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The 52 page Ministers Ceremonies Guide  is at bottom of this page you may copy and paste the ebook to word pad or note pad or your computer, or you may just come back here to this page any time you like. Be sure to save this page in your favorites because it is not lsted in menu of TCOLW web page . We will be adding more information and links to help you and your ministry.

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  Ministers Ceremonies Guide 

Before performing any marriage the Minister must insist on counseling the couple to be married. You as a Minister of God must obide by certain moral and Biblical laws. The counseling session's should be 2 to 3 each appoximately 1 hour each. The time will be taken up in questions and answers. Start every counseling session with a Prayer. Invite God into the session. Ask Him to inspire every thought every question and every answer. The object for counseling is for you to know for sure that this couple understands the committment they are making. That it is one that is to be for Life. If you sence that there is a lack of that committment then you should not perform that marriage until that committ is there. End every couseling session with a prayer.

Some reason not to perform a marriage

1. The couple must not be related, the safe way no blood relationship at all.

2. Not a long enough engaugement. The couple must have enough time together to know one another.

3. We are Ministers of God and we should not perform marriages between believers and unbelievers.

4. One or both of the couple must not have a record of Divorce and remarriage. Remember God hates Divorce. Making a mistake once in a marriage that ends in divorce can of course be repented of, but should not happen over and over again and you as a minister of God do not want to be part of that cycle of sin. Believe it or not some people get married with the idea that if it does not work out, no damage done will just get a divorce.

5. You must not be in the marriage business like some so called ministers are. The service that you perform is a Holy One not to be cheapened by a minister who performs one marriage service then moves on to the next one, some time in the same day.

6. You as a minister must never perform the married unprepared. The couple will need to know every detail of the actual marriage what is expected of them to do and to say. This is why you must have a wedding rehearsal. Only the marriage ceremonie itself needs to be rehearsed. You must make sure that is done to the finest detail so that the couple to be married and the rest of the wedding participents know exactly what is going to happen and when it is going to happen. Do not jump into performing a marriage unless you know exactly what you are doing. Remember you are the one in charge, all will be looking to you as a professional who is in charge.  Start with small weddings, maybe even a family member or friends.

7. You Must not perform the ceremonie unless you have the Marriage License in hand on the day before you peform the wedding. That way you will know ahead of time, and be sure you get all the advice you can from those where you obtain the License from in your state or city clerk. When you must have the license returned by and to whom do you take it to.

Below is a web site that has a few good tips for the couple to read to know for sure if they are right for one another. You as a minister should read over these sights as well. It will give you some insight on what questions you should ask the couple to be married.

http://www.cbn.com/family/marriage/elliott_How-to-know-for-sure.aspx

God's purpose for Marrige

http://www.southshoreweddings.com/topic/066.htm

                   
 
Performing a Wedding

The wedding ceremony can be a very short service or a long service depending on what you may want. There are many different types of ceremonies to choose from. Below are some of the many that you may choose from.


SERVICE #1

The bride and groom are asked in turn if they accept each other as husband and wife. They each must answer "yes" or "I do".

The couple then exchange rings if they wish. Then they say, "With this ring, I thee wed". Then the ring is put onto the finger.

Then the couple are pronounced man and wife.

It is that simple.

SERVICE #2

Traditional Marriage Ceremony

 

Opening

Minister States: Dearly Beloved and Privileged Guests: We are gathered here today before God to join together this man and woman in Holy Matrimony, being first ordained of God signifying the union that exists between Christ and his Church and is therefore not to be entered into lightly and with much consideration.

If anyone can show just cause why this man and woman may not be lawfully joined togehter, let them now speak or forever hold their peace.

 

Vows

Minister says to the Groom. Do you _Groom's Name_take _Bride's Name_to be your lawfully wedded wife, to have and to hold, in sickness and in heath, in good times and bad, for richer or poorer, forsaking all others to keep yourself unto her, so long as you both may live? The Groom responds, "I Will"

Say to the Bride. Do you _Bride's Name_take _Groom's Name to be your lawfully wedded husband, to have and to hold, in sickness and in heath, in good times and bad, for richer or poorer, forsaking all others to keep yourself unto him, so long as you both may live? The Bride responds, "I Will"

Minster asks: "Who gives this woman to be married to this man?"

Exchange of the Rings

The Minister receives the wedding bands and holds them in his hand.
The
Groom takes hold of the left hand of the Bride with his right hand.
The Minister blesses the
Bride's ring by stating; "Bless, O Lord, this ring, that he who gives it and she who wears it may abide in Thy peace, and continue in Thy favor, unto life's end; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen."

The ring is then given to the
Groom as he holds the left hand of the Bride.

The Minister states to the Groom, repeat after me:

I _your name_ take you __Bride's name_ to be my wedded wife,

to have and hold from this day forward,
for better or for worse,
for richer or for poorer,
in sickness and health,
to love and to cherish,
till death us do part,
according to God's holy ordinance,
of which I do pledge my love.

The Minister instructs the Groom to place the Brides ring on the fourth finger of her left hand and holding the ring in this position to repeat; "With this ring I thee wed, In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen"

The Bride

The Bride takes hold of the left hand of the Groom with her right hand.
The Minister blesses the
Groom's ring by stating; "Bless, O Lord, this ring, that she who gives it and he who wears it may abide in Thy peace, and continue in Thy favor, unto life's end; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen."

The ring is then given to the
Bride as she holds the left hand of the Groom.
The Minister states to the Bride, repeat after me:
I _your name_ take you __Groom's name_
to be my wedded husband,

to have and hold from this day forward,
for better or for worse,
for richer or for poorer,
in sickness and health,
to love and to cherish,
till death us do part,
according to God's holy ordinance,
of which I do pledge my love.

The Minister instructs the
Bride to place the Groom's ring on the fourth finger of his left hand and holding the ring in this position to repeat; "With this ring I thee wed, In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen"
Minister Prayer

Declaration of Marriage

Minister states; As much as you have each pledged your commitment of love and devotion, I now pronounce you husband and wife, in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

[Groom's name]__________________, You may kiss your bride!
By the authority vested in me by the State of ___________ I pronounce you husband and wife.
"What God has joined together, let nobody put asunder."

 

The Formal Ceremony or Traditional Wedding number 2


Dearly beloved,
We are gathered together here in the sight of God and in the face of this company to join together this man and this woman in holy matrimony; which is commended of St. Paul to be honorable among all men; and therefore is not by any to be entered into unadvisedly or lightly; but reverently, discreetly, advisedly, and soberly; into this holy estate these two persons present come now to be joined. If any man can show any just cause why they may not be joined together, let him speak now or forever hold his peace.

Minister To The Groom: Wilt thou have this woman to be thy wedded wife, to live together after God's ordinance, in the holy estate of matrimony? Wilt thou love her, comfort her, honor, and keep her, in sickness and in health; and, forsaking all others, keep thee only unto her, so long as ye both shall live?

Groom Answers: "I Do" or "I Will"

Minister To The Bride: Wilt thou have this man to be thy wedded husband, to live together after God's ordinance, in the holy estate of matrimony? Wilt thou love him, comfort him, honor, and keep him, in sickness and in health; and, forsaking all others, keep thee only unto him, so long as ye both shall live?

Bride Answers: "I Do" or "I Will"


Groom Repeats These Words After The Minister: I___________ take thee____________ to be my wedded 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, til death us do part, according to God's holy ordinance; and thereto I plight thee my troth.

Bride Repeats These Words After The Minister: I ___________ take thee______________ to be my wedded husband, to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better or for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, til death us do part, according to God's holy ordinance; i plight thee my troth.


At This Time The Rings Are Produced: The minister takes the rings and prays; O Lord, Hear our prayer for groom's name, and bride's name , who today are united in marriage before you. We ask your blessing on these rings which they give to each other as their symbol of love and devotion. We ask this in Jesus name. AMEN.


At this point the minister has the groom take the bride's ring and place it on her finger while repeating the words, "With this ring, I thee wed".

The minister then has the bride take the groom's ring and place it on his finger while repeating the words, "With this ring, i thee wed".

Minister then asks for prayer in the following manner: Our father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name; thy kingdom come; thy will be done; on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. AMEN.

O Eternal God, Creator and Preserver of all mankind, giver of all spiritual grace, the author of everlasting life; send thy blessings upon these thy servants, this man and this woman, whom we bless in thy name; that, as Isaac and Rebekah lived faithfully together, so these persons may surely perform and keep the vow and covenant between them made, and may ever remainin perfect love and peace together, and live according to thy laws; through Jesus Christ our Lord. AMEN.

The minister now joins the right hands together and says: "Those whom God hath joined together, let no man put asunder".

For as much as (Groom name) and (Bride's name) have consented together in holy wedlock and have witnessed the same before God and this company, and thereto have given and pledged their troth, each to the other, and have declared the same by giving and receiving a ring, and by joining of hands; I pronounce that they are husband and wife, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. AMEN.



SERVICE #3


Dear family and friends, we are gathered today, in the sight of God and the presence of you who witness this celebration, to join (groom's name) and (bride's name) in the holy union of marriage. This is an honorable estate which has been established and blessed by God. It mirrors the mystical union which joins Jesus Christ to His Holy Church. It is to be entered with much serious thought, reverence and in the knowledge that God Himself is not only watching but will bless this union. It is this holy union that these two persons come now to be joined.

(the pastor addresses the couple)

(Groom) and (Bride), I charge you both, as you stand before God, to remember that love and loyalty to God and each other will serve as the foundation of a happy and successful home. If you keep as sacred the solemn vows which you are about to make, and if you continually attempt to do the will of God your heavenly Father, your life as individuals and as a couple will be filled with joy and peace. Your home will be blessed by God's presence and guidance. If, however, you choose to ignore your vows either by thought or action, you will find no peace or harmony in anything you do. No human connection can be fulfilling than that of two people who share the comforts and endure the trials of a loving relationship. No vows are more sacred nor more binding than those to which you will now swear.

(Groom), will you have (Bride) to be your wedded wife, to live together in this holy union of marriage? Will you love her, comfort her, honor and protect her, in sickness and in health, and leaving all others behind, share yourself only with her as long as you both shall live?

