The church ceremony – part 3

 

After we had said our vows, there were some readings by some of our close friends and family.

Christoph (Tobi’s cousin and Trauzeuge/Best Man) came first and read from the book of Genesis:

Hört Worte über die Liebe
Im ersten Buch Mose steht geschrieben… 

Und Gott sprach: Lasset uns Menschen machen,
ein Bild, das uns gleich sei.
Und Gott schuf den Menschen zu seinem Bilde,
zum Bilde Gottes schuf er ihn;
und schuf sie als Mann und Frau.
Und Gott segnete sie.
Und Gott sah an alles, was er gemacht hatte,
und siehe, es war sehr gut.
Da ward aus Abend und Morgen der sechste Tag.
So wurden vollendet Himmel und Erde.

Then Achim came up and read from the book of Song of Songs:

Im „Hohelied der Liebe“ steht geschrieben:
Lege mich wie ein Siegel auf dein Herz,
wie ein Siegel auf deinen Arm.
Denn Liebe ist stark wie der Tod
und Leidenschaft unwiderstehlich wie das Totenreich.
Ihre Glut ist feurig und ein Feuer Gottes,
so dass auch viele Wasser die Liebe nicht auslöschen
und Ströme sie nicht ertränken können.

Laura (my best friend from college / honorary Maid of Honor) read The Apache Prayer:

Now you will feel no rain,
For each of you will be shelter to the other.
Now you will feel no cold,
For each of you will be warmth to the other.
Now there is no more loneliness,
For each of you will be companion to the other.
Now you are two bodies,
But there is only one life before you.
Go now to your dwelling place
To enter into the days of your togetherness
And may your days be good and long upon the earth.

And then Ariane (my Trauzeugin/witness) read a poem by Martin Gray called Aimer, c’est partager

Aimer, c’est partager des mots, des regards,
des espoirs, des craintes.
L’Amour n’est jamais contrainte.
Il est joie, liberté, force.
L’Amour est emportement et enthousiasme.
L’Amour est risque.
N’aiment et ne sont pas aimés ceux qui veulent épargner, économiser leurs sentiments.
L’Amour est générosité, l’amour est prodigalité,
l’amour est échange.
Savoir accepter l’autre tel qu’il est.
Être joyeux du bonheur qu’il trouve.
L’aimer dans sa totalité : pour ce qu’il est, laideur et beauté, défauts et qualités.

Then it was time for the union and the blessing. Matthias and Frank asked us in German and English the typical “Do you take Tobias/Sarah to be your husband/wife…?” question and we answered YES. (Seeing as we were already legally married…obviously that’s the only right answer! Ha!)

And then our brothers came up and stood next to us and handed us the rings.

Tobias: Take this ring as a symbol of my love.

Me: Nimm diesen Ring als Zeichen meiner Liebe.

(I had to push really hard again to get the ring onto his finger!)

Frank then took our hands and blessed us, and then we were married!

Tobias, you may kiss your bride!

All of the guests applauded. What a great feeling!

But that’s not all! Then we went to the altar and knelt down and Matthias & Frank gave us the blessing.

After the blessing, I was so happy to be married that I forgot the ceremony wasn’t over yet! (Is it just me, or do wedding ceremonies in the States pretty much end after they kiss the bride?) So we went back to our seats and then Tobi’s good friend (and professional tenor) Georg came up and sang the Trauungskavatine by Louis Roessel.

Then it was time for the Lord’s Prayer, which we did simultaneously in English and in German, and then for a prayer, which my cousin Liz and Tobi’s good friend and old theology professor Theo helped with. Then there were a few announcements, and one last song: Vertraut den neuen Wegen. Frank did the benediction at the end in French — which was a nice surprise because Frank learned French this year with Ariane’s sister, Diane. Way to go, Frank!

And that was the end of the ceremony!

(All photos from our lovely photographer, Annette Schrader!)

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