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Ceremony Text

Opening Blessings

B'rukhot ha-ba'ot b'shem Adonai, ivdu et Adonai b'simchah bo'u l'fanav birnanah. Hodu la-Adonai ki tov ki l'olam chasdo. Mi adir al ha-kol mi barukh al ha-kol hu y'varekh et ba'alot ha-brit. Hodu la-Adonai ki tov ki l'olam chasdo.

Blessed are you who come here, under this chuppah. May these two who enter here be blessed with love and hope and joy.  Make their home a shelter against the storm, a haven of peace, a stronghold of love.

Kiddush

This cup of wine is symbolic of the cup of life. As you share the one cup of wine, you undertake to share all that the future may bring. All the sweetness life's cup may hold for you should be the sweeter because you drink it together; whatever drops of bitterness it may contain should be less bitter because you share them. As we recite the blessing over wine, we hope that fullness of joy will come to you:

Baruch ata Adonai Eloheinu melech ha-olam borei p'ri ha-gafen.

Blessed is the human capacity for joy, embodied in the symbol of wine.

Shehechiyanu

Barukh ata Adonai Eloheinu melech ha-olam she-hechiyanu v 'kiy'manu v'higianu la-z'man ha-zeh.

Blessed are we that we have been given life, and been sustained, and have lived to see this day.

Ketubah

On this day of great celebration and joy, on the third day of the week, the eighteenth day of the month of Tishri, in the year 5770, which corresponds to the sixth day of the month of October, in the year 2009, in the city of Winchester, Massachusetts, 2dBride, daughter of [parents' names], and NotFroofy, daughter of [parents' names], spoke the words and performed the rites which united their lives and affirmed their love.  On this day, we promise to honor our vibrant love, to nurture and protect it.  Our lives, enriched by our unique traditions and faiths, will embody trust, constancy, and compromise.  We will cherish and sustain each other, meeting life’s trials with quiet strength and courage, and embracing life’s blessings with wonder, joy, and laughter.  We will grow as individuals and delight in an elegant freedom borne from mutual respect.  May there be peace in our home, may we be blessed with good fortune, health, and happiness, and may our devotion to one another ennoble us.  “With my beloved by my side, every day is good to awaken to, and every moment is a gift.”  Our sacred covenant is valid and binding.

Declarations of Intent

Hosea 2: 19: And I will betroth you to me forever. I will betroth you to me in righteousness and in justice and in loving kindness and in compassion. And I will betroth you to me in faithfulness.

Rabbi: NotFroofy, will you take 2dBride to be your wife? Will you love her, comfort her, honor and protect her, and, forsaking all others, be faithful to her as long as you both shall live?

NotFroofy: I will

 

Rabbi: 2dBride, will you take NotFroofy to be your wife? Will you love her, comfort her, honor and protect her, and, forsaking all others, be faithful to her as long as you both shall live?

2dBride: I will

Rabbi: Will you, the families and friends of 2dBride and NotFroofy, support and uphold them in their marriage now and in the years to come?

Congregation: We will.

Reading

from Letters To A Young Poet, Rainer Maria Rilke

The point of marriage is not to create a quick commonality by tearing down all boundaries; on the contrary, a good marriage is one in which each partner appoints the other to be the guardian of his solitude, and thus they show each other the greatest possible trust. A merging of two people is an impossibility, and where it seems to exist, it is a hemming-in, a mutual consent that robs one party or both parties of their fullest freedom and development. But once the realization is accepted that even between the closest people infinite distances exist, a marvelous living side-by-side can grow up for them, if they succeed in loving the expanse between them, which gives them the possibility of always seeing each other as a whole and before an immense sky.

That is why this too must be the criterion for rejection or choice: whether you are willing to stand guard over someone else's solitude, and whether you are able to set this same person at the gate of your own depths.

So those who love must try to act as if they had a great work to accomplish: they must go into themselves and gather and concentrate themselves; they must work; they must become something. For the more we are, the richer everything we experience is. And those who want to have a deep love in their lives must collect and save for it, and gather honey.

Vows

Rabbi: NotFroofy and 2dBride, I now invite you to join hands and make your vows, in the presence of your family and friends gathered here.

