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Writing Wedding Vows

Assisting your Couples with Writing their Personal Vows

One of the most inspiring and heart-warming moments in any wedding ceremony is when couples share their personal vows!

When I first meet with a couple, they often express their fear and anxiety around writing their own vows.

They ask, ‘Where do I start and are you able to help us?’

I reassure them that, yes, I am happy to offer this as part of my service as a Celebrant.

They also ask what is normal for writing our vows.

While I explain there is no normal when writing their vows, I encourage them to write from their heart.

To get them started and to inspire, I will offer to send them several samples. This will give them a sense of relief when they know what to expect and where to begin.

Couples also ask – how long should my vows be?  While there is no perfect length – it is a personal choice and may reflect their own individual style.

There is a sweet spot of 45 to 90 seconds. This timeframe is not too long, nor is too short.  I suggest to my couple, when rehearsing your draft if it feels to short or too long, it is! Adjust accordingly.

Several couples like their vows to be similar in length, and while I am happy to ensure they are without revealing any secrets I remind couples it isn’t about the length, it’s about the quality of your words and your style that matters.  If one partner loves public speaking and wants to share a good story or two, giving them a short timeframe may stifle their creativity. The reverse can be true for another partner who isn’t comfortable speaking in public and may not be comfortable with a longer timeline.  

Groom in Suit Writing Vow in Notepad

Here’s a few additional suggestions I offer my couples:

Keep a list. Jot down your thoughts, favourite memories, moments and reflections on your phone or a pad of paper.

Do a rough first draft. Take that list and start to write your vows in point form.

Send the draft to a trusted friend or to your officiant to look over or to assist with any edits or to enhance.

Short and sweet.  Quality is more powerful than quantity.

Use your own words and bring your whole self into reflect your own personal style.

Personalize – If you’re a storyteller, share one, if you’re funny, add humour; if you write poetry – do that.

Say ‘I love you’. Share your love and adoration with your partner.

I love you exactly as you are, and I wouldn’t change a thing.

I love all your quirks and idiosyncrasies, because that makes you, you!

Make promises

I promise to always have your back.

I promise to always keep you and our relationship first.

Second and multiple drafts as needed to tweak until it feels just right.

Rehearse. Say your vows out loud and edit as needed to ensure it flows easily.

Start early. Don’t leave it to the last minute, minimize your stress so the process can be fun.

Vows are as unique and individual as each couple you are marrying!

It has been my experience that couples who write their vows from their heart often surprise themselves with just how easy it was to do.  I am always pleasantly surprised by how emotional and heart-felt they turn out to be.

Give your couples a sense of comfort that they can trust you to have their backs when they begin to write their vows. 

Much love,

Cathy x

Rev. Cathy Yost CS.p
Co-creator, Instructor, Program Advisor ~ The Celebrant and Spiritual Practitioner (CSP) program

Reverend Cathy Yost is a SolePath certified technician, a Certified Life-Cycle Celebrant™ trained with the Celebrant Foundation and Institute in New Jersey, and a Funeral Celebrant trained with the Certified Celebrants Association of Canada (CCAOC). She is an ordained metaphysical minister through CIMM.Cathy officiates up to 100 ceremonies each year, including weddings and funerals. 

Cathy’s journalism education launched her into writing, producing and production coordinating for television, radio and film. As a Professional Business and Life Coach she took her training in Australia with Coach University and was a member of the International Coach Federation for over a decade.  

Her SolePath is Progression Inspirational Teacher and Joyful Spiritual Mystic, (Dark Compassionate Healer).


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