Let’s get down to wedding business, shall we? I truly appreciate all the kind comments and tweets and am excited to catch you up on our wedding and honeymoon over several
hundred posts. And yes, I promise to tell you all about those killer bridesmaids dresses. While I was extremely excited for our reception (and the aforementioned dresses), the highlight was definitely the moment we exchanged vows and our marriage became “official.”
For Catholics, many – if not most – of life’s greatest milestones are marked by the seven holy sacraments. Since I will never receive the sacrament of holy orders (obvi), that leaves six:
- Holy Matrimony
- Anointing of the Sick
Holy Matrimony (or the sacrament of marriage, if you’re feeling casual) is a public sign of giving oneself totally to your partner, while also making a commitment to our faith. Because Nick and I have such a warm, welcoming faith community, our decision to get married at our parish, St. Cecilia, was an easy one.In the months leading up to our wedding, we met with our pastor and our pastoral associate (he was also our cantor and coordinated our Mass). We requested our baptismal certificates from the churches where we were baptized – mine from Hyde Park and Nick’s from Lowell. [Catholic fun (?) fact: The parish where you were baptized - most likely as an infant - keeps all of your official records regardless of if/when you join a new parish. Most records are still kept by hand.] We completed a day-long marriage preparation class (often referred to as pre-Cana) at The Paulist Center in Boston, which focused on conversations about faith, finances, and relationships. I had no idea what to expect going into the process, but truthfully, we had an overwhelmingly positive experience. We are really lucky to have found a home in our parish and the people that make up that community.
For the Mass itself, we were encouraged to choose the readings and music that best spoke to us and our relationship. Not surprisingly, we chose readings and songs about love (truly creative, I know) and joy and peace. In addition to our bridesmaids and groomsmen, we had a chance to involve family members in a special way at our Mass. We chose two readings from the New Testament that I adore. Ordinarily a Catholic Mass includes one Old Testament reading and one New Testament reading, but most of our OT (…if I may) options were a little too “wife, obey your husband” for us. I do what I want.
- First reading: Philippians 4:4-9, read by my sister-in-law Colleen
- Second reading: Colossians 3:12-17, read by my uncle Bob
After the Gospel reading (John 15:9-12), Fr. John gave such a touching homily. I am so grateful for the way he welcomed our family and friends, and shared bits and pieces of our conversation with him in the days leading up to the wedding. He talked about the things we love most about one another and reminded us how important it is to continue to “bring these words to speech.”
I managed to keep my composure (mostly), but teared up a number of times throughout Mass. The music and readings were just perfect. Being walked toward the altar by my father, and seeing so many loved ones on each side of the aisle, was incredible… especially knowing that Nick was waiting for me just a few yards away. To have so many people gathered around us as we exchanged vows was such a gift. At the risk of sounding like a cheese doodle, I was overwhelmed by the outpouring of love we felt that day.
Overwhelmed… and ready to dance.
Also On Tap for Today:
- Back to reality… and 9,001 work emails
- Amanda‘s Holiday Bootie Buster Challenge starts today
- Learn more about our parish
What is your signature dance move?