(Groom answers)

I will.

(Bride), will you take (Groom) to be your wedded husband, to live together in this holy bond of marriage? Will you love him, comfort him, honor and protect him, in sickness and in health, and leaving all others behind, share yourself only with him as long as you both shall live?

(Bride answers)

I will.

(Groom), please repeat these vows to your bride.

I, (groom's name), take you, (bride's name), to be my wedded 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; until death parts us; this I solemnly swear; before Almighty God.

(Bride), please repeat these vows to your groom.

I, (bride), take you (groom), to be my wedded husband; 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; until death parts us; this I solemnly swear; before Almighty God.

(the pastor then asks)

D you bring visible symbols of the covenant which you will now enter?

(the couple answers together)

We do.

(The pastor is handed the rings, which he holds up and says,)


May these rings always remain a symbol of the covenant which you now make; and may your love be as endless as the circle in which these rings are formed.

(Groom), place this ring on (bride's name) finger and repeat after me,

(the pastor hands the ring to the groom)

I give you this ring; as a symbol and promise; of my undying love; and my everlasting faithfulness.

(The groom places the ring on the bride's finger. The pastor then hands the ring to the bride and says,)

(Bride), place this ring on (groom's name) finger and repeat after me;

I give you this ring; as a symbol and promise; of my undying love; and my everlasting faithfulness.

(The pastor then turns to the guests and asks)

Will you be in prayer with me?


God our Father, creator of every living being, giver of all spiritual grace; we ask that You let your blessings be upon (groom) and (Bride), whom we bless in your name. Give them the strength and will to perform and keep the vows and covenant they have just made. Surround them with Your love and guidance, that they may live together in faithfulness and patience, in wisdom and true Godliness. May their home be a haven of blessing and a place of peace. These things we ask in the name of Jesus, our Christ. AMEN>

(pastor addresses the guest)

As (groom) and (bride) have now agreed to the covenant of marriage and have expressed the same before God and witnesses, and who have promised their faithfulness to each other, symbolizing their covenant by the joining of hands, and exchanging of vows and rings; by authority granted to me as a minister of God's church, and a representative of the state of ___________, I now pronounce that they are husband and wife together, in the name of God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. And in the name of our great God, who has joined these two together in marriage, I charge that no man nor woman shall seek to dissolve, disrupt, or intrude upon this holy union.

(pastor addresses the witnesses)

(Groom) and (Bride) are aware that they will be filling the dual role of one family under God, and yet separate personalities under the same roof. As they together light the candle that represents their home, and their oneness as a family, they will also leave lit the candles that represent their individuality. Each light will lend its radiance to the light of the other candles, even as their home, and their individual identities, will be enhanced by the other.

(pastor addresses the witnesses)

May the Lord bless you and keep you; may the Lord make His face to shine upon you and your home, and be gracious to you and your family: may the Lord lift up His countenance upon you and give you peace. AMEN.

(Groom), you may now kiss your bride.

(pastor turns to guests and says,)

Ladies and gentleman, it is my pleasure to introduce, for the first time, Mr. and Mrs. (groom's full name).

(end of ceremony)


SERVICE #4


Pastor -- Who gives __________ to be married to __________?

Bride's Father -- Her Mother and I do.

Guests seated
Challenge to Bride and Groom
__________ and __________, our God of love has established marriage as the symbol of Christ's perfect relationship to His Body, the Church. We have come to bring you as one before Him. __________ God has ordained the man as the spiritual head, as the responsible provider, and as the initiator of love in this human relationship. By His enablement, your strength must be _______'s protection, your character her boast and pride, and you must so live that she will find in you the haven for which the heart of a woman truly longs.

__________, it is God's purpose that you be a loving wife, that you respond to ________'s love in tenderness with a deep sense of understanding, through a great faith in Christ who brought you together. It is His desire that you have that inner beauty of soul that never fades; that eternal youth that is found in holding fast the things that never age.

__________ and __________ ,Christian marriage is not living merely for each other; it is two uniting and joining hands to serve God. Seek His kingdom first, and His righteousness, and He will add all other things to you. Do not expect perfection from each other, perfection belongs solely to God. You need not minimize each other's weaknesses, but always be swift to praise and magnify each other's points of comeliness and strength and see each other through kind and patient eyes.

God will lead you into such situations as will bless you and develop your characters as you walk together. He will give you enough tears to keep you tender, enough hurts to keep you compassionate, enough of failure to keep your hands clenched tightly in His, and enough success to make you sure you walk with Him. May you never take each other's love for granted, but always experience that wonder that exclaims "Out of all this world you have chosen me." When life is done, may you be found then as now, hand in hand, still thanking God for each other. May you ever serve Him happily, faithfully, together until you return to glory or until at last one shall lay the other into His arms. And all this through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Vows
Pastor -- __________ have you in the quiet hours of your companionship considered what is your Christian duty as a husband?

Groom -- I have.

Pastor -- __________ have you in the quiet hours of your companionship considered what is your Christian duty as a wife?

Bride -- I have.

Pastor -- _________ and _________, you stand before us as the children of God, redeemed through Jesus Christ. Is it your purpose to establish a home that is truly Christ-centered, where the Word of God is read and obeyed; a home that is welded together by prayer in which the Holy Spirit is your constant guide?

Bride & Groom -- It is.

Pastor to groom -- And now, in token that your hearts are joined together in love, will you please join your right hands.

__________, this woman whom you hold by the hand is to be your wife. She has given you one of the most sacred things under heaven: a woman's life and a woman's love. You may bring her great joy or cause her deep sorrow. It is not what you bring her in a material way that will make true happiness--riches without love are nothing. The gift without the giver is bare. The practice of those virtues as husband that you have shown as her lover will keep her heart won to your heart. Do you vow here, as you have promised __________ that you will be true and loyal, patient in sickness, comforting in sorrow, and forsaking all others, keep yourself only unto her so long as you both shall live?

Groom -- I do.

Pastor to bride -- __________, this man whom you hold by the right hand is to be your husband. On your life, your love and devotion he will lean for strength and inspiration. He is going to look to you for encouragement, for cheerfulness and confidence. No matter what the world may say or think, people may forget him, lose confidence in him, and turn their backs upon him, but you must not. May your life and your love be the inspiration that will constantly lead him to greater dependence upon our Lord Jesus Christ. Do you vow here, as you have promised __________ that you will be loyal in adversity, ministering to him in affliction, comforting him in sorrow, and forsaking all others, keeping yourself only unto him so long as you both shall live?

Bride -- I do.

Pastor -- You may now share your vows with each other.

Presentation of couple
Recessional


SERVICE #5


Opening Remarks
Dearly beloved, we are gathered here in the sight of God, and in the presence of this company, to unite ___________ and ___________ in holy matrimony. Marriage was ordained by God in Eden and confirmed in Cana of Galilee by the presence of the Lord Himself, and is declared by the inspired Apostle Paul to be honorable among all men. It is therefore, not to be entered into unadvisedly or lightly; but reverently, soberly and in the fear of God. It is fitting, therefore, that we should on this occasion, begin by asking God's blessing on this marriage service. Let us pray.

Presentation of Bride
Pastor -- Who gives this woman to be married to this man?

Bride's Father -- Her mother and I do.

To the Congregation
Marriage is a joyous occasion. It is connected in our thoughts with the magic charm of home, and with all that is pleasant and attractive as being one of the most important events of our lives. It its sacredness and unity it is like the mystical relation between Christ and His Church and is therefore the most significant and binding covenant known in human relations.

From the Story of Creation in the book of Genesis: For God created man in His own image . . . then the Lord formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being . . then the Lord God said, "It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make a helper fit for him" . . . So the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and while he slept took one of his ribs, and closed up its place with flesh. And the rib which the Lord God had taken from the man He made into a woman and brought her to the man. Then the man said, "This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man." Therefore a man leaves his father and his mother and cleaves to his wife, and they become one flesh.

Again, let us hear the Word of God from the New Testament, the writings of Paul: "Live life then with a due sense of responsibility, not as men who do not know the meaning and purpose of life but as those who do. Make the best use of your time, despite all the difficulties of these days. Don't be vague but firmly grasp what you know to be the will of our Lord. Thank God at all times for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. And 'fit in with' each other, because of your common reverence for Christ."

"You wives must remember to adapt yourselves to your husbands, as you submit yourselves to the Lord, for the husband is the 'head' of the wife in the same way that Christ is the Head of the Church and Savior of His body . . . but remember, this means that the husband must give his wife the same sort of love that Christ gave to the Church when He sacrificed Himself for her . . .

In practice what I have said amounts to this: Let every one of you who is a husband, love his wife as he loves himself, and let the wife honor and love her husband."

To the Bride and Groom
It is your duty, ___________, to be to ___________ a considerate, tender, faithful, loving husband: to support, guide and cherish her in prosperity and trouble; to thoughtfully and carefully enlarge the place she holds in your life; to constantly show to her the tokens of your affection, to shelter her from danger, and to cherish for her a manly and unalterable affection, it being the command of God's Word, that husbands love their wives, even as Christ loved the Church and gave His own life for her.

It is your duty, ___________, to be to ___________ a considerate, tender, faithful, loving wife; to counsel, comfort and cherish him in prosperity and trouble; to give to him the unfailing evidences of your affection; to study, as time passes to make the place he holds in your heart, broader and deeper; to reverence and obey him, and to put on the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is, in God's sight, an ornament of great price. His Word commanding that wives be subject unto their own husbands even as the church is subject unto Christ, and forsaking all others to cling to him with a love which fails not as long as you both shall live.

Let me charge you both to remember, that your future happiness is to be found in mutual consideration, patience, kindness, confidence, and affection. It is the duty of each to find the greatest joy in the company of the other; to remember that in interest as in affection you are to be henceforth one and undivided.

Wedding Vows
If you are ready to assume the obligations and duties before God, as I have defined them, you will unite your hands and pledge your love and your lives to each other.

