It was hot and humid in the late morning sun on the beachside lawns. Mike and his guests were relaxing in the shade of the casuarinas to one side of the resort garden. Gemma’s mum came through from the reception area to let me know that Gemma had to make a stop to feed her baby, Oliver. I went to meet Gemma and found them sitting quietly in the foyer. Ollie had been clingy all morning so Gemma felt relieved that, with a breastfeed, he would most likely sleep through the ceremony. Sure enough he settled, and grandma took him out to the ceremonial area where I had now gathered the guests. There was an slight sea breeze and a few umbrellas which made the heat more bearable.
A string duo played a vibrant version of Pachabel Canon as Gemma, escorted by her dad and her girlfriends walked down the grassy aisle that was strewn with fresh rose petals. Gemma and Mike had been married while they were travelling in London nearly two years ago. I shared with the guests the story of Gemma’s proposal to Mike and also their very small wedding in an informal ceremony in the town hall with their two friends as witnesses. This ceremony, with family and friends, was a celebration of Gemma and Mike’s marriage and also of the family life they had created together.
As part of their ceremony they had wanted to honour the marriage and their family union with a small ritual using four family crystal glasses. One filled with lemon grass, one with water, one with red wine and one with champagne.
As they each took a small sip from each of the glasses I offered the following blessing:
As they both took a sip of lemon grass tea from the first glass: