Wednesday, July 24, 2013

What is the biggest mistake you ever made and "vowed" never to repeat?

What is the biggest mistake you ever made and "vowed" never to repeat?

I have thought about this question a lot. I have made mistakes in weddings I know, but they have been small ones, mostly typos.  I guess the biggest mistake was misspelling the bride's name on a complimentary bound copy of the ceremony that I provide the wedding couple.  I knew the correct spelling and made a typo when I was preparing it. 

I apologized to the couple and prepared a new copy with the correct spelling.  I have taken steps to not repeat the mistake.

This would be the shortest blog entry in my history if I stop now so I will relate a story about a mistake I was witness to.

I was doing a wedding at Bee Tree Park at the mansion gardens. I had done the rehearsal on Thursday and was showing up an hour early, as is my custom, on Saturday to set up for the wedding. I was surprised because there were some guests already sitting in the chairs that had been set up for the wedding. One of the items I was carting in was a music stand.

One of ladies there saw the music stand and came over to me and said, " I sure could use that, I left mine at home. Could I borrow it?"

I explained that I needed it.  She asked "Are you playing music at the wedding?" "No, I told her. I am the minister." "No, " she stated, "that can't be....I am the minister."  " Well I did the rehearsal on Thursday," I told her. " And nobody has called to tell me I'm no longer doing it.  Let me ask you, what is the name of the Bride and Groom?"

She and the guests in the chairs were at the wrong wedding. The wedding she wanted was at the other end of the park.  And it was already ten minutes after the wedding she was doing was supposed to start.

I learned a valuable lesson. Whenever I do a wedding in a park I always pin down exactly where the ceremony is to be held.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

What is the most moving wedding you celebrated

I noted a Post on Facebook from a wedding officiate in another state that was a series of questions about weddings and the officiate's response.  I found my responses were different so I decided to post the first questions and MY answers to this weeks's WedNewsDay blog and cover some of the others over the next few weeks..

What was the most moving wedding you celebrated?

I have done many moving weddings in the twenty years that I have been ordained.  To pin down one as the most moving is tough. I've had a few that have moved me equally.

I married a couple who had been high school sweethearts but had gone to separate colleges. They had drifted apart and married other people. Some time after the man had obtained a divorce he started thinking of his high school sweetheart. He had been prompted to think of her by hearing : I know You're Out There Somewhere by the Moody Blues.  He didn't know what her name was now or where she was living. He did some research and didn't find her. He refused to give up and hired a detective to find her.

It took him a little time to work up the courage to contact her. Finally he got up the nerve and called her on the phone.  As luck would have it, she just finalized her divorce that week.

Over time they built their relationship and about two years after they got back together in spirit and after many visits back and forth between the two cities they came to me to get married.

The Moody Blues were more than just the spark that got them back together, the group had been very popular and their favorite during the time they were dating in high school.

The Moody Blues were soon to be playing at what was then known as the Riverfront Amphitheater.  I contacted Riverfront and Moody Blues management and secured the right to perform the ceremony at the Moody Blues concert in St. Louis.  It was 100 degrees that Saturday and I was in a tuxedo.

I integrated Moody Blues references and lyrics into the ceremony and married the couple at the concert with 18,000 guests.

It was a very moving ceremony and day as we got to sit in great seats to watch the Moody Blues after the wedding sans the tuxedo.