Pastor Moore: “This is a very happy and sacred occasion which brings us to the house of the Lord with the purpose of uniting into holy bonds of wedlock, man and wife. Jessica and Kenny, you’re honoring us today as we have come to celebrate such a wonderful occasion. A love that really permeates our lives. As the apostle Paul once said:
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.Love never fails.
My brother’s wife, Amanda, read “The Promise” by Eileen Rafter, a poem I heard at a friend’s wedding and loved.
The sun danced on the snow with a sparkling smile,
As two lovers sat quietly, alone for a while.
Then he turned and said, with a casual air
(Though he blushed from his chin to the tips of his hair),
“I think I might like to get married to you”
“Well then, she said, “Well there’s a thought,
But what if we can’t promise to be all that we ought,
If I’m late yet again, when we plan to go out.
For I know I can’t promise, I’ll learn to ignore
Dirty socks and damp towels strewn all over the floor.
So if we can’t vow to be all that we should
I’m not sure what to do, though the idea’s quite good”.
But he gently smiled and tilted his head
Till his lips met her ear and softly he said
“I promise, to weave my dreams into your own,
That wherever you breathe will be my hearts home.
I promise, that whether with rags or with gold I am blessed
Your smile is the jewel I will treasure the best.
Do you think then, my love, we should marry – do you?”
“Yes” she said smiling “I do.”
Next, we asked Kenny’s sister, Suzy, to read “The Natural History of Love” by Diane Ackerman:
Love. What a small word we use for an idea so immense and powerful. It has altered the flow of history, calmed monsters, kindled works of art, cheered the forlorn, turned tough guys to mush, consoled the enslaved, driven strong women mad, glorified the humble, fueled national scandals, bankrupted robber barons, and made mincemeat of kings. How can love’s spaciousness be conveyed in the narrow confines of one syllable? Love is an ancient delirium, a desire older than civilization, with taproots spreading into deep and mysterious days. The heart is a living museum. In each of its galleries, no matter how narrow or dimly lit, preserved forever like wondrous diatoms, are our moments of loving, and being loved.
Pastor Moore: “Because of your desire, I’m going to ask you to join hands and repeat these vows one to another after me.”
Kenny: “I Kenny, take thee, Jessica, to be my wedded wife. To love and cherish, honor and respect, in sickness or in health, in poverty or in wealth, until death alone shall part us.”
Me: “I Jessica, take thee, Kenny, to be my wedded husband. To love and cherish, honor and respect, in sickness or in health, in poverty or in wealth, until death alone shall part us.”