June 23, 2001

DEARLY beloved, we are gathered together here in the sight of God, and in the face of this company, to join together this Man and this Woman in holy Matrimony; which is an honourable estate, instituted of God, signifying unto us the mystical union that is betwixt Christ and his Church:

It rained on the day of my wedding. She smiled, and said:

"It will rain during your marriage too."

This holy estate Christ adorned and beautified with his presence and first miracle that he wrought in Cana of Galilee, and is commended of Saint Paul to be honour-able among all men: and therefore is not by any to be entered into unadvisedly or lightly;

Right before I got married, I asked a woman who had just celebrated her 60th year of marriage, how she did it. She paused. I was waiting for the big secret.
The bit of advice that would give me success.

And in the end, she looked at me, and said:

"You take the good with the bad".

But enter it reverently, dis-creetly, advisedly, soberly, and in the fear of God.

Seven years of marriage. 4 moves. 4 animals. 3 years of renovations. 7 jobs. 1 university graduation. 3 cars. 5 rooms painted and a hallway wallpapered at 2 am. 1 deck built. 1 elopement and 1 wedding. The birth and death of Gabriel. 2,557 days.

O ETERNAL God, Creator and Preserver of all mankind, Giver of all spiritual grace, the Author of everlasting life; Send thy blessing upon these thy servants, this man and this woman, whom we bless in thy Name; that they, living faithfully together, may surely perform and keep the vow and covenant betwixt them made, and may ever remain in perfect love and peace together, and live according to thy laws; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

We are older, wiser, sadder and stronger now. We have known perfect love, and agonizing sorrow. We have known blessing, and it's deprivation. Choosing love, each day. Choosing to put yesterday to bed, to leave tomorrow to its self,
and to live in today.

I Cheryl, take thee Owen, to be my wedded Husband,
to have and to hold from this day forward,
for better for worse, for richer for poorer,
in sickness and in health,
to love and to cherish, till death us do part,
according to God's holy ordinance; and thereto I give thee my troth.

I think of these words.

With this ring I thee wed.
With my body I thee worship.
With all my worldly goods, I thee endow.
In the name of the Father, and the Son and the Holy Ghost, Amen.

This day, and every day. For as many days as I am given. I choose you.