Non-religious readings and poems often feature in humanist ceremonies — and vow renewal ceremonies are no exception. Some couples choose uplifting and humorous poems, others choose a classic or modern love poem, but for some couples, something more specific is needed…
If you’ve faced serious illness, time apart, or other stressful situations as a couple, and are now wanting to celebrate your relationship with a renewal ceremony, your humanist celebrant can help you find a poem or reading that expresses how you are feeling about renewing your vows and what you mean to one another.
Here are a few ideas…
Love is friendship caught fire; it is quiet, mutual confidence, sharing and forgiving. It is loyalty through good and bad times.
It settles for less than perfection, and makes allowances for human weaknesses. Love is content with the present, hopes for the future, and does not brood over the past.
It is the day-in and day-out chronicles of irritations, problems, compromises, small disappointments, big victories, and working toward common goals. If you have love in your life, it can make up for a great many things you lack.
If you do not have it, no matter what else there is, it is not enough.
Happiness in marriage is not something that just happens.
A good marriage must be created.
In marriage the little things are the big things.
It is never being too old to hold hands.
It is remembering to say “I love you” at least once a day.
It is never going to sleep angry.
It is at no time taking the other for granted; the courtship should not end with the honeymoon, it should continue through the years.
It is having a mutual sense of values and common objectives.
It is standing together facing the world.
It is forming a circle of love that gathers the whole family.
It is doing things for each other, not in the attitude of duty or sacrifice, but in the spirit of joy.
It is speaking words of appreciation and demonstrating gratitude in thoughtful ways.
It is not looking for perfection in each other.
It is cultivating flexibility, patience, understanding and a sense of humour.
It is having the capacity to forgive and forget.
It is giving each other an atmosphere in which each can grow old.
It is a common search for the good and the beautiful.
It is establishing a relationship in which the independence is equal,
dependence is mutual and the obligation is reciprocal.
It is not only marrying the right partner;
it is being the right partner.
This is the art of marriage
Wilferd Arlan Peterson
It is often said that it is love that makes the world go round. However, without doubt,
it is friendship which keeps our spinning existence on an even keel.
True friendship provides so many of the essentials for a happy life — it is the
foundation on which to build an enduring relationship, it is the mortar which bonds us
together in harmony, and it is the calm, warm protection we sometimes need when
the world outside seems cold and chaotic.
True friendship holds a mirror to our foibles and failings, without destroying our sense
of worthiness. True friendship nurtures our hopes, supports us in our
disappointments, and encourages us to grow to our best potential.
Bride and Groom came together as friends. Today, they pledge to
each other not only their love, but also the strength, warmth and, most importantly,
the fun of true friendship.
‘I Love You’ means that I accept you for the person that you are, and that I don’t wish to change you into someone else. It means that I do not expect perfection from you, just as you don’t expect it from me.
‘I Love You’ means that I will love you and stand by you even through the worst of times. It means loving you when you are in a bad mood or too tired to do the things I want to do. It means loving you when you are down, not just when you’re fun to be with.
‘I Love You’ means that I know your deepest secrets and do not judge you for them, asking in return only that you do not judge me for mine. It means that I care enough not to let you go. It means thinking of you, dreaming of you, wanting and needing you constantly, and hoping you feel the same way for me.
‘I Love You’ means forever.
Deanne Laura Gilbert
Masons, when they start upon a building,
Are careful to test out the scaffolding;
Make sure that planks won’t slip at busy points,
Secure all ladders, tighten bolted joints.
And yet all this comes down when the job’s done
Showing off walls of sure and solid stone.
So if, my dear, there sometimes seem to be
Old bridges breaking between you and me
Never fear. We may let the scaffolds fall
Confident that we have built our wall.
If you’re thinking of having a humanist wedding vow renewal ceremony and would like to talk to a celebrant near you, you can find your ideal celebrant via our online map.
Your ceremony will focus on your love story. It can include unique vows, readings, poems, and any symbolic acts you choose.
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There are exciting times ahead as you choose your humanist celebrant and plan a personalised wedding that's unique to you.