Pastor -- Do you, ___________, standing in the presence of God and these witnesses, solemnly pledge your faith to ___________ . Do you promise to live with her according to God's ordinance in the holy estate of matrimony; do you promise to love her, comfort her, honor, and keep her, in sickness and in health, and forsaking all others, keep yourself only unto her, and through God's grace to promise to be to her a faithful and devoted husband as long as you both shall live?

Groom -- I do.

Ring Vows
Pastor to Groom -- ________ , have you a token of your love for ___________ ?

(The best man hands the ring to the Minister.)

Pastor to Bride -- ________ , do you receive this ring in pledge of the same on your part?

Bride -- I do. (Groom puts ring on bride's finger.)

Pastor to Bride -- ________ , have you a token of your love for ___________ ?

(The maid of honor hands the ring to the minister.)

Pastor to Groom -- ________, do you receive this ring in pledge of the same on your part?

Groom -- I do. (Bride puts ring on groom's finger.)

The wedding ring is the outward and the visible sign of an inward and spiritual bond which unites two hearts in endless love. The circle, the emblem of eternity; the gold, the type of what is least tarnished and most enduring--it is to show how lasting and imperishable is the faith now pledged. Let the ring, a fit token of that which is unending, continue to be to you both a symbol of the value, the purity, and the constancy of true wedded love, and the seal of the vows in which you have both pledged your most solemn and sacred honor.

Pronouncement
By the authority committed unto me as a Minister of the Gospel of the Church of Christ, I declare that ___________ and ___________ are now husband and wife, according to the ordinance of God and the law of the State of ___________ , in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, Amen.


SERVICE #6

Opening Remarks
Dearly Beloved, we are assembled here in the presence of God, to join ___________ and ___________ , in holy marriage; which is instituted of God, regulated by His commandments, blessed by our Lord Jesus Christ, and to be hold in honor among all men. Let us therefore reverently remember that God has established and sanctified marriage, for the welfare and happiness of mankind. Our Savior has declared that a man shall leave his father and his mother and cleave unto his wife.

By His apostles, He has instructed those who enter into this relation to cherish a mutual esteem and love; to bear with each other's infirmities and weaknesses; and to comfort each other in sickness, trouble, and sorrow; in honesty and industry to provide for each other, and for their household, in temporal things; to pray for and encourage each other in things which pertain to God; and to live together as the heirs of the grace of life.

Prayer
Giving away of bride
Pastor -- Who gives ___________ to be married to ___________ ?

Father of the Bride -- Her mother and I do.

Pastor -- No other human ties are more tender, no other vows are more sacred than these you are about to assume. You are entering into the holy estate which is the deepest mystery of experience, and which is the very sacrament of divine love.

Pastor to Groom -- ___________, will you have ___________ to be your wedded wife, to live together after God's ordinance in the holy estate of matrimony; will you love her, comfort her, honor and keep her, in sickness and in health, and forsaking all others keep yourself only for her so long as you both shall live?

Groom -- I will.

Pastor to Bride -- ___________, will you have ___________ to be your wedded husband, to live together after God's ordinance in the holy estate of matrimony; will you love him, comfort him, honor and keep him, in sickness and in health, and forsaking all others, keep yourself only for him so long as you both shall live?

Bride -- I will.

Wedding Vows
Pastor -- ___________, will you repeat your vows?

Groom repeats vows.

Pastor -- ___________, will you repeat your vows?

Bride repeats vows.

Ring Vows
Pastor to groom -- ___________, what token do you give of the vows you have made?

Groom -- This ring

Pastor -- Bless this ring, O Lord, that he who gives it and she who wears it may abide in Thy peace, and continue in Thy favor, unto their life's end; through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.

Groom to Bride -- ___________ I give you this ring as a pledge of the sincerity of my vows. (Groom places ring on bride's finger.)

Pastor to Bride -- ___________, what token do you give of the vows you have made?

Bride -- This ring.

Pastor -- Bless this ring, O Lord, that she who gives it and he who wears it may abide in your peace, and continue in your favor, until their life's end, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Bride to Groom -- ___________ I give you this ring as a pledge of the sincerity of my vows. (Bride places ring on groom's finger.)

Pastor -- The Soul of marriage can be a trusting place where two people can come together from the struggles of the world and feel safe, accepted, and loved . . . or it can be a battleground where two egos are locked in a lifelong struggle for supremacy, a battle which is for the most part invisible to the rest of the world. If you are to have the first in your marriage you must work toward it by cultivating your mutual interests and aspirations.

Pronouncement
Pastor -- Forasmuch as ___________ and ___________ have consented together in holy wedlock, and have witnessed the same before God and this company, by the authority committed unto me as a minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, I declare that ___________ and ___________ are now Husband and Wife, according to the ordinance of God, and the law of the State of ____________: in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

(Pastor asks bride and groom join right hands) Whom therefore God hath joined together, let no man put asunder.

Pastor -- The Lord bless you, and keep you. The Lord make His face to shine upon you, and be gracious unto you; the Lord lift up His countenance upon you, and give you peace: both now and in the life everlasting. Amen.

Introduction
And now it is my happy privilege to congratulate and introduce to you Mr. and Mrs. _________. I further charge you as a Christian man and woman, to invite Jesus Christ to take His rightful place as Lord of your lives, individually and together. You are not to live selfishly as single persons do, protecting their own rights, making their own plans, but rather the Apostle tells us "Be subject to one another out of reverence for Christ," and truly, the more each of you loves Jesus Christ, the richer will be your love for one another. He tells us what that love is like with the words from I Cor. 13:4-8a.

"Love is patient and kind; love is not jealous or boastful; it is not arrogant or rude. Love does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrong, but rejoices in the right. Love bears all thing, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails."

Benediction
Recessional


SERVICE #7

Introductory remarks
Friends, we come together in this holy place to share with ___________ and ___________ a most important moment in their lives. Marriage was instituted by God in the Garden of Eden when He saw that it was not good for man to be alone. Christ beautified marriage with His presence in Cana of Galilee when He wrought His first miracle. It is commended by the Apostle Paul who likened it to the holy union which exists between Christ and His Church, in which our Lord Jesus is called the Bridegroom and His Church, the Bride.

Opening Remarks
We have been invited to hear ___________ and ___________ promise to face the future together as husband and wife. __________ and _________, you must recognize that this covenant is more than a legal contract. This is a bond of union made in heaven. It is to be entered into with reverence. You are about to assume mutual relationships and responsibilities and to promise undying devotions. Nothing is easier than saying words, nothing harder than living them day by day.

Love between a Christian man and wife means caring as much about the welfare and happiness of your marriage partner as about yourself. You will be looking in the same direction together. Burdens will be lighter because you divide them. Joys will be more intense because you share them. No other human tie is more tender, no other vows more sacred than these you are about to assume. Now as you stand in the presence of God, you must remember the responsibilities of a Christian man and wife.

Wedding Vows
Pastor to Groom -- ___________, you are to love ___________ as Christ loved the Church. You are to be the head of your wife. You are to respect and comfort her. Will you take ______ for your wife?

Groom -- I will.

Pastor to Bride -- ___________, your duty as a Christian wife is to submit to ___________. You are to be his helpmate. You are to obey, serve, and honor him. Will you this day take ___________ as your husband?

Bride -- I will.

Prayer
Giving away of Bride
Pastor -- Who is bringing ___________ to be united to ___________?

Father of the Bride -- Her mother and I.

Pastor to Bride's Parents -- Mr. and Mrs. ___________ are you willing now and always to support and strengthen this marriage by upholding ___________ and ___________ with your concern?

Bride's Parents: We are.

Pastor to Groom's Parents: Mr. and Mrs. ___________ are you willing now and always to support and strengthen this marriage by upholding ___________ and ___________ with your concern?

Groom's Parents: We are.

Ring Vows
Pastor -- ___________ and ___________, do you have tokens of the sincerity of these vows?

Bride and Groom -- We do.

Pastor to Groom -- What token do you give of the vows you have made?

Groom -- This ring.

Pastor -- Bless this ring, O Lord, that he who gives it and she who wears it may abide in Thy peace, and continue in Thy favor, unto their life's end; through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.

Groom to Bride -- ___________ I give you this ring as a pledge of the sincerity of my vows. (Groom places ring on bride's finger.)

Pastor to Bride -- ___________, what token do you give of the vows you have made?

Bride -- This ring.

Pastor -- Bless this ring, O Lord, that she who gives it and he who wears it may abide in your peace, and continue in your favor, until their life's end, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Bride to Groom -- ___________ I give you this ring as a pledge of the sincerity of my vows. (Bride places ring on groom's finger.)

Pastor -- You, ___________ and ___________ have pledged your devotion to each other. It is not these words that have made your marriage real, but the God of love, who has welded your hearts together as one. He has said, "For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother and shall be joined unto his wife and the two shall become one flesh."

Pronouncement
Ministering in the name of the Lord Jesus, I now pronounce you husband and wife. May Christ be the Head of your home. May He be the unseen Guest at every meal, the Listener to every conversation. May Christ's love rule your hearts and lives.

Introduction
Ladies and Gentlemen, may I present to you: Mr. and Mrs. ___________

Recessional


SERVICE #8


Opening remarks
Friends, we have been invited here today to share with ___________ and ___________ a most important moment in their lives. In the time they have been together their love and understanding of each other has grown and matured. Now they have decided to live their lives together as husband and wife.

Parents and people are seated
We have been invited to hear ___________ and ___________ as they promise to face the future together, accepting whatever may lie ahead. For the world that God has created for them, with its beauty and grace that is all around, with the strength that it offers and the peace that it brings, makes them truly grateful.

___________ and ___________, nothing is easier than saying words and nothing harder than living them day after day. What you promise today must be renewed and decided again tomorrow. At the end of this ceremony legally you will be man and wife, but you still must decide each day that stretches out before you, that you want to be married.

Real love is something beyond the warmth and glow, the excitement and romance of being deeply in love. It is caring as much about the welfare and happiness of your marriage partner as about your own. But real love is not total absorption in each other; it is looking outward in the same direction --together. Love makes burdens lighter, because you divide them. It make joys more intense because you share them. It makes you stronger so you can reach out and become involved with life in ways you dared not risk alone.

Both sets of parents stand
Pastor -- Who brings ___________ to stand beside ___________ ?

