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Pinot Butter & Jellies: The Ceremony, Part 1

March 9, 2011

Hi there…remember me?  It’s been over a month since my last wedding recap post [], and I’m sorry to have left you all hanging.  (You were waiting with bated breath, right? Right?!)  Part of it is that I’ve been insanely busy, but the other part is that I’m having a bit of writer’s block.  Writing about your wedding ceremony is hard to do, because, well, how do you put all that emotion into words?  How do you describe such a life-changing moment?  So after starting and re-starting this post many different ways, I’m simply going to share our ceremony with you, as it was officiated by Revered Lili Goodman Freitas.

Lili started the ceremony by thanking our guests for coming from near and far to participate in our special day, and taking a few moments to honor those who could not be there with us.

“We come together not to mark the start of a relationship, but to recognize a bond that already exists. This marriage is one expression of the many varieties of love.

It is our responsibility as a community of Love to support Garrett and Monica as they set forth in this their vow of unity. While Love is a quality of heart and an attitude of the emotions, marriage is a life’s work.  Therefore, this is an occasion of both joy and responsibility that we who partake in it stand forward as witnesses to the labor of love that Monica and Garrett are undertaking.   We celebrate their love, and bless their decision to journey forward in their lives as partners in marriage.”

After a moment of reflection, Lili invited our friend C to present the first reading, “i carry your heart with me” by e.e. cummings.

i carry your heart with me (i carry it in
my heart) i am never without it (anywhere
i go you go, my dear; and whatever is done
by only me is your doing, my darling)
i fear
no fate (for you are my fate, my sweet) i want
no world (for beautiful you are my world, my true)
and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant
and whatever a sun will always sing is you
here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life; which grows
higher than the soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart

i carry your heart (i carry it in my heart)

After the first reading, Lili took a moment to honor our parents:  “Just as we give thanks that you brought them into this life and taught them to love, we ask that you be blessed by their joining today. The ideals, the understanding, and the mutual respect, which these two bring to their marriage have roots in the love, friendship, and guidance, with which you, their family have provided them.  They thank you for your continued confidence in them and your encouragement and support.”

Lili then turned to each set of parents and asked for their blessings, which they joyfully gave.

Next, my longtime friend R came forward to present the second reading, “The Art of Marriage” by Wilferd Arlan Peterson.

A good marriage must be created.
In the art of marriage the little things are the big things It is never being too old to hold hands.
It is remembering to say “I love you” at least once each day. It is never going to sleep angry.
It is having a mutual sense of values and common objectives.
It is forming a circle of love that gathers in the whole family. It is speaking words of appreciation and
demonstrating gratitude in thoughtful ways.
It is having the capacity to forgive and forget. It is giving each other an atmosphere in which each can grow.
It is finding room for the things of the spirit.
It is a common search for the good and the beautiful. It is not only marrying the right partner…
It is being the right partner.

After the second reading, Lili gave the marriage address, which included some personal remarks about us and our relationship.  Then, she asked for the affirmation of the community:

“As family and friends, you form a community of support that surrounds Monica and Garrett. Each of you, by your presence here today is being called upon to uphold them in honoring their love for one other Always stand beside them, never between them. Offer them your love and your support, not your judgment. Encourage them when encouragement is needed And listen to them when they ask for advice. In these ways, you can honor this marriage into which they have come to be joined today. Do you offer your love and support to strengthen their marriage and bless this family created by their union? Please answer by saying : WE DO.”

The affirmation was followed by our third and final reading, “Union” by Robert Flughum.  Out of our three readings, this was the one that resonated with me the most.  Our good friend D performed the reading, and he did an amazing job:

You have known each other from the first glance of acquaintance to this point of commitment. At some point, you decided to marry. From that moment of yes, to this moment of yes, indeed, you have been making commitments in an informal way. All of those conversations that were held in a car, or over a meal, or during long walks – all those conversations that began with, “When we’re married”, and continued with “I will” and “you will” and “we will” – all those late night talks that included “someday” and “somehow” and “maybe” – and all those promises that are unspoken matters of the heart. All these common things, and more, are the real process of a wedding.

The symbolic vows that you are about to make are a way of saying to one another, “You know all those things that we’ve promised, and hoped, and dreamed – well, I meant it all, every word.”

Look at one another and remember this moment in time. Before this moment you have been many things to one another – acquaintance, friend, companion, lover, dancing partner, even teacher, for you have learned much from one another these past few years. Shortly you shall say a few words that will take you across a threshold of life, and things between you will never quite be the same.

For after today you shall say to the world –
This is my husband. This is my wife.

*All photos in this post are courtesy of Cliff Brunk Photography.


Missed a post? Catch up here:
  • It’s Pinot Butter Jellies Time!: Week Before the Wedding []
  • Pinot Butter & Jellies: Practice Makes Perfect []
  • Pinot Butter & Jellies: Making a Splash []
  • Pinot Butter & Jellies: Bocce e Abbracci []
  • Pinot Butter & Jellies: The Night Before []
  • Pinot Butter & Jellies: Getting Dolled Up []
  • Pinot Butter & Jellies: Putting on the Dress []
  • Pinot Butter & Jellies: Our First Look []
  • Pinot Butter & Jellies: Bridal Party Portraits []
  • Pinot Butter & Jellies: Setting the Scene, Part 1 []
  • Pinot Butter & Jellies: The Ceremony Begins []
  • Pinot Butter & Jellies: Here Comes the Bride []
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