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A Ceremony of Divorce
May 9, 2011 8:05am
I was given this cermony for divorce by one of my clients.  I love the honor it gives to the marriage, and thought it worth quoting here.

 

ILLUMINATA: A Return to Prayer by Mirianne Williamson

Ceremony of Divorce 

            The purpose of this ceremony is to heal hearts, by forgiving the past and releasing the future. This rite is to be held in the presence of the coupleís children, and one person chosen by the couple to be the officiant of the ceremony.

            Like all the ceremonies presented here, this one should not be taken lightly or done casually. I recommend that a spiritual counselor or therapist be the officiant, after having worked with the couple privately to ensure that both participants are ready to declare publicly their forgiveness and release.

OFFICIANT    We come together today not in joy but acceptance.

            For yourselves and for your children, we ask Godís help in this important transition. May you release each other in love and forgiveness, that you may go on from this point healed and whole, no longer married but family still.

            We join with you in Godís presence, as you hereby let go the bond of marriage between you. We ask Godís blessing on you, as you both seek and grant forgiveness. We join with you in the recognition that through the grace of God there are no endings but only the chance for new beginnings, and we pray this day for God to give that new beginning, to you and to your children.

            I say to the children of this couple, whose souls are tried by the experience of this divorce, or have perhaps been tried still more by the condition of your parentsí marriage: May the angels minister unto your hearts and free you from

 

 

your pain. May you forgive your parents. In your hearts, may you accept and bless this decision.

(The officiant now asks the children, one by one, if there is any statement of feeling or intention that they would like to make. The children do so.)

 

                        And so it is. Let us pray. 

Dear God,

We ask You to take these two dearly beloved souls into Your hands.

Include in Your mercy and compassion their children.

May the golden cord that has bound these two in marriage be not violently                 severed, but carefully and peacefully laid aside, this act forgiven and granted meaning by God Himself.

May these two remain parents and sacred friends forever.

Never shall the bond of marriage be made meaningless, before God or humankind.

May these two beloved children of God remember that the love of their union was important, and honor it always.

Your experiences together were the lessons of live lived searching for love.

God understands.

He asks you to remember the innocence in each other, now and forever.

May forgiveness wash you clean. 

 

The love you gave and the love you received were real and will be with you always.

The rest, let us silently and willingly give to God, that He might heal your hearts and give rest to your souls.

You have suffered enough, in coming to this point.

With this prayer, may your family begin again, having released the past and sought from God Himself a new path forward.

We place both past and future in the hands of God.

You are still a family, blessed and held together by God.

May you remain so forever.

And so it is.

Amen.

 

            (At this point, the couple may choose a ceremonial return of each otherís wedding rings                or some other symbolic gesture of loving release. In marriage ceremonies, a couple often    chooses to light a single candle from two separate ones. In the divorce ceremony, a                couple may choose to light two separate candles from one. This symbolizes that                                  although they shall now lead two separate lives, the fire at the centers of their beings                  were blended by God and shall remain so forever.)

 

 DIVORCING HUSBAND  (To Wife)  (Name), I bless you and release you. Please forgive me; I forgive you. Go in peace. You will remain in my heart.

 

DIVORCING WIFE  (To Husband)  (Name), I bless you and release you. Please forgive me; I forgive you. Go in peace. You will remain in my heart.

 

OFFICIANT    Please repeat after me:

Dear God,

Please help us now.

Bless this decision.

Bless our children.

Thank You for what has been.

Thank You for what shall be.

Amen.

 

            I now ask all those gathered here for two minutes of silent prayer for the healing and restoration of these wounded hearts.

            (They do so.)

 

And so it is. (Name) and (Name), you are released from your commitment of marriage. You remain committed forever to the bonds of goodwill.

            God bless you
Posted by Barbara Bartlett
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