Bride's parents -- We do.

Pastor to both sets of parents -- Parents, are you willing, now and always to support and strengthen this marriage by upholding both ___________ and ___________ with your love and concern?

Both sets of parents respond -- We are.

Pastor -- Then you, you may be seated.

Wedding Vows
Pastor to Groom -- ___________, will you take ___________ to be your wife? Will you love and respect her? Will you be honest with her always? Will you stand by her through whatever may come? Will you make whatever adjustments are necessary so that you can genuinely share your life with her?

Groom -- I will.

Pastor to Bride -- ___________ will you take ___________ to be your husband? Will you be honest with him always? Will you stand by him through whatever may come? Will you make whatever adjustments are necessary so that you can genuinely share your life with him?

Bride -- I will.

Ring Vows
Pastor to Groom -- ___________, what token do you give of the vows you have made?

Groom -- A ring. (Groom repeats his ring vows and places ring on bride's finger.)

Pastor to Bride -- ___________, what token do you give of the vows you have made?

Bride -- A ring. (Bride repeats her ring vows and places ring on groom's finger.)

Pastor:___________ and ___________ ,we have heard you promise to share your lives in marriage. We recognize and respect the covenant you have made. It is not a minister standing before you that makes your marriage real, but the honest and sincerity of what you have said and done here before your friends and relatives in the sight of God.

Pronouncement
Forasmuch as ___________ and ___________ have consented together in holy wedlock, and have witnessed the same before God and this company, by the authority committed unto me as a Minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, I declare that ___________ and ___________ are now husband and wife, according to the ordinance of God and the law of the State of ___________: in the name of the Father, and the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen. Whom therefore God hath joined together, let no man put asunder.

Now the ceremony is over and the experience of living day by day as married people is about to begin. Go forth to meet it, gladly, love life so it will love you. May blessings of God be with you.

Introduction
I now present to you Mr. and Mrs. ___________

Recessional

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State By State Marriage Laws

ALABAMA

Any licensed minister of the gospel in regular communion with the Christian church or society of which he is a member may perform marriages. Also, marriages may be performed by the pastor of any religious society according to the rules of the religious society. --- Ministers must provide a certificate of the marriage to the judge of probate within one month after the marriage. --- For questions see the clerk for the judge of probate.

ALASKA

The minister, priest or rabbi of any church or congregation in the state may perform marriages. --- Ministers must provide marriage certificates to the couple married and report the marriage to the Marriage Commissioner.

ARIZONA

Any licensed or ordained clergyman may perform marriages. --- Ministers must record the marriage on the marriage license and return it to the clerk of the Superior Court within 20 days after the marriage. - -- For questions see the clerk of the Superior Court.

ARKANSAS

Any regularly ordained minister or priest of any religious sect or denomination may perform marriages. --- Ministers must have their ordination credentials filed by the county clerk who will then issue a certificate to the minister. --- The marriage license must be completed by the minister and returned to the county clerk within 60 days from the date the license was issued. --- For questions see the county clerk.

CALIFORNIA

Any priest, minister, or rabbi of any religious denomination, of the age of 18 years or over may perform marriages. --- Ministers must complete the marriage license and return it to the county clerk within 4 days after the marriage. --- For questions see the county clerk.

COLORADO

Marriages may be performed by any minister. --- Ministers must send a marriage certificate to the county clerk. --- For questions see the county clerk.

CONNECTICUT

All ordained or licensed clergymen belonging to this state or any other state may perform marriages as long as they continue in the work of the ministry. -- - Marriage license must be completed by the minister and returned to the city or town clerk. --- For questions see the city or town clerk.

DELAWARE

Any ordained minister of the gospel and every minister in charge of a recognized church may perform marriages. --- Ministers do not need to be licensed to perform marriages but they must report their name and address to the local registrar in the district in which they live. --- Ministers must keep the marriage license or a copy for at least one year. Also, the minister must, within 4 days, complete and return forms required by the State Board of Health to the clerk of the peace. --- For questions see the clerk of the peace.

FLORIDA

All regularly ordained ministers of the gospel in communion with some church may perform marriages. --- Ministers must complete a certificate of marriage on the marriage license and return it to the office from which it was issued. --- For questions see the county clerk.

GEORGIA

Any minister who is authorized by his or her church may perform marriages. --- Ministers must complete a certificate of marriage and return it to the ordinary within 30 days after the marriage. --- For questions see the ordinary's clerk at the county courthouse.

HAWAII

Any minister may perform marriages if they are authorized by their church to do so. --- Ministers must obtain a license from the department of health before performing marriages. -Ministers must keep a record of all marriages they perform. Ministers must report all marriages they perform to the department of health. --- For questions see the department of health.

IDAHO

Marriages may be performed by priests or ministers of the gospel of any denomination. --- Ministers must give a marriage certificate to the bride and to the groom. Also, the minister must complete the license and marriage certificate and return it to the recorder who issued it within 30 days after the marriage. --- For questions see the county recorder.

ILLINOIS

Marriages may be performed by ministers of the gospel in regular standing in the church or society to which they belong. --- The marriage license and certificate must be completed by the minister and returned to the county clerk within 30 days after the marriage. --- For questions see the county clerk.

INDIANA

Ministers of the gospel and priests of every church throughout the state may perform marriages. ---Ministers must return the marriage license and a certificate of marriage to the clerk of the circuit court within 3 months after the marriage. ---For questions see the clerk of the circuit court.

IOWA

Ministers of the gospel who are ordained by their church may perform marriages. --- Minister must give a certificate of marriage to the bride and to the groom. Also, the minister must report the marriage to the clerk of the district court within 15 days after the marriage. -For questions see the clerk of the district court.

KANSAS

Any ordained clergyman of any religious denomination or society may perform marriages. --Ministers are required to file credentials or ordination with the judge of a probate court before performing marriages. --- Minister must return the marriage license and a certificate of marriage to the probate judge who issued the marriage license within 10 days after the marriage. --- For questions see the clerk of the probate court.

KENTUCKY

Marriages may be performed by any minister of the gospel or priests of any denomination with any religious society. --- Ministers must be licensed before performing marriages. See the local county clerk for a license. --- Ministers must return the marriage license and marriage certificate to the county clerk within 3 months after the marriage. --- It is illegal to solicit marriages. --- For questions see the county clerk.

LOUISIANA

Ministers of the gospel or priests of any denomination in regular communion with any religious society may perform marriages. --- Ministers must register with the clerk of the district court of the parish or with the health department if in New Orleans. --- After performing a marriage, the minister must complete a marriage certificate and return it to the clerk of the district court. --- For questions see the clerk of the district court.

MAINE

Ordained ministers of the gospel may perform marriages. --- Ministers must be licensed by the secretary of State before performing marriages. Application may be made to the town clerk or treasurer. There is a $5 fee. --- After the marriage, the minister must file a copy of the record of marriage with the town clerk. --- For questions see the town clerk.

MARYLAND

Any minister of the gospel authorized by the rules and customs of their church may perform marriages. --- Minister must complete the marriage license and marriage certificate and give one certificate to the couple. Another certificate and the license must be returned to the clerk of the Court of Common Pleas within five days after the marriage. --- For questions see the clerk of the Court of Common Pleas.

MASSACHUSETTS

Ordained ministers of the gospel may perform marriages. --- Before performing marriages, ministers are required to apply for a certificate from the state. For applications write to: The Commonwealth of Massachusetts, Office of the Secretary, Supervisor, Commissions Division, State House, Boston, Massachusetts 02133. You must file a copy of your ordination certificate and a statement from the church saying that you are in good standing. Please let us know well in advance if you need a statement from us. --- Ministers must keep records of all marriages they perform. Also, ministers must return a certificate of the marriage to the town clerk or registrar who issued the marriage license and to the town clerk of the town where the marriage was performed. --- For questions see the town clerk or registrar or write to the Secretary of State.

MICHIGAN

A minister of the gospel who is ordained or authorized by his or her church to perform marriages and who is a pastor of a church in this state, or continues to preach the gospel in this state may perform marriages. --- Ministers must complete a marriage certificate and give one to the couple. Another marriage certificate must be returned to the county clerk who issued the license within 10 days after the marriage. --- For questions see the county clerk.

MINNESOTA

Any licensed or ordained minister of the gospel in regular communion with a religious society may perform marriages. --- Ministers must file a copy of their credentials of ordination with the clerk of the district court of any county. --- Ministers must give a marriage certificate to the bride and groom and also file a certificate with the clerk of the district court in the county which issued the marriage license. --- For questions see the clerk of the district court.

MISSISSIPPI

Any ordained minister of the gospel who is in good standing with his or her church may perform marriages. --- Ministers must send a certificate of marriage to the clerk who issued the marriage license within three months after the marriage. --- For questions see the clerk of the circuit court.

MISSOURI

Marriages may be performed by any clergyman who is a citizen of the United States and who is in good standing with any church or synagogue in this state. --- Ministers must keep a record of all marriages they perform. They must give the couple a marriage certificate and must complete the marriage license and return it to the recorder of deeds within 90 days after the marriage license was issued. --- For questions see the recorder of deeds.

MONTANA

Ministers of the gospel of any denomination may perform marriages. --- Ministers must complete and return a marriage certificate to the clerk of the district court within 30 days after the marriage. Also the minister must provide marriage certificates to the bride and groom upon request. ---For questions see the clerk of the district court.

NEBRASKA

Any ordained clergyman whatsoever, without regard to the sect to which they belong may perform marriages. --- Ministers must report marriages they perform to the county judge who issued the marriage license within 15 days after the marriage. Also the minister must provide marriage certificates to the bride and groom upon request. --- For questions see the county clerk.

NEVADA

Any ordained minister in good standing with his denomination, whose denomination is incorporated or organized or established in the State of Nevada may perform marriages. --- Ministers are required to complete a complicated procedure to obtain a certificate of permissions to perform marriages. Among other requirements, the applicant's ministry must be primarily one of service to his congregation or denomination and his performance of marriages must be incidental to such service. See the county clerk for applications, and for any questions you may have.

