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There’s a paragraph I (and every other Commonwealth Registered Marriage Celebrant in Australia) am required to say during your wedding ceremony, and not saying it or changing it in any way could get me in big trouble. It’s called the Monitum:

I am duly authorised by law to solemnise marriages according to law. Before you are married in my presence and in the presence of these witnesses, I am to remind you of the solemn and binding nature of the relationship into which you are now about to enter. Marriage, according to the law in Australia, is the union of a man and a woman to the exclusion of all others, voluntarily entered into for life (emphasis added).

See the cringeworthy bit? Well I hope you can, given I bolded it. That’s right, I must say that marriage is the union of a man and a woman, and believe me, I cringe every time I hear it and every time I have to say it.

Now while the law says I have to say this and I can’t alter it, there is nothing that says I can’t add a statement before or after that reflects the true feelings of a couple about marriage equality. While this is completely optional, if it’s meaningful to you or your guests you may like to consider adding such a statement.

A common and simple statement is:

Groom and Bride look forward to the day when all couples in Australia, regardless of gender, share the right to marriage.

I have many more samples of marriage equality statements, you can have a look at the suggested statements on the Australian Marriage Equality website, or we can work together to draft something that reflects your views. And of course, if you don’t want to include this, you don’t have to! As always, it’s completely up to you.