage, and support you in our walk through life together.

Sabrina: I pledge to honour, encourage, and support you in our walk through life together.

Dom: When our way becomes difficult, I promise to stand by you and uplift you, so that through our union we can accomplish more than we could alone.

Sabrina: When our way becomes difficult, I promise to stand by you and uplift you, so that through our union we can accomplish more than we could alone.

Dom: I promise to work at our love and always make you a priority in my life.

Sabrina: I promise to work at our love and always make you a priority in my life.

Dom: With every beat of my heart, I will love you. This is my solemn vow.

Sabrina: With every beat of my heart, I will love you. This is my solemn vow.

[Nick gives Dom the rings]

Dom: Every covenant has a sign or symbol to remind each party of the responsibilities he or she brings to the relationship. These rings are a symbol of your love. They are a visible reminder to you and all others of what you have promised you will do. Wear them as a constant reminder that you are pledged together and committed to one another for life.

Shawn take this ring, place it upon Sabrina’s finger and repeat after me.

Sabrina, I give you this ring as a symbol of my love. I pledge to you my loyalty and devotion, until we are separated by death.

Shawn: Sabrina, I give you this ring as a symbol of my love. I pledge to you my loyalty and devotion, until we are separated by death.

Dom: Sabrina take this ring, place it upon Shawn’s finger and repeat after me.

Shawn, I give you this ring as a symbol of my love. I pledge to you my loyalty and devotion, until we are separated by death.

Sabrina: Shawn, I give you this ring as a symbol of my love. I pledge to you my loyalty and devotion, until we are separated by death.

Dom: Shawn and Sabrina, please step to your unity candle.

[Shawn and Sabrina step towards unity candle]

The two outside candles have been lit by their mothers to represent their lives to this moment. The lights, representing the wisdom and love they have received from their parents, are distinct, each burning alone. They light the center candle to symbolize the union of their lives. As this light burns undivided, so shall their love be one. From now on their thoughts shall be for each other rather than for their individual selves. Their joys and sorrows shall be shared alike. May the radiance of this light and their journey together be a testimony to their unity.

[Music starts quietly – Sweet Child O’ Mine]

[Shawn and Sabrina return to center stage]

Dom: And now that Shawn and Sabrina have stood before us and exchanged these rings and their vows, and have agreed to be married according to the laws of the state of Maryland, it gives me gives me great pleasure to pronounce that they are Husband and Wife.

Shawn, you may kiss your bride.

[Big kiss]

Dom: Family and friends, it is my honor to present to you, for the first time, Mr. and Mrs. Shawn Grimes.

[Music volume increased]

[Shawn and Sabrina retreat down the aisle]

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