NEW HAMPSHIRE

Marriages may be performed by any ordained minister of the gospel who resides in the state and is in good standing with his church. Ministers not residing in the state may obtain permission to perform a marriage upon application to the Secretary of State. --- Ministers must send a copy of the marriage certificate to the town clerk. ---For questions see the town clerk.

NEW JERSEY

Every minister of every religion may perform marriages. --- Ministers must complete a certificate of marriage and return it to the county clerk. --- For questions see the county clerk.

NEW MEXICO

Any ordained clergyman whatsoever, without regard to the sect to which he or she may belong may perform marriages. --- Ministers must provide the county clerk with a marriage certificate within 90 days after the marriage. --- For questions see the county clerk.

NEW YORK

Marriages may be Performed by a clergyman or minister of any religion. However, a 1972 court case said that in order for a marriage to be valid, the minister must have an actual church or at least a stated meeting place for worship or any form of religious observance. --

Ministers do not have to be licensed except that before performing marriages in New York City, the minister must register his or her name and address in the office of the city clerk of the city of New York. --- Ministers must complete a marriage certificate and return it to the town or city clerk who issued the marriage license within 5 days after the marriage. --- For questions see the town or city clerk.

OHIO

Any ordained or licensed minister of any religious society or congregation within this state may perform marriages. --- Before performing a marriage, ministers must present their ordination credentials to the probate judge of any county. The judge will provide the minister with a license to perform marriages. The minister must then present his license to the probate judge in any county in which he performs a marriage. ---Ministers must send a certificate of marriage to the probate judge of the county which issued the marriage license within 30 days after the marriage. --- For questions see the clerk of the probate court.

NORTH CAROLINA

Any ordained minister of any faith who is authorized to perform marriages by his church may do so. --- ministers must complete the marriage license and return it to the register of deeds who issued it. --- For questions see the register of deeds.

OKLAHOMA

Ordained ministers of the gospel of any denomination who are at least 18 years of age may perform marriages. --- Ministers must file a copy of their credentials with the county clerk before performing marriages. ---Ministers must complete a certificate of marriage and return it to the clerk or judge who issued the marriage license. --- For questions see the clerk of the county court.

NORTH DAKOTA

Ordained ministers of the gospel and priests of every church may perform marriages. --- Ministers must file a certificate of marriage with the county judge who issued the license within 5 days after the marriage. Certificates must also be given to the persons married. --- For questions see the county clerk.

OREGON

Ministers of any church organized, carrying on its work, and having congregations in this state may perform marriages in this state if authorized by their church to do so. --- Before performing marriages, ministers must file their credentials with the county clerk of the county in which they reside or in which the marriage is to be performed. --- Ministers must give the bride and groom a marriage certificate upon request. Also, the minister must send a marriage certificate to the county clerk who issued the marriage license within one month after the marriage. --- For questions see the county clerk.

PENNSYLVANIA

Ministers of any regularly established church or congregation may perform marriages. Also, persons may marry themselves if they obtain a certificate from the clerk of the orphans' court. --- Ministers must provide a certificate of marriage to the bride and groom. Also, they must send a marriage certificate to the clerk of the orphans' court who issued the marriage license within 10 days after the marriage. --- For questions see the clerk of the orphans' court.

RHODE ISLAND

Everyone who has been, or is, the minister of any society professing to meet for religious purposes, or incorporated for the promotion of such purposes, and holding stated and regular services, and who has been ordained according to the customs and usage's of such society may perform marriages. --- Ministers must obtain a license from the city or town clerk before performing marriages. --- Ministers must endorse and return the marriage license to the town or city clerk in which the marriage was performed. --- For questions see the town or city clerk.

SOUTH CAROLINA

Ministers of the gospel who are authorized to administer oaths in this state may perform marriages. --- Ministers must complete the marriage license and give one copy to the parties and the other two must be returned to the county judge of probate who issued it within 15 days after the marriage. --- For questions see the county judge of probate or his clerk.

SOUTH DAKOTA

Marriages may be performed by a minister of the gospel, or priest of any denomination. --- Ministers must provide the bride and groom with marriage certificates upon request. Ministers must also keep a record book of all marriages they perform. Finally, the minister must send a marriage certificate to the clerk who issued the marriage license within 30 days after the marriage. --- For questions see the clerk of courts.

TENNESSEE

All regular ministers of the gospel of every denomination, and Jewish rabbis, more than 18 years of age, having the care of souls may perform marriages. --- Ministers must endorse the marriage license and return it to the clerk of the county court within three days after the marriage. ---For questions see the county clerk.

TEXAS

Ordained Christian ministers and priests; Jewish rabbis and persons who are officers of religious organizations and who are duly authorized by the organization to conduct marriage ceremonies may perform marriages. --- Ministers must complete the marriage license and return it to the county clerk who issued it within 30 days after the marriage. --- For questions see the county clerk.

UTAH

Ministers of the gospel or priests of any denomination who are in regular communion with any religious society may perform marriages. ---Ministers must provide a certificate of marriage to the county clerk who issued the marriage license within 30 days after the marriage. --- For questions see the county clerk.

VERMONT

Ordained ministers residing in this state may perform marriages. Non-resident ordained ministers may perform marriages with the permission of the probate court of the district within which the marriage is to take place. --- Ministers must complete the marriage license and certificate of marriage and return it to the clerk's office from which it was issued within ten days from the date of the marriage. --- For questions see the town clerk.

VIRGINIA

Ministers of any religious denomination may perform marriages. --- Before performing marriages, ministers must provide proof of their ordination and proof that they are in regular communion with their church to the circuit court of any county or city or to the corporation court of any city in this state. The judge will then authorize the minister to perform marriages provided the minister obtains a bond in the amount of 500 dollars. --- Ministers may receive a fee of no more than 10 dollars for performing a marriage. ---Ministers must complete the marriage certificate and return it to the clerk who issued the marriage license within five days after the marriage. --- For questions see the clerk of the county circuit court or the clerk of the corporation court.

VIRGIN ISLANDS

Clergymen or ministers of any religion, whether they reside in the Virgin Islands or elsewhere in the United States may perform marriages. ---Ministers must complete the marriage license and return it to the clerk of the municipal court which issued the license within 10 days after the marriage is performed. --- For questions see the clerk of the municipal court.

WASHINGTON

Regularly licensed or ordained ministers or any priest of any church or religious denomination anywhere within the state may perform marriages.--- Ministers must send two certificates of marriage to the county auditor within 30 days after the marriage. --- For questions see the county auditor.

WASHINGTON, D.C.

Ordained ministers of the gospel may perform marriages. --- Marriage licenses are addressed to the minister who will perform the ceremony. The minister must complete a marriage certificate for the bride and for the groom and return another certificate to the clerk of the District of Columbia Court of General Sessions within 10 days after the marriage. --- For questions see the clerk of the Court of General Sessions.

WEST VIRGINIA

Any minister, priest or rabbi, over the age of eighteen years, may perform marriages. --- Before performing marriages, ministers must provide proof of their ordination to the clerk of any county court. The clerk will then provide the minister with an order authorizing them to perform marriages. --- Ministers must return the completed marriage license to the county clerk who issued it on or before the fifth day of the month following the marriage. --- For questions see the clerk of the county court.

WISCONSIN

Any ordained clergyman of any religious denomination or society may perform marriages. --

-Before performing marriages, ministers must file their credentials of ordination with the clerk of the circuit court in the county in which their church is located. The clerk will give the minister a certificate. --- Ministers must complete the marriage certificates and give one to the bride and one to the groom. The original must be returned to the register of deed's of the county in which the marriage was performed or if performed in a city, to the city health officer. This must be done within 3 days after the marriage. --- For questions see the clerk of the circuit court.

WYOMING

Every licensed or ordained minister of the gospel may perform marriages. --- Ministers must give a marriage certificate to the bride and groom upon request and must return a certificate to the county clerk. -- - For questions see the county clerk.

 

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Baptism Ceremony

Baptism

Baptism is the first of the two sacraments of the Church. The second is the Lord’s Supper, which may not be taken without repentance and baptism. (see the paper . We are saved by grace through faith but we come under condemnation through breaking God's covenant law (Rom 5:20-6:19). We receive and retain God's Holy Spirit conditionally.

Along with preaching and teaching, baptism is part of the commission given to the Church of God.

Mark 16:15-16 15 And he said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to the whole creation. 16 He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.

Matthew 28:19 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit

Repentance

Repentance requires us to change and turn away from our former sinful manner of living and live in harmony with what God desires. It is not simple remorse, but a complete alteration to our code of conduct. If we give our ways to the Lord He will establish our thoughts (Prov 16:3).

Acts 2:38 Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy. (RSV)

We must repent and we must believe the gospel

of the kingdom of God. Together this produces

conversion and our willing participation so that

our sins may be blotted out (Acts 3:19). Unless

we repent we will perish. (Luke 13:1-5)

Baptism by immersion symbolises the death of our former way of life in sin, which is law or commandment breaking (1Jn 3:4). We must be immersed completely in water, and buried, so we will die unless raised out of the water, to life (Rom. 6:1-9). Coming out of a watery grave symbolises a resurrection to a new way of life (cf. the paper .

We are baptised into Christ Jesus (Rom 6:3) and not into any sect, denomination or church. This is into one body with many members (1Cor 12:13-14). We must be transformed (Rom 12:1-2) growing in grace and knowledge (2Pet 3:18) and bearing fruit (Gal 5:22-23) fit as the evidence, for repentance (see also the paper .

There is however a cost. This should be given thought, or counted, before this step of baptism, is taken (Luke 14:25-33).

All of humanity has sinned! We all must admit having sinned.

1John 1:8-10 8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

Recommended Ceremony for Baptism

The candidate is to be duly counselled for baptism beforehand and is to be baptised by immersion at an appropriate safe place.

This may be done prior to Passover or at the Feasts of the Lord, but may also be done at any time decided by the minister performing the ceremony.

The candidate is to be accompanied by the officer performing the ceremony who is to inspect the site for safety.

In the water the minister will say the following words (minus quotations):

State your full name:

********************

Do you believe that there is one God who is Father of all and one Lord Jesus Christ?

(cf. 1Cor 8:6; Eph 4:6)

Response: Yes.

