On this momentous day, I'd like to offer a prayer and a blessing for all those who will be entering into marriages ...
Eternal God, creator and preserver of all life, author of salvation, and giver of all grace: Look with favour upon the world you have made, and especially upon those who will be committing to a life of love together from today.
Give them wisdom and devotion in the ordering of their common life, that each may be to the other a strength in need, a counsellor in perplexity, a comfort in sorrow, and a companion in joy. Grant that their wills may be so knit together in your will, and their spirits in your spirit, that they may grow in love and peace with you and one another all the days of their life.
Give them grace, when they hurt each other, to recognise and acknowledge their fault, and to seek each other’s forgiveness and yours.
Make their life together a sign of Christ’s love to this sinful and broken world, that unity may overcome estrangement, forgiveness heal guilt, and joy conquer despair. Give them such fulfilment of their mutual affection that they may reach out in love and concern for others. Protect them from those who would wish them harm, and surround them with your grace and a community that loves and supports them.
Grant that the bonds of our common humanity, by which all your children are united to one another, and the living to the dead, may be so transformed by your grace, that your will may be done now and forever; through Jesus Christ, our Saviour.
May the blessing of God surround us
May angels and friends share our journey
May we be wise and strong and creative
May we celebrate life and hope
May we walk peacefully with Mother Earth.
May God’s image grow within us
May laughter and courage heal us
May the gospel of life sustain us
All the days of our journey home.
And may my own blessing be yours;
A blessing rooted in our common pilgrimage
The blessing of a friend.
Prayer, adapted from:
Ward, H. & Wild, J. (eds). Human Rites. Mowbray. 1995
The Iona Community; The Pattern of our Days. Wild Goose Pulbications. 1997
Burgess, R. & Galloway, K. (eds); Praying for the Dawn. Wild Goose Publications. 2000
Ward, H., Wild, J. & Morley, J. (eds); Celebrating Women. SPCK. 1995