This is James Mitchell, who works as a marriage officiant at the Manhattan Marriage Bureau, where he has performed over 27,000 ceremonies in three years.
This is more of a talking activity rather than a listening activity for Intermediate 2 students.
Watch the video and answer the questions below.
How many different couples do you remember?
Who are they with?
What are they wearing?
Where are the ceremonies held?
To what extent do you feel the video shows a picture of the early 21st century?
What do the words below tell us about today’s world?
climate change – globalisation – Google – credit crunch – Web 2.0 – carbon footprint – youth culture
What other trends, ideas, changes or factors define our times?
The video is part of The New York Times video series Vows, where couples explain the way they met and how their relationship developed.
We have posted two more Vows videos, Marguerite and Sean's love story and How we met, Erica and Matthew, both of which include listening activities for intermediate students.
You can also watch the post Wedding Season, and compare the more traditional wedding ceremonies with the Manhattan Marriage Bureau video we have posted today.
We have all types of people who come into the Marriage Bureau. They are from all aspects of life. They are from all over the world.
How are you doing today?
We are gathered here tonight to witness the exchanging of marriage vows between Claudio and Geneva…
I might be doing my 100th ceremony but for the couple in front of me is their first ceremony and so what I want to do is I want to make it as special as I possibly can. So when I close the chapel doors the people that are in front of me are the most important people that are at the office at that time.
Do you Roy solemnly declare to take Nicole to be your lawfully wedded wife?
Do you promise to love, honour, cherish and keep him for as long as you both shall live. As a symbol of your promise, please place a ring on the young lady’s finger.
In as much as you both have consented to be united in the vows of marriage and have exchanged your wedding vows in front of us here tonight and by the power invested to me by the laws of the great state of New York I now pronounce you married. And you may seal your vows…
This should be one of the happiest days of a person’s life and I may be able to be a part of that and just feeling of that energy, the energy in the room, the love in the room, is enough to help me get through each one of the ceremonies.