********************

Have you repented of your sins?

(cf. Lk 13:3,11:32; Acts 3:19, 2:38)

Response: Yes.

*******************

Are you aware that you are dead in your sins and in need of the saving grace of Jesus Christ?

(cf. Rom 6:10-12)

Response: Yes

********************

Do you believe that Christ died to cover the debt for your sins?

(cf. 2Cor 5:21; Heb 10:14-17; Col 4:12-14).

Response: Yes

********************

Do you believe that Christ’s sacrifice was accepted by God and that He raised Christ from the dead?

(cf. Rom 10:9; Heb 10:10-12).

Response: Yes.

********************

Do you undertake to keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus Christ, the Messiah?

(cf. Rev. 12:17; 14:12).

Response: Yes.

********************

We now baptise you for the remission of sin.

The candidate is then to be told to cross his or her arms and hold his or her nose and the minister performing the ceremony is to place his hand behind the candidate for support and lower the person backwards into the water ensuring that the person is fully immersed.

The candidate may then be taken to dry ground, (which is preferable if there are a number to be baptised.) to kneel down and the minister(s) are to lay hands on the person’s head and say:

Eternal Father

We baptise this person (given name) by authority of and into your name and into the body of your son the Messiah, by and into the power of the Holy Spirit. Accordingly Father we request that the Holy Spirit is placed in this person in the name of your son Jesus Christ Amen.

The person is then to be given the charge as follows:

We hereby declare that you are baptised into the name of God our Father

(cf. Acts 2:39).

We baptised you into the body of His son Jesus Christ, the Messiah

(cf. Rom 12:4-5; Eph 4:4,12,16),

with others

(cf. 1Cor 12:12-27),

as his bethrothed

(cf. Rom 7:4; Rev19: 7-9).

You are not baptised into any sect or denomination.

You are baptised by authority of Jesus Christ and by the power of God's Holy Spirit

(cf. 2Cor 5.5; Rom 8:23; 1Cor 6:19; Heb 7:25).

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You can cause serious problems if you attempt to immerse infants or people who are dizzy, bedridden, infirm, or of advanced age, who have cardiac or respiratory problems, who are connected to medical equipment, who are unable to walk without assistance, or who might panic if they are immersed. In these cases, it is probably best to use pouring instead.

Take measures to avoid inadvertent nudity. Make sure that the baptismal clothing will not rise up in the water or become transparent when it is wet. You can purchase specially designed baptismal robes from your vestment supplier. They are made of white fabric that is opaque when wet and they have weights in the hems.

Prepare the Facilities

If your church building doesn’t have provisions for immersions and you are "borrowing" another congregation’s building, familiarize yourself in advance with the baptistery, the changing rooms, and the route to the changing rooms.

It takes a long time to fill a baptistery. It needs to be done early enough that the baptistery is full, and it needs to be done late enough that the water is not unbearably cold. Make sure that an experienced person takes care of it in time. If you are "borrowing" a church building, ask the host church to fill it for you. You don’t want to show up for the baptism to an empty baptistery because everybody thought that everybody else was filling it.

If you are improvising changing rooms, think of the the carpet and the windows. The candidates will be soaking wet and they will need privacy to change clothes. The route to the changing rooms should be reasonably short, private, and waterproof. (Imagine scuba divers tramping through the halls, and you get the idea.)

If your church doesn’t normally do baptisms by immersion and you are "borrowing" another congregation’s church, ask if you can borrow their baptismal robes also.

Prepare the Candidates

Have a dry rehearsal in advance.

Make sure the candidates know where the changing rooms are.

Make sure the candidates know the route between the changing rooms and the baptistery.

Tell the candidates that they should not rely on your strength to lift them up out of the water, especially if they are larger than you are. Tell them that they are supposed to lean back and stand up following your cues.

Tell the candidates how to prepare themselves.

If the church is supplying the baptismal robes, the candidates need to bring a towel and a change of underwear.

Since they will be changing clothes twice in a hurry, they should wear simple clothes. It’s probably best to avoid panty hose, corsets, girdles, cufflinks, tie clasps, garters, suspenders, and anything that takes a long time or requires an assistant.

Remind everyone that their heads will be underwater. On that day they need a hairdo that they can restore quickly with a towel and a brush or comb. There won’t be time for elaborate blow-dryer tricks.

Immerse the Candidates

Use your normal baptismal liturgy. These are only the steps for the actual immersion:

Stand next to the candidate in water that is at least waist deep but not more than chest deep.

The candidate should hold their nose with their left hand and grasp their left forearm with their right hand, or the reverse if they prefer.

Support the candidate by placing your left hand flat against the middle of their back and grab their arm above the middle of their chest with your right hand. You can do it the other way around if you prefer.

Use the baptismal formula in your service book, but don’t speak while the candidate is under water.

Normally it goes like this: Before you immerse the candidate, you say, "_____, I baptize you in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit." If there is any doubt about a previous baptism, you can say instead, "_____, if you are not already baptized, I baptize you in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit."

Guide the candidate as they lean backwards into the water and stand back up.

Continue your baptismal liturgy as usual.

If the water is shallow, such as in a creek or a stream, sit in the water with the candidate. Use the same procedure, except that the candidate bends forward face-first into the water.

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Scipture for the Lords supper

 

The Lord's Supper

 

Luke 22:17

And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and said, Take this, and divide it among yourselves:

Luke 22:18

For I say unto you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine, until the kingdom of God shall come.

Luke 22:19

And he took bread, and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me.

Luke 22:20

Likewise also the cup after supper, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood, which is shed for you.

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I Corinthians 11:23

For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread:

I Corinthians 11:24

And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.

I Corinthians 11:25

After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me.

I Corinthians 11:26

For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord's death till he come.

Excerpted from "King James Bible"

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Officiating The Lords Supper

To be administered as follows: The Elder, after reading the 11th Chapter of 1 Corinthians, verses 20 to 34, shall place one hand on the vessel containing the bread and the other hand on the vessel containing the wine and shall pray alone, ministers and deacons standing.

After consecration, then the minister may receive the communion first in both kinds himself, and then proceed to deliver the same to the other ministers in like manner (if any be present), and after that to the people also; in order, into their hands.

And when he delivers the bread he shall say: The body of our Lord Jesus Christ, which was given for thee, preserve thy soul and body unto everlasting life. Take and eat this in remembrance that Christ died for thee, and feed on him in thy heart, by faith, with thanksgiving.

And the minister that delivers the cup may say: The blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, which was shed for thee, preserve thy soul and body unto everlasting life. Drink this in remembrance that Christ's blood was shed for thee, and be thankful.

(If the consecrated bread or wine shall be all spent before all have communed, the Elder may consecrate more, by repeating the prayer of consecration.)

When all have communed the minister shall return to the Lord's table and place upon it what remaineth of the consecrated elements, covering the same with a fair, preferably white linen cloth.

Here the Elder may offer temporary prayer, concluding with this blessing. May the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, keep your hearts and minds in the knowledge and love of God, Jesus Christ, our Lord and his blessings be upon you in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen

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The Funeral Service

 

FUNERAL SERVICES

Funerals are not Biblical: In the days of the apostles, they carried the dead to their burial. No great show of expression was ;made. However we take advantage of it in order to reach the unsaved (the living). All that we do in these services is toward the living. Often many come from afar off, who have never heard the truth. We use this opportunity to get to them the truth of God.

The Saints are not to spend excessive time when they have to leave town to go and retrieve the dead, thus staying away from services.

When Funeral services are held, carry out as follows:

(a) Minister offers prayer

(b) Scripture is read

(c) Hymn

(d) Acknowledge Condolences

(e) Obituary is read

(f) Hymn

(g) Minister proceeds with message of salvation, not exceeding thirty minutes (30 min.).

Make it plain to the present congregation that you are not speaking to the dead, as they don't know that they ever existed. "and the message was preached to them while they lived, but the message is directed to them, (the living). So, they will have no excuse when they meet the Lord, Jesus Christ.

After the message is given, turn it over to the undertaker. The minister can commit body after the viewing, it is not necessary for the minister to follow the bier to the cemetery

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Example Funeral Service

 

Celebration Service Funeral

Prayer

_______ has gone on to her reward and we are here to celebrate with her. Celebrate? Yes, celebrate. The scriptures tell us that the death of one of His saints is precious in God's eyes. Precious because God sees death from His side. We only see it from this side. And this is the mortal side. Our eyes only see the end. Our minds immediately think of loss.

We have to remind ourselves of the great joy and happiness _______ is enjoying. It is as we mediate on her gain that we too can rejoice and be of glad heart. Seems strange to the world to use such words when speaking of death. But far from strange for those of the faith when one considers the relationship _______ had with her God through Jesus Christ.

_______ loved her Lord. Her Bible shows it. Almost every page show signs of her reading and studying. Verses are marked and high lighted. In a Legacy Book she stated that the greatest decision she made was given her life. She put it this way Accepting Christ as my Lord and Savior had more bearing on my life than any thing I ever did. She goes on, I had to see for myself that I wasn't suffice of myself and that I made too many mistakes (called sin) so that I came to the foot of the cross and saw what Christ did for me.

She wrote in her book that whenever there where decisions to be made she would go to God in prayer, read His Word and wait. If I don't wait I'm usually sorry I didn't. She allowed God to guide and led her. She leaned on the Lord for her strength and patience.

So, Jesus wasn't someone she accepted as her Savior and then forgot. No, Jesus was who she walked with every day. She lived her faith. She reared her children in the ways of the Lord. She set the example. She left all of you a greater heritage than you can ever imagine. It will only be as the years go by that you will become aware of just how great this heritage is.

Her greatest desire would be to see all her grand-children and great-grandchildren accept Jesus as their personal Lord and Savior. _______ has been enjoying a great reunion of loved one who have gone before. She will be there waiting for all of you to join in that reunion someday.

Remember I said dead is precious to God. Think of the excitement God must feel as He shows His children heaven for the first time. Can't you imagine the thrill and exhilaration that one's like _______ must have as their eyes behold what Jesus has prepared for them. "Eye hath not seen neither hath ear heard the things that God has prepared for them that love Him"

For all those that have received Jesus has their personal Savior and Lord.

