The Ceremony begins:


Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to the handfasting of MG&cleo. I welcome you with these words:

It is fitting and appropriate that you, the families and friends of MG&cleo be here to witness and to participate in theirHandfasting, for the ideals, the understanding, and the mutual respect which they bring to their marriage have their roots in the love, friendship, and guidance you have given them.

MG&cleo have chosen this spot to announce their love and commitment for each other, to the world. This place was chosen for its beauty and openness, two wonderful qualities that this location has in common with the commitment that will be spoken here today.

To make this relationship work, therefore, takes more than love. It takes trust, to know in your hearts that you want only the best for each other. It takes dedication, to stay open to one another, to learn and grow, even when it is difficult to do so. And it takes faith, to go forward together without knowing what the future holds for you both. While love is our natural state of being, these other qualities are not as easy to come by. They are not a destination, but a journey.

May theirs always be a shared adventure, rich with moments of serenity, as well as excitement; vital with problems that test, as well as successes that lift; marked by a sense of personal freedom, as well as mutual responsibility.

May they find in each other companionship as well as love; understanding as well as compassion; challenge as well as agreement.

May the home they establish be an island where the pressures of a cluttered world can be sorted out and brought into focus; where accumulated tensions can be released and understood; where personal needs do not tower over concern for others and where the immediate does not blur more distant goals; where the warmth of humor and love puts both crisis and dullness into perspective.

And above all, may they find an ever richer meaning and joy in the high adventure of lifelong loving and learning together.

Exchange of Vows

Calling the witness to come closer...

Officiant: Who is the bride's witness to these vows....

The witness gives his or her name in reply....scented rose

Officiant: Who is the groom's witness to these vows...

The witness gives his or her name in reply....Alan

The Ribbons
You have been invited to attend a handfasting, you may be wondering what to expect.

There is an ancient Celtic tradition of binding a couple as a symbol that they are bound together not just for a lifetime, but for eternity.

A handfasting is a promise made by two people to be bound to each other through the tribulations of life.

The "handfasting" itself is when the bride and groom's wrists are tied together to symbolize their union. The Marriage vows are said to each other during the time these cords are applied to the couple's wrists/hands.

The tying of the knot symbolizes their commitment to their union.

"Tying the knot did not start out being an abstract term; the lovers' knot that binds two hands together represents an indissoluble union, and the tying of a knot is still practiced in various ways by different peoples as a symbol of love, affection, faith, friendship, and duty."

The ribbons symbolize the continuity of life: Two ends, each with its own character, are actually one. When they come together to be joined, they formally show us that they are committed to their love and their relationship.


The couple will now make promises and vows to one another. Let these promises hold them fast when life is rough and rocky; (displaying the 5 colored ribbons) let these ribbons bind their hearts, hands and lives together.


Presents the Green ribbon to Sarah to tie on the wrists

The color Green symbolizes earth, representing the physical and material. As Sarah ties the green ribbon onto your wrists, please repeat together after me:

“With this Green ribbon I promise to live with you always, to share all in the material world I have with you. We are partners in life and love, and we will always work together for the best of our lives together.”


Presents the Yellow ribbon to Alan to tie on the wrists

The color Yellow symbolizes air, representing all that is intellectual and mental. As Alan ties the yellow ribbon onto your wrists, please repeat together after me:

“With this Yellow ribbon I promise to communicate as clearly as I am able, to share my thoughts with you, to share my hopes and dreams, as well as my fears and insecurities. I promise to be open to hear you whether the words be good news or bad. I promise to always look for the good in your words.


Presents the Red ribbon to myself to tie on the wrists

The color Red symbolizes fire, representing the power and passion in your relationship. As I tie the red ribbon onto your wrists, please repeat together after me:

“With this Red ribbon I promise to always feed the fire of our physical passion, to never take you for granted and to always remember who you are, to treat you as my lover, to always be open to your expression of your love, and to share myself totally with you.


