Each time I “pronounce” a couple, I am a bit in awe of what they have just agreed to do and to be for one another. But every once in a while I am surprised by the emotions that show up in me in that moment, as they did recently at the wedding ceremony of Sara and Marlon.
I suppose it has everything to do with the fact that Sara grew up across the street from me and my husband during the sixteen years we lived in the Forest Park Southeast neighborhood. Our families attended the same church for many years, she participated in the church youth group when I was an adult facilitator, and we carpooled together for a year or so to the high school she attended as a student while I worked there as a teacher.
And although she was absolutely stunning when she walked down the aisle toward Marlon as Etta James sang “At Last,” the tears didn’t catch up with me until that moment at the end:
“Sara and Marlon, by the love that has brought you here today, by the vows you have exchanged, and by the integrity of your commitment, in the presence of these witnesses here and in the presence of God, it is my pleasure and my honor to pronounce you husband and wife.”
Photo by Arsenia Tate