 

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METHOD OF ANOINTING WITH OIL AND PRAYING FOR SICK

Oil is only to be used for fasting and praying for the sick. When anointing for fasting, pour oil on the hands and rub oil in the head. Oil should not be used for any other purpose. In praying for the sick, do not press too hard on the head of sick. Stomping is not necessary nor is loud welling encouraged. The Elder should anoint patient's forehead when praying for the sick.

HOW TO START A HOUSE CHURCH

More on The Worship Service

[Plus more ceremony outlines]

STYLE There are four basic styles of worship services practiced in the Christian Church of North America. There are other modifications of these four basic styles of worship that fill the areas between these four categories. There are no perfect or correct styles of worship. A congregation and the pastor should try to decide what is best for them.

a). "TRADITIONAL WORSHIP SERVICE"

1. Traditional liturgies

2. Singing Hymns

3. Readings & Recitations

4. Preaching

b). "CONTEMPORARY WORSHIP SERVICE"

1. Open Format (may use drama & dance)

2. Praise & Worship Choruses

3. Interactive participation

4. Preaching

c). "BLENDED WORSHIP SERVICE"

Elements of both traditional and contemporary

Use of Choruses and Hymns

Preaching or "having a talk"

d). "SEEKER SERVICE"

1. More entertainment oriented

No audience participation required

3. Minimal use of choruses

4. Non confrontive approach to presenting the gospel STRUCTURE

These are the typical outline or order of service for these different styles of services. They can obviously be modified to fit the individual and specific needs of that particular congregation.

Typical Traditional Service

Musical Prelude

Opening Invocation and/or Call to Worship

Hymn

Congregational Announcements

Hymn

Scripture Reading

Collection of the Offering

Musical Offertory or Choir Anthem

Pastoral Prayer and/or Blessing of the Offering

Scripture Reading

Hymn or Choir Anthem

Scripture Reading

Sermon or Pastoral Message

Closing Hymn

Pastoral Benediction

Musical Postlude

Typical Contemporary Service

Congregational Announcements

Special Musical Selection

Call to Worship (may include drama or dance)

Singing of Praise and Worship Choruses

Pastoral Prayer

Interactive Congregational Prayer and Testimony

Collection of the Offering

Special Musical Selection

Sermon or Pastoral Message

Invitation to Respond

Closing Song

Benediction

Typical Blended Service

Congregational Announcements

Call to Worship

Singing of Hymns

Collection of the Offering

Special Musical Selection

Singing of Worship Choruses

Pastoral Prayer

Special Musical Selection

Sermon or Pastoral Message

Invitation to Respond

Closing Song

Benediction

Typical Seeker Service

Special Musical Selection

Topical Drama

Special Musical Selection

Pastoral Talk

Prayer

Special Musical SelectionSERMON PREPARATION

Here is a practical spiritually sound outline to help you prepare your first or consecutive sermons together. 1). Pray to seek Gods will for what to speak about. Pray regularly and plenty in advance of the time that you will be preaching. It is very important to be willing to preach about anything God would impress on your heart to speak about.2). Select a topic that you feel God would want you to preach on for that particular group or congregation and at that particular time. Any good sermon is going to be applicable for the group of people you are going to minister to. 3). If you are not familiar with scripture related to that topic, use a concordance or Biblical topical reference book to assist you to find passages in scripture relating to the subject you have chosen. The following are helpful ways to study the Bible for personal spiritual growth and for researching sermon outlines;

STRONGS EXHAUSTIVE CONCORDANCE

The Strongs Concordance is considered by many theologians and Biblical scholars to be the key foundational tool that will help connect and better define various scripture passages. The Strongs contains three separate dictionaries (Hebrew, Chaldee & Greek) which bring definition to literally every word in the King James version of the Bible. You can use other translations of the bible, however the Strongs will work more efficiently with the King James. Some of the software that is available now for computers will automatically correlate the various English translations of the Bible into the Strongs word numbering system.

The Strongs takes every word in the King James version of the Bible back to its original text language (Hebrew, Chaldee or Greek) and assigns a number to it in what ever original language it is in.

The main concordance is found in the front of the Strongs. Every English word used in the King James Bible is listed in alphabetical order. Example: Jeremiah 5:9 Shall I not visit for these things? saith the LORD: and shall not my soul be avenged on such a nation as this? (KJV)

Lets say that we want to know more about the word "avenged" and how it is used in that passage of scripture. We would open our Strongs to the front part called the main concordance and look for the word "avenged". Once we find it in the alphabetical listing, it can be noticed that the word "avenged" is used 15 times in the entire King James Bible. Underneath the word avenged in the concordance we will find ever reference listed chronologically from the beginning of the Bible until the end of the Bible. Looking down a little ways we will see the Jeremiah 5:9 reference listed. Next to it will be printed phrase containing the word we are researching : "shall not my soul be avenged on such".

Immediately to the right of that phrase you will see a three or four digit number. This is called the word number. If the verse you are researching is in the Old Testament the word will be defined in the Hebrew or Chaldee dictionary towards the back of Strongs. If the verse you are researching is from the New Testament you will find the word defined in the Greek dictionary section of the Strongs. Simply go to the appropriate dictionary section of the Strongs and look for the numbered word (they are listed chronologically by number in the dictionary).

When you find the numbered word, many times there will be a phonetic breakdown of the word, showing you how to pronounce the word. Then there will be a brief and basic definition of the word and explaining how the word can be used as a noun, verb, pronoun, adjective, adverb etc. In the definition it might list other words from the same dictionary and the appropriate numbers for those words. It is very helpful to reference those words also to see how the word you are looking for could be more thoroughly defined or used. Example : the word "avenged" (from Jeremiah 5:9) is Strongs word 5358 "naqam" in the Hebrew dictionary section. The word is adequately defined as "to avenge or punish" with no other words referenced in its definition.

Another example would be the word "true" in 1 Timothy 3:1 This is a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work.(KJV) In the Strongs the word true is Greek word number 4103 "pistos" which is primarily defined as objectively trustworthy. It also says that it is derived from another greek word number 3982 "peitho", which means to convince through the use of an argument or analogy. Notice how much more depth the verse now has when you see the way the original text has a more layered definition.

Many times this layering affect of definitions will go two or three layers deep. It is very important to look at al of the meanings and definitions of the words that comprise the original word you are researching. You will notice how some of these will interlock and support one another, giving a more richer conept of the original word.

DICTIONARIES AND WORD STUDIES

Once you have found the word in the Strongs Concordance and have researched it through that "tool" you may want to see it in a more critical and applicable light.

There are many Greek and Hebrew dictionaries and word studies available on the market as well as on line. Most of them are not based on the Strongs Concordance numbering system, but rather display the words alphabetically in their original text. This is why you need to see the actual word in the original text if you start out in a Strongs Concordance.

Specialized Greek and Hebrew dictionaries will more thoroughly define the words using much of the "layering" we previously discussed in the core definition in an expanded text.

Word studies are also reference texts that help you see how the word you are researching might have been typically used in the culture and society of the time that particular passage of scripture was written. These can help us better interpret what the author was really trying to communicate on a cultural or sociological platform. It also helps us "de-American-ize" our viewpoint of the Bible. Many times we read the Bible as if it was a book written in North America during our lifetime. So an English word used in a translation of the Bible might have a slightly different use or definition in our time than was originally intended. The problem lies in the fact that it (the translation word) probably was the best available word to use by the translator at the time, since the English language tends to be narrow in its use and definition. This is why word studies can be very helpful in a thorough Bible study system.

COMMENTARIES & REFERENCES

Commentaries can be very helpful in the interpretation of passages of scripture. When reviewing the comments of another theologian or commentator, it is essential to understand that these are merely reflections and perceptions of scripture by other humans. Commentaries are not considered to be inspired by the Holy Spirit and are definitely not equal to the scriptures contained in the Bible.

They will give you a variety of insights into various passages of scripture which you may have never been exposed to. Many times the variety of viewpoints will bring a more balanced perspective into our method of analysis and interpretation of the Bible.

Popular traditional commentators include ones written by Adam Clarke, Albert Barnes William Barclay, W.A. Criswell, Frank Gaebelein, Matthew Henry, Charles Hodge, Thomas Oden, Matthew Poole and many others. There are many others in the last century who have issued and published their notes and commentaries on a wide variety of Biblical texts. The main thing to remember is that the words of a commentary are just that. They are the words of a man and his perception or interpretation of scripture. We must be diligent to acknowledge where the Holy Scriptures end and the commentators notes begin in our thinking. Many up and coming Bible scholars end up studying the commentaries more than the scriptures, hoping to find answers to their own misconceptions and lack of enthusiasm to search the scriptures for themselves. Acts 17:11 Now the Bereans were of more noble character than the Thessalonians, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true. (NIV) Notice these Christians at Berea used the Scriptures to test the words of Paul. Many times in modern Christianity we go to the commentators to see whether the Bible fits our mold correctly. This pattern of searching the scriptures given to us by the Berean Christians is correct motivation for Bible study even today.

MAPS AND ARCHEOLOGY

Many Biblical students find that the use of maps and archeological references help make the Bible much more understandable and easier to follow. Even though the region of the middle east and/or the Roman Empire stayed the same through the recorded history of the Bible, the provinces, territories and National boundaries changed somewhat across the centuries.

Keeping a group of maps handy during Bible study will help you understand the topography and the distance between related cities and countries. It may also help you understand the use of time in the Bible also. The following is a list of maps that you might find helpful in your research and study of the Bible;

Map of Genesis and early civilization

Map of the exodus and journey through the wilderness

Map of conquering the promised land of Canaan

Map of Israel during the reign of the kings

Map of the known world during the time of the prophets

Map of the Roman Empire during the life of Jesus Christ

Many times Biblical archeological studies will also prove to be interesting and informative to the student of scriptures. Archeological reports tend to be very confirming and assuring of Biblical history and sociology.

There is an increasing amount of information on maps and archeology on the internet. Many maps can be downloaded and usually without cost. There are countless pages of reports on Biblical and mid eastern archeology. The irony of much of the middle eastern archeological reports is that even from secular non religious sources, they all seem to be very confirming of scriptural historical and geographical accounts.

