All photos by the wonderful Robert Gigliotti!
All will be well…eventually.
No doubt about it, the most stressful moment of the whole day was this: after the first look, we had planned on handing the dog over to my dad to drop at the boarder’s, and then he would come back to the Drake, pick us up, and drive us to the church.
However, due to a series of complications—a 25-minute wait for the valet, horrible traffic, Mae’s check-in taking forever—my dad not only couldn’t get back to the hotel to get us, but was LATE TO THE WEDDING. The rest of us arrived well before the start time of 3:00 PM, but at 3:07 my dad was just running in. As our mothers were being seated by the best man, he was frantically tying his tie and putting on his jacket. Of course, by the time we started down the aisle, we were calm and smiley and no one was the wiser. But man, I think we BOTH aged 10 years in that moment!
Anyway, at this point we were ready to go—veil on, face touched up, frantic father fully dressed. We could hear the choir from where we were waiting, and when the music changed to Jeremiah Clarke’s “Trumpet Voluntary” (<– worth a listen—so beautiful), my sister processed down the aisle, and then it was time for me and my dad.
Walking down the aisle was one of the parts I was dreading most, but it was absolutely fine. And short.
I know everyone thinks this about their own wedding, but our mass* was really beautiful. As we are both religion teachers and devout Catholics, we embraced every opportunity to choose the readings, music, and prayers ourselves. And there is actually quite a bit of personalization to a Catholic ceremony!
Yes, we knelt the whole time. #piety
We selected readings from the book of Tobit and the Letter to the Hebrews (proclaimed by Ben’s sister and his good friend), and our gospel was the story of the wedding at Cana. The psalm featured our violin player and was so beautiful it made me tear up. Our priest, whom I dearly love and have gotten to know quite well over the years, gave a very personal and moving homily.
Send down your mercy on me and on her, and grant that we may grow old together. -Tobit 8:7
Our vows and exchange of rings were smooth (and AUDIBLE—Ben and I were adamant that we wanted our guests to be able to hear us). We loved saying the traditional vows. I know many people prefer to write their own, but there’s something to be said about repeating the same promises millions of faithful couples have made before you. Pretty cool.
“I will awkwardly hold this ring halfway on your finger until I am done reciting.”
Ben and I wrote our own Prayers of the Faithful (you know, the “Lord, hear our prayer” bit) and included an intention for our students (which the few former students who “crashed” our ceremony really enjoyed, naturally). With that, the Liturgy of the Word concluded, and it was then time for the Liturgy of the Eucharist.
The intensity of my Sign of Peace is worth noting.
My dearest friends from college brought up the bread and wine, and my good friend and colleague served as our Eucharistic minister. I love that communion was the first “meal” Ben and I shared as husband and wife.
Before we concluded, we opted to observe a Marian devotion. The choir sang a lovely version of the “Ave Maria” while I left a little bouquet at the statue of Mary.
And then it was time for the kiss! Note Father R looking down on us benevolently.
We processed out, officially married. Guys, this is the moment. So awesome.
Our guests headed immediately to cocktails, while we circled round to the altar for some formal photos…to be continued next time on Sixpence recaps!
*Pro-tip: Be sure someone holds a program for you. Our church put them together for a nominal fee (great), but since we as bride and groom didn’t use them during the ceremony, we never got a chance to grab one to save. Tear.