NotFroofy: I, NotFroofy, take you, 2dBride, 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, till death us do part.

2dBride: I, 2dBride, take you, NotFroofy, 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, till death us do part.

Exchange of Rings

NotFroofy:

Harei at m'yuchedet li bikdushah.

With this ring I thee wed, with my body I thee honor, and with all my worldly goods I thee endow.

2dBride:

Harei at m'yuchedet li bikdushah.

With this ring I thee wed, with my body I thee honor, and with all my worldly goods I thee endow.

Nuptial Blessing

Y'varekh'kha Adonai v'yishm'rekha, ya-er Adonai panav elekha vichunekha, yisa Adonai panav elekha v'yasem l'kha shalom.

May these two be blessed and kept against harm.
May they be sustained in good times and bad.
May they have peace in their lives.

Seven Blessings (Sheva Brachot)

1.  (On the wonders of the world)

Barukh attah Adonai Eloheinu melekh ha-olam she-ha-kol bara likhvodo.

Blessed is the wonder of creation, the earth, the provider of all things.  May you be inspired each day by the abundance of the natural world, by science and technology, as well as art, music, literature, and creative expression.

2. (On the spirit of humanity)

Barukh attah Adonai Eloheinu melekh ha-olam yotzer ha-adam.

Blessed is the essence of humankind.  People have the capacity for love and friendship, generosity, kindness and compassion. May you express these qualities freely and be blessed to receive them through your lives.

3. (On the diversity of humanity)

Barukh chakham ha-razim. She'ein da'atam domeh zeh la'zeh v'ein pirtzufam domeh zeh la-zeh v'ha-kadosh Barukh hu yode'a ma b'lev kulam

Blessed is the design of humankind.  The diversity of humanity is remarkable: out of the same basic shape, infinite variations. May you find comfort in the similarities shared by all of the world’s cultures and celebrate the qualities which make us different.

4. (On a better world)

Barukh attah Adonai Eloheinu melekh ha-olam ha-tov v'ha-meitiv.

Blessed is the joy of this gathering.  Despite its blessings, we live in a broken world. May you be blessed to live in a world where the there is food for those who are hungry, homes for those who are homeless, freedom for those who are oppressed, and peace and equality for all.

5. (On the joy of love)

Sameach t'samach re'im ha-ahuvim barukh attah Adonai m'sameach ba'alat ha-brit u-ba'alat ha-brit.

Blessed is the joy of lovers.  Today we celebrate with 2dBride and NotFroofy as they freely unite in marriage. May you live in a world where this freedom is extended to all couples, allowing anyone to marry without judgment, impediment, or persecution.

6. (On rejoicing)

Barukh attah Adonai Eloheinu melekh ha-olam asher bara sason v'simchah, chatan v'kalah, gilah rinah ditzah v'chedvah, ahavah v'achavah v'shalom v're'ut. Barukh attah Adonai, m'same'ach ba'alat b'rit im ba'alat b'rit.

Blessed is the joy of gladness and celebration.  With the breaking of the glass today’s ceremony will end and celebration begin. As we shout “Mazel Tov” let us wish good luck for the brides and make this wish for ourselves and our loved ones: May every day be full of happiness, love, friendship, harmony, laughter and rejoicing.

7. (Over wine)

Baruch ata Adonai Eloheinu melech ha-olam borei p'ri ha-gafen.

Blessed is the human capacity for joy, embodied in the symbol of wine.  The ritual drinking of wine sanctifies Jewish celebrations and expresses the happiness of all involved.  May you find something to celebrate every day of your life, and may your cup runneth over.

Breaking of the Glass

As we all know, the world is not a place of shalom, of wholeness and peace. The world has been shattered into fragments by violence and injustice. As we hear the glass shatter, we are reminded of this shattered world, and of the power your love has to make the world a better place, to heal some of those fragments.

Pronouncement of Marriage

Now by the authority vested in me by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and in the presence of these witnesses, I declare you married under the laws of Massachusetts and the traditions of Moses and of Israel, and join with this happy company in wishing you every success and every joy in the days ahead.

Kiss The Brides!