A couple puts great thought into their wedding vows - renewal ceremony vows require just as much consideration even though the couple is already married.
About Vow Renewals
A couple may choose to renew their wedding vows for a number of reasons. Some couples opt to reenact their wedding festivities on a significant anniversary, or couples may choose to recommit themselves to their marriage after struggling though relationship difficulties or infidelity. For some couples, the opportunity to renew their vows in a religious setting is more meaningful than the civil ceremony they may have been married with, while others may choose to renew their vows on a grand scale after a simple elopement. Whatever the reason, the vows are one of the most significant parts of the event and should be chosen carefully to reflect the couple's strong marriage and ongoing commitment to one another.
Wedding Vows - Renewal Ceremony Ideas
While today's brides and grooms have many different options for their initial wedding vows, there are still some basic requirements for those sacred words, particularly for religious wedding vows - renewal ceremony vows, on the other hand, have fewer constraints and a couple may speak whatever words of love, devotion, honor, and commitment they wish as they pledge their love to one another again.
Popular ideas for renewal vows include:
- Repeating the original vows. This is particularly popular if the ceremony is a close approximation of the original celebration. Subtle changes should be made to the original wedding vows, however, to reflect the fact that the couple has been married for some time - changing "take this woman" to "keep this woman" for example.
- Choosing completely new vows. A couple that may have created their own wedding vows for their original ceremony may regret the loss of tradition, and so could opt for traditional wedding vows the second time around, or a couple that did adhere to classic vows may choose to create completely personal wedding vows for a renewal ceremony.
- Choosing family commitment vows. If a couple has been married for some time and now has children to share in the ceremony, adding a dedication to family is a meaningful and symbolic way to include everyone in the spoken promises.
- Writing reflective vows. Couples can write their own wedding vows for a renewal ceremony to reflect their years of marriage by including anecdotes and references to their married life in the promises they make. This can be a great opportunity for funny wedding vows that poke at the quirks of their relationship while still emphasizing that they love that silliness.
- Wording the vows for future actions. If a couple has overcome significant difficulties in their marriage, the renewal vows can share their dedication to making their shared future a brighter, more loving one. At the same time, it is important to remember that the vows are not the place to make public apologies for past transgressions; any serious issues ought to be resolved privately so the renewal ceremony can be a joyous celebration of the couple's continuing dedication to one another.
- Using an unconventional format. While traditional vows are solemnly spoken, renewal vows can be as fun and exotic as the couple wishes. Singing a song, reciting poetry, or crafting a clever vow limerick are all ways to create fun and unexpected vows.
Every couple is different and every marriage is different, so there is no standard format for renewal ceremony vows. Traditional vows can provide some inspiration for beautiful wording, or couples may opt for vows specifically geared toward a renewal ceremony. Samples of specialized renewal vows are available on the following websites:
A Word About Officials
If a couple is planning a renewal ceremony, it is important to note that because they are already legally married, an authorized officiant does not need to preside over the ceremony. Many couples, however, do choose to have a priest or other recognized official conduct their ceremony, and it can be especially touching to have the same officiant as for the couple's first wedding. For a more casual affair, however, a family member, friend, or other significant individual could also conduct the ceremony.
Wedding vows - renewal ceremony vows in particular - are a wonderful way for a couple to express their love, commitment, and dedication toward one another. Whether renewal vows mimic the initial wedding or if they are more unconventional, the key is that they still express the ongoing romance and joy the couple finds in their relationship, till death do they part.