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  • Writer's pictureRebecca

Planning your big day - Ceremony Format

A brief description of The Marriage ceremony format.

Please note: The legal aspects are bold and by law are to be included within the wedding ceremony.

The Introduction

Can include a welcome to your guests, introduces the bridal party as well as an explanation on the meaning of the marriage to yourselves.

Giving away (Optional - Not legally required)

Although the brides father traditionally gives away the bride, other people can be included such as mother or both parents or even son or daughter. Other family members or friends may also be request to give the bride to the care of the groom in unison “WE DO”

Authorisation (“Monitom”)

It is a requirement of the marriage act 1961, that I, your celebrant use a given definition of my authority with which to conduct the ceremony, and also the nature of the marriage relationship.

I, Rebecca Mitchell-McCoy am duly authorized by law to solemnize marriages according to law. Before you are joined in marriage in my presence and in the presence of these witnesses, I am to remind you of the solemn and binding nature of the relationship into which you are now about to enter. Marriage, according to law in Australia, is the union of two people to the exclusion of all others, voluntarily entered into for life.

The Asking (Optional - Not legally required)

If you wish I can ask each of you whether you will take each other to be husband and wife or partners. Traditionally it is responded with “I do”.


This is where the bride and groom exchange their vows and make their legal commitment to each other.

The minimum wording required legally:

“I call upon the persons here present, to witness, that I, First name, Middle name, surname (family name), take you, first name, middle name, Surname (Family name) to be my lawful wedded wife/husband.

Options to this are to leave the middle name (if applicable) out. Or if during the introduction if your full names are stated then you can leave the Surname (Family name) out and only use the first and middle names.

Symbolic exchange/ Ring exchange (Optional - Not legally required)

You can exchange rings if you wish with a choice of wording to be included. I can provide a choice of wording to choose from explaining the meaning/symbolism of the ring exchange. Some couples chose to exchange other items as well or instead of the ring and they can include a single rose, jewellery or photo.

Ceremonial Ritual

Other rituals that can be included into the ceremony that represent aspects of the couple’s lives, such as second marriage, or children from previous relationships. These rituals can be sand blending, candle lighting or personal readings to the children or even hand tying.


These can be done anytime during the ceremony and by any person you chose. I have an extensive range for you to choose from or you can write your own.


This will include commentary of good wishes for your future and will conclude with an announcement by myself declaring you to be husband and wife or partners. This final response can be followed by a kiss to seal your marriage though individual and cultural wishes are respected. And the kiss doesn’t have to be made.


The signing of the marriage registry and other documents are completed here taking a short time.

Final (unless discussed otherwise)

The couples are then presented formally with their certificate with me addressing the guests in a manner with which they are comfortable, such as “It gives me great pleasure in presenting Mr and Mrs Smith”.

Presentation & Conclusion

This gives the bridal party the opportunity to make a final bridal presentation, during which the couple walks through the guests to the rear accepting congratulations. This point will be discussed and co coordinated during our prior appointments. Did You Know...

That the marriage certificate is only proof of marriage and not proof of your choice of surname? You may like to apply for a registered marriage certificate for formal proof of marriage. This may assist you when changing names with various organisations. You are able to apply for this certificate at any stage after the ceremony from Birth Deaths and Marriages. You will need to complete a form, obtainable on line from and supply suitable required identification as per the Registry of Births, Deaths & Marriages (of which the values of each identification item may change from time to time).

Professional Organisations

To view Celebrants Code of Conduct please go to


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