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Apr 16, 2009


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Ted Weis

Break down the economic realities of marriage! ;)

Douglas Wilson has wedding homilies posted on his blog.

Wedding homilies are almost like commencement addresses-- no one really cares or will remember. So make it short and sweet. Don't wing it. Have your words printed.

Ideas: Instill the idea that they are embarking on a great journey. One couple I officiated enjoyed golf, so I played off that image. Challenge them to view their marriage as an act of discipleship and in service to God's kingdom. Above all, make your words biblically centered.


just wanted to say that you have a pretty cool blog here. good site



Brief is good

Since this is someone you know well and who knows you as well I'd feel free to use an appropriate story from your niece's life or an example from your own married life if you can do it w/o making you or her the center of the service. (That's the challenge that all preachers face when they use their own life as part of the sermon).

That would help make it more persoanl and might connect better than "theoretical" words or advice about the nature of marriage.

Michael W. Kruse

Very helpful advice, Ted. You wrote:

"Break down the economic realities of marriage!"

Well, the groom works for a Wall Street investment house and my niece is finishing up her CPA exams. You may be on to something.

Your advice about "journey" is exactly where my thoughts have been.

Michael W. Kruse


Thanks for that affirmation.


I hear you on the personal story dilemma. I use stories and illustrations when I give talks. The danger of it seeming "all about me" by using personal examples is a real challenge, though friends have encouraged me to use more. I'm even more anxious about using stories of people I know for fear I will reveal something that seems harmless to me but was private to them.

"...connect better than "theoretical" words or advice about the nature of marriage."

So are you suggesting I should drop the part about the evolution of marriage in Western Civilization and its significance for socio-cultural dynamics? :-)

Alan Wilkerson

Go with Princess Bride. One thing I do is talk to the couple not the congregation. I try to focus on some aspect of their life together that they can celebrate even as they work on it.

Example: When I did my son's wedding I told He and Kate (not the exact words)... Kid you've got to stop being a smart ass to you wife. She doesn't always get it when you're kidding. Kate, my FAVORITE daughter in law... "I'm sorry". You chose to live with him good luck.



"So are you suggesting I should drop the part about the evolution of marriage in Western Civilization and its significance for socio-cultural dynamics? :-)"

Maybe give them a bound copy as a wedding present.

I'd still encourage you to think about stories even as you are aware of the dangers. You know you are going for something that sheds light not something that is cute/funny just for laughs. That awareness will reduce the chance that you use an inappropriate one. But get permission from your wife if you are going to use one involving here. And from your neice and her family if you are using one about her. In fact it would not be a bad idea to chat with the couple about what you are thinking about saying, that way they hear it twice.

Sounds like folks have affirmed your skill as a story teller..... use that gift.

Michael W. Kruse

Thanks Alan. I've been giving some thought along those lines.

Ceemac, I will certainly discuss the theme of what I'm going to say. But I still like beginning like the bishop in the Princess Bride. :-)

Ed Chinn

First, make it real and from the heart. Do nothing from "script." Every time I officiate a wedding, I approach it as though this is the first time a wedding ceremony has ever been done. Think and pray through the whole thing in a pristine way. Yes, I know we're all busy and it's easy to cut-and-paste from other ceremonies. But, still...

Second, recognize that The Covenant is kissing specific lives. Their covenant reflects the one binding God to humanity. Heaven and earth are watching. Every wedding is another announcement that God is reliable and His word endures.

This is great and sober and joyous news.

Michael W. Kruse

"great and sober and joyous"


Scot McKnight

Focus on fidelity and a life lived together over the long run.

Michael W. Kruse

That is the core of what I want to get at. Still working on how to say it to this unique couple.


I looked in vain for notes of comments I made at my own niece's wedding last year, mostly so I could make an accurate attribution. What I do remember is the benediction which addressed bride and groom individually and went something like: "May your love be so great as to exclude all others, yet be so strong as to embrace the whole world." Blessings

Rick McGinniss

I've done a lot of weddings over the years ranging from the "we just want a rent-a-preacher" style to the "we want the most fabulous wedding we can imagine" (it actually ended up in Brides magazine - the couple spent $30K to have it at the top of the Fairmont Hotel downtown - and divorced two years later).

Lately, though, I've focused on one of two options: a small intimate gathering of family and friends, where I briefly explain the marriage covenant and the need to submit to one another out of reverence for Christ, then read the vows, do the rings and pray. I'm always amazed at how powerful that simple ceremony is. Makes me cry every time. :)

The other option, which requires a solid Christian couple with an evangelistic heart and some planning and creativity, is to use the wedding ceremony not only as a celebration of the couple's marriage, but also as an illustration of what it means for Jesus to be "the bridegroom." In that scenario, I explain to the congregation before anything begins what it is they are going to see: on one level its about this couple; on another level it's about Christ and those who say yes to being his people.

Probably more than you want to know ... good luck!

Oh, one other thing: I always tell the couple after the rehearsal that the next day should be the most fun day of their lives. When stuff doesn't go like you planned (and that's true of every wedding), try to roll with it and enjoy the moment.

Michael W. Kruse

Duane and Rick, thanks. Everyone here has given me some helpful stuff. I appreciate your attempts to help Uncle Mike not mess it up. :-)


You've been getting lots of good comments, here, Uncle Mike...here's what the Abbess says:

--You've got to start with the "Mawege. Mawege is what bwings us together today. ..." You are a known jokester and it will break the tension. Then you've got the jokes out of the way and can get to the heart of it.

--You've got to have something to say right into the eyes and heart of each of then as individual Eikons. I pray the the Holy Spirit will help you discern just what that is, brother.

--You've got to find a fresh way for them to embrace the mystery and paradox that is covenant making -- and with it, the powerful concept of covenant keeping. The making of the covenant is important, but the rubber meets the road in the day to day chesed required to be faithful.

Be sure to have a linen hanky in your pocket. Even if you don't need it, the bride just might....

Michael W. Kruse

"I pray the the Holy Spirit will help you discern just what that is"

That is what I'm praying for.

Property Management Chicago

This is a nice blog. Thanks. I agree with Peggy tho'. Short, sweet and memorable to everybody...

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