4). Formulate 3-5 key points or words to emphasize about the selected topic in Scripture. Make these emphasis for the entire sermon. They should be simple to understand and easy to remember. 5). You may want to use an example story, an object lesson, a simple drama or a poem to illustrate various aspects of the selected subject and/or scriptures. This helps the hearer remember what the main point or points are.6). Summarize your points and create a challenge and/or application of the topic for the congregational members to use or apply personally to their lives. Sermopns are tools by which God effects change or the potential for change in the listeners life.7). Close with a prayer and an invitation of response from the congregation. This may include a call of the congregation to the front of the church for prayer or a show of hands from those who are requesting prayer or responding to the message from God that they have just heard.

OUTLINE FOR FUNERAL SERVICE

1). Special Musical Selection

2). Welcoming of Family and Guests

3). Reading of Obituary or Eulogy

4). Special Musical Selection

5). Scripture Reading

Examples of commonly used scriptures

Psalms 23:1-6

The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures; he leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul; he leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name's sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for You are with me; your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup runs over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life; and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.

John 11:25-26

Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. "And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?"

John 14:1-6

"Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. "In My Father's house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. "And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also. "And where I go you know, and the way you know." Thomas said to Him, "Lord, we do not know where You are going, and how can we know the way?" Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

2 Timothy 4:6-8

For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing.

Revelation 1:5-8

and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler over the kings of the earth. To Him who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood, and has made us kings and priests to His God and Father, to Him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen. Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him, even they who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. Even so, Amen. "I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End," says the Lord, "who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty."

Additional Choices in Scripture : Isaiah 43:1-3, II Corinthians 1:3-7, Psalms 116:15

6). Pastoral Prayer

7). Message

Use personal references to issue comfort and encouragement to survivors and friends. Refrain from personal opinions and judgements. You may want to use some of the above scriptures that have not been previously read.

8). Closing Prayer

OUTLINE FOR GRAVESIDE COMMITTAL SERVICE

1). Reading of Scripture

Example

Revelation 21:3-5

And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And he said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful.

2). Brief Words of Commission and Encouragement

3). Prayer

4). Committal Rights

Example 1

Ashes to Ashes. Dust to Dust

From the dust of the earth we were formed and to the earth we shall all return. So in that belief we commit the body of our beloved father / mother / brother / sister / son / daughter back to the earth from which he / she was formed. Placing our complete trust in the faithfulness of God to resurrect him / her into a new and eternal spiritual body of life everlasting. (optional) May his / her soul and souls of all the faithful departed through the mercy of God rest in peace. Amen.

Example 2

For as much as it has pleased Almighty God our Heavenly Father to take unto Himself the soul of our beloved brother/sister, we now tenderly commit his/her mortal remains back to the earth from which he/she created. This body may dissolve into the earth, but the spirit of our brother/sister we commend into the hands of God knowing that he is a just and righteous in all His ways.

5). Benediction

Examples of benedictions

To him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy--to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! Amen. (from the book of Jude)

And now may the peace of God the Father, the love of His only Son Jesus Christ and the power of the Holy Spirit be with you and go with until we all meet together again. In the Name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen.

The Lord bless you and keep you. The Lord make His face to shine upon you and be gracious to you. Man the Lord lift up His countenance upon you and give you peace. Amen. (from the book of Numbers)

OUTLINE FOR A WEDDING

1). Special Musical Selections

2). Processional of Bridesmaids and Bride. Groom, groomsmen and minister should already be at the front of the sanctuary.

3). Welcome and Introductory Statements

Dearly beloved we are gathered here today in the sight of God and these witness to join together this man and this woman in holy matrimony. This honorable ordinance is not to be entered into lightly or with out counsel and advice. Both the man and the woman should commit their lives to this act reverently and soberly with a clear conscience before God and before man. If any man can show just cause why these two cannot be lawfully joined together, let him speak now or forever hold his peace.

4). The Giving Away of the Bride

"Who gives this woman to be married to this man?

5). Pastoral Commission to the Bride and Groom

The Old Testament prophet Malachi makes this proclamation of the Lord God Almighty in regards to marriage when he says "Has not the LORD made them one? In flesh and spirit they are his. And why one? Because he was seeking godly offspring. So guard yourself in your spirit, and do not break faith with the wife of your youth. "I hate divorce," says the LORD God of Israel, "and I hate a man's covering himself with violence as well as with his garment," says the LORD Almighty. So guard yourself in your spirit, and do not break faith.

6). Pastoral Commission to the Family and Friends

It is your job as witnesses of this testimony of love displayed here before you this day to encourage, love and support these two on their walk together from this time forward.

7). Repeating of the Vows

I (groom) take thee (bride) to be my wedded 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 do us part, according to Gods holy ordinance, and thereto I pledge you my love.

I (bride) take thee (groom) to be my wedded husband, 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 do us part, according to Gods holy ordinance, and thereto I pledge you my love.

8). Ring Ceremony (Special musical selections may be used to introduce this section)

With this ring, I thee wed , as a token of my love and unending faithfulness I give it to thee as a constant reminder of our lives together as one.

9). Unity Candle Ceremony (optional)

Both the bride and groom now take the individually lit candles before them which represent their separate lives up until this day. As the they jointly light the unity candle in the center with each of their flames and then extinguish their own individual candles they portray by example the unity of there lives together now as one.

In Genesis 2:24 we read "For this cause a man shall leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave to his wife; and they shall become one flesh."

10). Pastoral Prayer of Blessing

Our gracious heavenly Father, we ask your blessing upon this couple as they begin their new life together this day. Strengthen them, guide them and protect them, and lead them and their family in the paths of righteousness according to the salvation provided for them in the death, burial and resurrection of your only Son Jesus Christ, in whose name we now humbly pray, Amen.

Those who God hath joined together let no man put asunder.

11). The Pronouncement and Bridal Kiss

By the power vested in me by the State of __________ and the calling and ordination to ministry by God our heavenly Father through Jesus Christ his only Son, I now pronounce you husband and wife. You may kiss your bride.

12). First Presentation of the Couple

It is now my privilege to introduce to you for the first time Mr. & Mrs. (Name)

13). Recessional

OUTLINE FOR A BAPTISMAL SERVICE

1). Singing of a Song (Chorus or Hymn)

2). Introduction of the candidate(s)

3). Questioning and Response of the Candidate(s)

Example

- Have you personally accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as your savior and repented from your sins?

- Is it your desire from this day forward to serve Him faithfully in all aspects of your life?

4). Proclamation

Optional Proclamation

a). I baptize you in the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit

b). I baptize you in the Name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

5). Immersion of the Candidate(s).

6). Singing of a Song (Chorus or Hymn)

7). Benediction

Example

Go in peace to serve our Lord Jesus Christ faithfully throughout your life!

OUTLINE FOR A COMMUNION SERVICE

1). Reading of Scripture

1 Corinthians 11:23-30

The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, "This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me." In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, "This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me." For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord's death until he comes. Therefore, whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of sinning against the body and blood of the Lord. A man ought to examine himself before he eats of the bread and drinks of the cup. For anyone who eats and drinks without recognizing the body of the Lord eats and drinks judgment on himself. That is why many among you are weak and sick, and a number of you have fallen asleep.

2). Distribute the bread

3). Invitation to partake of the bread (optional prayer)

4). Distribute the cup (wine or juice)

5). Invitation to partake of the cup (optional prayer)

6). Prayer of Thanksgiving and Dedication

7). BenedictionGOOD MINISTERIAL PRACTICES

Dont be bound to traditions and rituals unless they are spiritually beneficial to your congregation. Try various liturgies or additions to the service and see how your congregation reacts or doesnt react. Be sensitive to the needs of your congregation. Every congregation has general spiritual needs. They are prayer, including special or personalized prayer for specific needs and circumstances in the parishioners life. Also there is a need for fellowship and for Bible instruction and discipleship.

Learn to recognize and appoint the real leaders (not necessarily the popular ones) of the church. These would be the elders and deacons and deaconesses.

In 1 Timothy 3:1-7, the Apostle Paul writes to Timothy and gives him the qualities of an elder and a deacon. Here is a trustworthy saying: If anyone sets his heart on being an overseer, he desires a noble task. Now the overseer must be above reproach, the husband of but one wife, temperate, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not given to drunkenness, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. He must manage his own family well and see that his children obey him with proper respect. (If anyone does not know how to manage his own family, how can he take care of God's church?) He must not be a recent convert, or he may become conceited and fall under the same judgment as the devil. He must also have a good reputation with outsiders, so that he will not fall into disgrace and into the devil's trap. Bishops, Elders, Overseers and Pastors are all Biblically synonymous ministry names.

Overseers must have three important spiritual traits
1). good manager of his home and family
2). spiritual maturity
3). good reputation outside of the church real good character (vs.7)

This is defined as follows:
1). above reproach (cannot be continually being accused)
2). cannot practice polygamy (not more than one spouse)
3). practices self control (not explosive in situations)
4). respected by other Christians
5). hospitable towards those in the community
6). be able to teach the Bible (communication skills)
7). not an alcoholic (no abuse of alcohol or mind altering substances)
8). non violent
9). gentle (dependably kind)
10). does not engage in unnecessary arguments
11). does not have a love of money.

Other ministry leaders may be needed for special ministry groups such as a singles group or a teen fellowship, or maybe a senior adult group. Volunteers and workers will need to be recruited from time to time to help in supportive roles and general assistance.

Learn to know when enough is enough. Know the boundaries by which you will live your life in ministry. Share those boundaries with someone you trust so that they may hold you accountable to such limitations. Then commit yourself to live in that realm of accountability. Set obtainable goals and be willing to delegate responsibilities for the things that you can not or are not able to participate in.

Live an active prayer life for the congregation you serve and for yourself. The more you communicate with God the more you will draw into Him and know His will for your life and your congregations. "Prayer care" is the most important part of your life. Listen for Gods voice as you study His word the Bible. Study the Bible and pray ! Let your life be a reflection of the glory of Jesus Christ!