Presents the Blue ribbon to Rose to tie on the wrists

The Blue ribbon symbolizes water, representing the emotional and love. As Rose ties the blue ribbon onto your wrists, please repeat together after me:

“With this Blue ribbon I promise my heart will always be open to you, to love and respect you, to always put you first in my life, to always consider your feelings when making decisions and to put our relationship as the first priority before all else.


Presents the White ribbon to Hannah to tie on the wrists

The White ribbon symbolizes Spirit, representing the spiritual and philosophical in life. As Hannah ties the white ribbon onto your wrists, please repeat together after me:

“As everything in life is a circle, so is our love. There is no beginning and no end. We have been here before, and someday we will return. We are two, and we are the same. Today and forever, with this White ribbon I promise this will never change.”

Two entwined in love, bound by commitment and fear, sadness and joy, by hardship and victory, anger and reconcilliation, all of which brings strength to this union. Hold tight to one another through both good times and bad, and watch as your strength grows.

MG&cleo as your hands are bound together now,
so your lives and spirits are joined in a union of love and trust.

MG&cleo have choose to give each other these personal vows:

"I love you more than I did yesterday.. but not as much as I will tomorrow...

Removal of Ribbons / Ring Exchange
But you cannot always be physically bound together, and therefore the exchange of rings is one of the deepest symbols of a marriage. To give a ring to someone you love is to say that your love has no beginning and no end.
It is a constant reminder, of the shared love between a man and a woman and of their vows to each other.



Best man and Maid/Matron of Honor...

Will you now hold out the rings entrusted to you by MG&cleo? Let your hands beneath ever serve as a symbol of how cleo&MG and their marriage are supported upon the earth by the love of their friends and family as blessed from above.”

Ring Blessing

Rings are an ancient symbol, blessed and simple.

Circles… a symbol of the unbroken circle of love. Love freely given has no beginning and no end, no giver and no receiver-- for each is the giver and receiver.

Therefore, may these symbols remind you of your love, and of the vows you have taken.

Ring personal Vows/Exchange:

This ring I give you is a sign of my promises, made to you on our wedding day.

Please wear this ring as a symbol of the love we have for each other, so the world will know that I am yours and you are mine.


Celtic Loving Cup Ceremony

We are now going to perform the ancient Celtic Loving Cup Ceremony.

On this your wedding day, we celebrate the Celtic spirit of the anam cara. Anam cara is translated from the Gaelic as "soul friend". By entering in a partnership with your anam cara, you are joined in an ancient and eternal way with this person whom you most cherish. In everyone's life, there is a great need for an anam cara and so I ask you to toast one another by repeating the following.

I'll hand the cup to you both here

(The bride and groom hold the loving cup as they repeat the following)

Bride/Groom (in unison)
Today I recognize you, my anam cara.
And ask you that you become a part of me, in sacred kinship.
With you I will share my innermost self, my mind and my heart.
With you, I have lost all fear and have found the greatest courage.
I have learned to love and let myself be loved.
With you, I have found a rhythm of grace and gracefulness.
Love has reawakened in life; a rebirth; a new beginning.
With you, my anam cara.
I am understood.
I am home.

And now, please drink to the love you've shared in the past.

(The couple takes turns sipping from the loving cup)

Drink to the love in the present, on this your wedding day.

(The couple drinks)

And drink to your love in the future and forever more.

(The couple drinks)

The Celts believed that the way you view your future actually shapes it. I now ask everyone here in this space to take a moment to visualize a future for the bride and groom. As a group, let's think of the happiness in store for MG&cleo. Let's put their joyous future out to the universe.

(A moment of silence is taken).

I will place the cup back on to the table here

I will pick up the coins here

The Unity Coins are a contemporary vision that have come to symbolize material wealth for the newlyweds and their future family: the Groom recognizes his responsibility as a provider, and pledges his ability to support and care for her. Acceptance by the bride means taking that trust and confidence unconditionally with total dedication and prudence. Today's couples embrace life and face the world together in a more mutually supportive way than ever before.

