the Collaring/Wedding Ceremony
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Our Wedding & Collaring Ceremony
THE ENTRANCE OF THE SUBMISSIVE
Sir George enters and escorts the submissive to Sir Stephen's side. kitten follows behind with the rings. catherine kneels at Sir Stephen's feet.
REV. LESLIE: Stephen and catherine come before you tonight…you their friends and loved ones who have nurtured and supported them. And, they ask you, at this the moment of their joining, to bless their newborn union with the gifts you have given so freely to them as individuals - your love and caring attention. As you all know catherine has worn a symbol of her submission to Stephen as her Master for a long time now. She has, of her own free will taken to herself the title of slave. This word may cause consternation to any who are not members of the D/s community. Stephen and catherine wish to reassure those here tonight that they, and all those in the D/s community, are acutely aware of the historical horrors attached to the word slave and slavery. That for them the term is used to describe a vocation, the vocation of slavehood, freely chosen by a consenting adult and received with honor, respect and gratitude as the greatest gift one can offer to another. Catherine's freely given gift of submission, and Stephen's grateful acceptance of it has been the fount and the underlying strength in their relationship. It has allowed them to grow…catherine in her service and obedience to her Master…and Stephen in his caring, protection and nurturing of his slave. This symbol, her collar, was given to catherine by Stephen in private, but has been displayed publicly ever since. He now offers the collar again to catherine…before all assembled here…and asks her again for her gift and her vow to serve only him in all things as his slave.
THE COLLARING CEREMONY
Stephen removes catherine's collar. He hands the collar to Master Sam who passes it quickly through the flames of a small burner and returns it to Sir Stephen, who places it again on catherine's neck. As he fastens it securely, he makes a declaration to her that he will protect and guide her for all of eternity:
WHILE THE ABOVE ACTIONS
IT IS EXPLAINED BY REV LESLIE:
In older times, the collar would have been heated to a glow and plunged into cold water to temper it after it was burned of all impurities. This action symbolized the removing of all impurities from the circle of ownership provided by the Dominant. All outside influences are burned away in the heat of his desire to protect and defend his submissive. The tempering of the metal that takes place when plunged into cold water shows the strengthening of their commitment by submersion into the waters of life. Today we only symbolize this by passing the collar quickly though the flame, taking care not to damage it.
CATHERINE: "I offer to you all that i am and ever will be for you to hold and protect. Ever will i serve you in all things and in all ways."
STEPHEN: "Do you accept this collar as proof of your vow to me…and the symbol of my love, guidance and protection of you?"
CATHERINE: "I accept your collar." The collar is replaced on catherine's neck.
The submissive Sam's flame removes a length of light-weight chain from it's box and pass it quickly though the flame. With Master Sam's help she wraps it around the couple's hands.
WHILE THE ABOVE ACTIONS
IT IS EXPLAINED BY REV. LESLIE:
The chain is a series of links that represent all the events that have led them to be joined. Each one interlocks with another to complete the chain. Passing it through the flame symbolizes the purification of all the events in their time together as well as their pasts. All bad things are burned away into forgetfulness and only the good remains. Wrapping the chain around them gives a visual image of the binding together of two souls into one. This chain is never used for anything again; other than in a similar ceremony by the person who receives this chain as a gift. (after the chain is placed on their hands):
STEPHEN AND CATHERINE: "As we are bound now by this chain so shall our lives, hearts and very souls be bound for all eternity." The chain is removed and returned to it's box to be given to the couple when the ceremony has ended.
REV. LESLIE: Now you will feel no rain, for each of you will be shelter for the other. Now you will feel no cold, for each of you will be warmth for the other. Now there will be no more loneliness, for each of you will be companion to the other. Now you are two bodies, but there is only one life before you. May you live in love and joy together, now and always...AMEN
INTRODUCTION TO THE VOWS
REV. LESLIE: But, despite the beauty of catherine's submission, and strength of Stephen's Dominance they came to believe that there was a still greater depth to be explored by them. There grew between them a desire to form a bond that would express the unique form of their loving relationship in a sanctified union that would speak to all the world…D/s or not…they desired to be married. Marriage means many things…different things in different times and different cultures…but one thing is always true…it always means that two individuals wish to proclaim to their community that they desire to have their relationship acknowledged and accepted as having attained the highest level of commitment possible. They join together, in the sight of the community which supports them, and become something greater…something more powerful…more potent, than they could ever hope to become on their own. Marriage has meant…more often than not…the giving of the wife to the Husband…and has carried the expectation with it that the Husband would lead while the wife would follow. This is perhaps no longer politically correct in the 21st century USA…but a time honored tradition none the less…and still widely held be true in many lands. Stephen and catherine believe that this is the tradition that will bring them the most joy…and this is the union into which they intend to enter. St. Peter, in his First Letter writes of marriage…the duties of the wife to her husband, the husband to his wife…and the responsibilities of both to their community: "You married women, be submissive to your husbands, so that even if any do not obey the Word of God the may be won over by the godly lives of their wives. When they observe the pure and modest way in which you conduct yourselves together with your reverence for your husband; you are to feel for him all that reverence includes: respect, deference, honor, esteem, appreciation, prizing him, and in the human sense, adore him. That is, to admire, praise, be devoted to, and enjoy your husband. In the same way you married men should live considerately with your wives, with an intelligent recognition of the marriage relation, honoring the woman as the weaker, but realizing that you are joint heirs to the grace of God. Finally, all of you should be of one and the same mind…united in spirit…sympathizing with one another…loving each other as brethren…compassionate and courteous. It is with this understanding of the duties and responsibilities that each of them wish to undertake for the sake of the other that Stephen and catherine stand here before you today.
