To have and to hold

Typography

TO KEEP YOUR CEREMONY ON TRACK WITH THESE TIPS

When Katherine and Mike Palmeri look back on their October wedding at Palmetto Bluff, their minds go immediately to one thing: the ceremony itself, which the couple wrote together, including their vows.

“Neither of us is religious, but it was really nice for us to write the whole thing together,” Katherine said.

Katherine and Mike PalmeriThe ceremony isn’t just a beautiful moment between two people in love; it’s a binding event in the eyes of both the local government and, depending on your personal preference, your house of worship, and there are several things you need to do before you say “I do.” Before you can walk down the aisle, you need to make sure you’ve filled out all the forms — dotting your I's and crossing your T's.

 

MAKE IT OFFICIAL

Before your big day, you and your fiancé will need to apply in person for a marriage license. The main office of the Beaufort County Probate Court in Beaufort and the Hilton Head Island satellite office have different hours and appointment requirements, so make sure you check before you make the drive.

“NEITHER OF US IS RELIGIOUS, BUT IT WAS REALLY NICE FOR US TO WRITE THE WHOLE THING TOGETHER”

There is a 24-hour waiting period after you submit your application before your license will be issued, so don’t wait until the last minute.

Katherine and Mike Palmeri2Of course, you’ll need more than a marriage license to make your union official. You’ll also need to make sure you have an officiant to perform the ceremony. Certain members of the clergy, chiefs or spiritual leaders of recognized Native American tribes, judges and notaries public are authorized to administer the oath and sign the marriage license; it’s up to you whom you select. Registered officiants often charge a fee, but some clergy will perform the ceremony in return for a donation to the church. Expect to pay between $500 and $800.

Once you have your marriage license and your officiant, you’re ready to plan your ceremony. Your officiant can guide you when it comes to a “traditional” service, but speak up if you want to add or amend things to make your ceremony uniquely yours.

IF YOU CHOOSE TO WRITE A PERSONAL VOW, ASK YOURSELF WHAT MATTERS MOST TO YOU BOTH.

A traditional service starts with the procession down the aisle, followed by the officiant’s opening remarks, readings, the exchange of vows and rings, the marriage pronouncement, the kiss and the recessional. You can personalize your ceremony by selecting music and readings that have significance, or add elements like a sand-pouring ceremony or unity candle to symbolize your new union. And, of course, don’t be afraid to write your own vows.

»»»» FOR MORE ON MARRIAGE LICENSE REQUIREMENTS I N BEAUFORT COUNTY, GO TO HTTP://BIT.LY/1TVQCGE

VOWS THAT WOW

We’re all familiar with the traditional vows — for better or for worse, in sickness and in health. Though the wording can vary slightly, it always includes the same themes of love, bonding and faith to a higher being — though some couples today eliminate the “honor” and “obey” wording. One way or another, however, traditional vows usually end with the officiant asking the couple if they will take each other as husband and wife, followed by a blessing over the newly married couple.

Katherine and Mike Palmeri4A handful of nontraditional wedding vows have become standard choices for couples who opt not to embrace traditional or write personal vows. Regardless of which nontraditional vow is chosen, they all touch on common themes such as the constancy of love, celebration of life, trust, sharing of dreams and pledging faithfulness.

Personal wedding vows are just that: personal. Your love is personal, the relationships you both have with your family and friends are personal, and the hopes and dreams you share are personal. Katherine and Mike mixed romance and humor to punctuate their unique wedding vows with the flavor and feelings of their love story. If you choose to write a personal vow, ask yourself what matters most to you both. Express it in words, but also think about and agree on what tone to use — funny, serious, a little of both? And when in doubt, keep it short.

After you and your fiancé have exchanged vows and presented each other with rings, you’re ready to head back up the aisle and hit the reception as a married couple.

TRADITIONAL VOWS (FROM THE UNITED METHODIST CHURCH) :

IN THE NAME OF GOD,
I, SAM, TAKE YOU, ALEX, TO BE MY HUSBAND,
TO HAVE AND TO HOLD
FROM THIS DAY FORWARD,
FOR BETTER, FOR WORSE,
FOR RICHER, FOR POORER,
IN SICKNESS AND IN HEALTH,
TO LOVE AND TO CHERISH,
UNTIL WE ARE PARTED BY DEATH.
THIS IS MY SOLEMN VOW.

 

IN THE NAME OF GOD,
I, ALEX, TAKE YOU, SAM, TO BE MY WIFE,
TO HAVE AND TO HOLD
FROM THIS DAY FORWARD,
FOR BETTER, FOR WORSE,
FOR RICHER, FOR POORER,
IN SICKNESS AND IN HEALTH,
TO LOVE AND TO CHERISH,
UNTIL WE ARE PARTED BY DEATH.
THIS IS MY SOLEMN VOW.

WWW.APRACTICALWEDDING.COM/TRADITIONAL-WEDDING-VOWS-EXAMPLES/