Originally, there was an understanding of husband as "bread winner" and wife as "home maker" so the coins were given and received not in a spirit of reciprocity but in a give/take relationship.

The "Unity Coins" designs have influences from all over the world, including the "Celtic Marriage Knot" (which is on the backside of each coin), the Adinkra the Asante people of Ghana and Ivory Coast symbol for Wisdom, and the Chinese "Yin & Yang," to name a few.

Each coin is different and represent one of thirteen universal tenets of marriage:

Love ~:~ Harmony ~:~ Cooperation ~:~ Commitment ~:~ Peace ~:~ Happiness ~:~ Trust ~:~ Respect ~:~ Caring ~:~
Wisdom ~:~ Joy ~:~ Wholeness ~:~ Nurturing

Hold the coins in your hands as a sign that your blessings will no longer be held separately, but together...

These are the beginning of your possessions, those that will come from heaven; the material things that life offers to you, and all that I hope you both will acquire for the happiness of your home. These are a symbol of the blessings that you have received here on Earth and a hint of the blessings that await for you in your future. These are but tokens to remind you of your love and my vision for your future, and as symbols of your union.

I will place the coins back on the table here...

Standing in front of and facing the couple, the MC speaks the following words:

"D/s is a lifestyle choice whereby people live their lives opting by nature to be either Dominant or submissive. In a relationship the one complements the other, and is based upon the submission of one to another, and the giving of mutual respect and absolute trust

Firstly it says that you belong together. The compatibility that you both feel for each other is obvious. Together you have made a choice to share your innermost thoughts and to fulfill the needs of each other. The placing of the collar is representative of the mental bond that must exist between you.

Next it tells us that you have chosen a way of life that few have the courage to explore. Your journey is just beginning. Never be afraid to tell each other what you feel, what you think, what you like, or dislike. To be able to do this is vitally important as you learn about each other, and grow together.

To you, the Dominant I say: never forget the responsibility that you have undertaken here. You are charged with the well being of your submissive in all you do. Your decisions will affect her in every way. Her life is literally in your hands. Do not shy away from that responsibility but use the power you have been given wisely. Never consider only yourself. Remember that your submissive will follow wherever you go. Do not lead her into danger and be mindful that she will look to you in all things for guidance and teaching. Learn from your submissive what is good for them, and be prepared to give as much, or more than you receive from her .

(takes up Dominants hand)

The Master's hand is a double edged sword. It can give pleasure and it can punish. The Master must never forget that, and must consider every facet of any situation before using that power. It must never be used in anger, and must always be justifiable.

To you, the submissive I say: having chosen to submit to this Dominant you must never feel inferior. True submission is something that few ever receive, so remember that what you have offered is a treasure, to be kept safe by your Dominant. Walk beside Him and be proud of what you are. To be a submissive makes you no less worthy in this relationship.

(takes up submissive's hand, palm upwards) I take your hand and show it palm upwards to denote your submission, which should be to this One only…( places Dominants hand palm down over submissive's hand) and remind you that you have pledged to submit to your Master in all things. Never be afraid to speak out. In times of trouble look to your Master , and run to Him, not away.

Finally I urge you both: Have patience with each other and remember there will be bad times as well as good. Love each other, always, and demonstrate that love as often as you can and in as many ways as you can.

Be well, and above all be safe."

To the Bride and Groom:
May your life together be a source of strength and inspiration to yourselves, your families, your friends, and to all whose lives you touch.

To the Guests:
You all have been given the pleasure of witnessing this very special occasion that formally announces the Handfasting of MG&cleo.

Now they have spoken their vows to each other and given their promises. They both now wear the rings of love on their hands and in their hearts.

Inasmuch as Paul and Jen have declared their love and devotion to each other before family and friends, I now greet them with you as husband and wife.

Congratualtions you may kiss to seal your vows.

Beannachdan na Bainnse -- Blessings on your Marriage

Let the Ceili begin!*

*Ceili - pronounced kay'-li - is a Gaelic word for party!