THE WEDDING VOWS:
LESLIE: Now, standing here in the presence of the
Almighty and in the presence of this assembly, repeat these words after me with
all the love that fills your hearts: Yes, I Stephen,…choose you, catherine,
to be my wife…my friend, my love…I will be yours in plenty and in want…in sickness
and in health…in failure and in triumph…I will cherish you and respect you…comfort
you and encourage you…and together we shall live…finding our greatest freedom
in the bonds of our love. Yes, I catherine,…choose you, Stephen, to be my Husband…my
friend, my love…I will be yours in plenty and in want…in sickness and in health…in
failure and in triumph…I will cherish you, respect you and obey you…comfort
you and encourage you…and together we shall live…finding our greatest freedom
in the bonds of our love. And, so it is.
I CORINTHIANS 13:7,13
LESLIE: Love bears all, Believes all, And endures
all. Love never fails, And though there are many different kinds of love, the
greatest of all is unconditional love. What the sages are telling us here is
to love one another without reservation or prerequisite… to be understanding
of each others' faults and to rise above the particular situation to exercise
your option to put aside the minor annoyances of the day and focus instead on
your deep and abiding love for one another. Through your many years together,
whenever you become angry or frustrated, I hope that you will remember these
words: "The greatest of all is unconditional love." AMEN
kitten brings to rings to Rev. Leslie.
REV. LESLIE: Stephen, take this ring as a token of your love for catherine. Place it on your bride's finger and repeat after me:
With this ring…I give you my promise….that from this day forward…you shall never walk alone… My heart will be your shelter…my arms will be your home…we will walk together through life…as lovers and as friends… I promise that I shall always do my best…to love and guide you. With this ring…I give you your freedom…and my trust in you. I give you my heart until the end of time…I have no greater gift to give… Do you so promise?
STEPHEN: "I do."
REV. LESLIE: catherine, take this ring as a token of your love for Stephen. Place it on his finger and repeat after me: With this ring…I give you my promise…that from this day forward…you shall never walk alone… My heart will be your shelter…my arms will be your home…we will walk together through life…as lovers and as friends… I promise that I shall always do my best…to love and obey you. With this ring…I give you dominion over me…and my trust in you. I give you my heart until the end of time…I have no greater gift to give… Do you so promise?
CATHERINE: "I do."
REV. LESLIE: Please hold hands. For Stephen and catherine the ring ceremony is of special importance. The rings, like the collar, are symbols…but doubly potent…for while the rings are smaller than the collar they encompass a wider and deeper meaning…one that subsumes the collar and all that it signifies within it. For this reason their rings are emblazoned with circles of rope knotted together at the front…the symbols of bondage and their chosen lifestyle. But the knotted ropes also speak of the bonds of marriage they accept today before God and all assembled here.
ADVICE TO THE COUPLE
REV. LESLIE: When you are married, you join hands and become one. As you walk through life together, remember that you are both unique and different from each other. Give your love openly and honestly. Value your differences as they helped to bring you together. Always respect and accept what the other has to say, even if you do not agree. Remember that you are two separate individuals. You are one; you are partners; you are living the same life; yet, your lives may be different. You have yourself and you have each other. Take time to enjoy every day that you share together and remember that each day is a new beginning. You will be sharing todays and tomorrows together and making each one more treasured and more complete than anyone could make alone. A marriage is a home interwoven with hopes, memories and dreams. The thankfulness and love it can bring have no comparison. In marriage, walk the path together, side by side whenever possible. Remember to hold each other when it is cold. If the air becomes too close, make a little space so each can breathe. When the path is narrow, pick one to lead. Trust you partner, trust yourself. For marriage is a journey that leads to great love. It is in this spirit that I welcome and greet you - and by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Laws of God and the State of New York, I now pronounce you Stephen and catherine, to be husband and wife before God and all humanity. (To the couple) Please kiss each other.
REV. LESLIE: And now, we invite you all to join us in this blessing. You don't have to be a member of the clergy to bless others. All of us are called upon many times in our lives to bless one another. And what day could be more auspicious than this holy day to bless this bride and this groom? So please join me now by repeating "Amen" after each blessing. May your hearts be united in the never-ending bond of pure love, Amen. May you share many happy years together and enjoy the rewards of a good life, Amen. May your friends and family bring you happiness, and may your generous love for them be returned to you, many times over, Amen. May you experience all that life has to offer, Amen. And, may joy and peace live always in your hearts and in your home, Amen. I have the pleasure to present to you, for the very first time…Mr. and Mrs. Stephen Siegel.