Our Ceremony: Vows Revisited


This is going to be the last post in my marathon series of ceremony posts (at least for now!) but I figured I’d save one of the most important topics for last – our vows.

I mentioned a while back that I was super attracted to the idea of writing our own vows, but that I was unsure if Shaun would be down with the idea. Basically, his response was, “If you really want to…” Not entirely promising. Ok, I get it. There’s a lot of pressure in writing your own vows, especially if you don’t share them with the other person before the big day. Are they too long? Too short? Too serious? Not serious enough? For a guy with self-diagnosed “social anxiety,” that’s a lot to handle on what’s probably already going to be an overwhelming day. So we’re back to the drawing board.

With writing our own vows off of the table, I perused the good ol’ Internet looking for some ideas. Of course, I found several versions of the traditional vows. There were the traditional Catholic vows:

“I, _______, take you, ________, for my lawful wife/husband, to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and health, until death do us part.”

And the traditional Lutheran vows:

“I, (name), take you, (name), to be my (husband/wife),
and these things I promise you:
I will be faithful to you and honest with you;
I will respect, trust, help and care for you;
I will share my life with you;
I will forgive you as we have been forgiven;
and I will try with you better to understand ourselves, the world, and God;
through the best and the worst of what is to come as long as we live.”

But not wanting to play favorites to either tradition, given our desire for a non-denominational ceremony, we didn’t want to use either of these sets of vows outright. Plus, deep down I think I was still looking for something a little more personalized. This was the point where I had an amazing, wedding changing realization (ok, maybe that’s a little dramatic…) But it was one that I couldn’t believe I hadn’t come to before.

Why did it have to be one or the other? Why did we either have to choose the traditional vows or write our own vows for each other in secret? Instead, we could write our personalized vows together. That way, we could recite the same set of vows and make the same promises to each other, like the traditional set, but insert our own personalities and relationship into those promises. To us, it seemed like the perfect compromise.

Want to know what we came up with? Of course you do. But for that, you’ll have to hold tight…we can’t give everything away before the big day!

Do you prefer the traditional vows or personalized ones? Have you been to a wedding where the couple wrote their own vows?


3 responses »

  1. We used traditional Lutheran vows (Missouri Synod) and they were more like Catholic wording than what I had originally found on the internet as well. I have them posted on my blog in ceremony recaps, if you’re interested!

  2. That’s such a sweet idea. We’re writing our own vows too, but there’s something about the traditional (Catholic) vows that just seems so lovely to me… even though I’m not Catholic! We’ll probably try to find a way to incorporate those words into our day.
    BTW, found your blog through Weddingbee!

  3. Thanks for the comments! My fiance was very receptive of writing our own vows together – he liked the idea of us promising the same thing to each other even if they weren’t “traditional” vows. I think in the end we’ll be happy with our decision to write our own because it represents a compromise as opposed to choosing one set or the other. And welcome to any new readers (especially Bees!)

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