Helen & Johnny

“We spoke with 3 other officiants before we found Reverend Mary Rose. From the very moment I heard her voice on the phone, I knew she was the one for us. She spoke clearly, had a very soothing and pleasant tone in her voice and helped answer all our questions with ease. On our wedding day she arrived on time, which was all I could ask for considering it was Memorial Day weekend! She did a quick rehearsal with our parents and bridal party prior to the ceremony and made sure everything would go off without a hitch. The ceremony was absolutely beautiful. It was emotional, touching, funny, everything we could’ve asked for. There was a moment I had to read my personal vows and started getting choked up. Rev. Mary-Rose told me to take my time and helped me through the moment. I cannot thank her enough for her professionalism and support. I highly recommend her. In fact one of my bridesmaids will be working with her for her October wedding as well :)

Brilliantly Wed May 23rd, 2014

Helen & Johnny

Videography: Myther Ganibe
Photography: Cly by Matthew
DJ: Vincent Formanes
Venue: VIP Country Club

Need Some Inspiring Words?

Try some of these:

AFFECTIONATE: adoring, caring, considerate, devoted, loving

AFFECTIONATELY: dearly, devotedly, fondly, lovingly

BEAUTIFUL: attractive, lovely, stunning

BEAUTY: attractiveness, charm, elegance, grace, loveliness

CHARM: attraction, fascination, glamour

CHERISH: esteem, cultivate, nurture, value

COMPANION: mate, partner, soul mate

DELIGHT: enjoyment, gladness, happiness, joy, pleasure

DEVOTION: affection, fidelity, loyalty, dedication

DIVINE: godly, heavenly, glorious, wonderful, wondrous, sublime

DIVINELY: blissfully, gloriously, splendidly, sublimely

ENDLESS: continual, eternal, perpetual, unceasing, unending, timeless, never-ending

ENDLESSLY: ceaselessly, constantly, forever, eternally

FAITHFUL: constant, steady, steadfast, true, loyal, devoted

FAITHFULLY: devotedly, loyally

FOND: affectionate, dear, devoted, loving

FOREVER: eternity, always

GRACE: elegance, dignity

HAPPILY: blissfully, joyfully, joyously, cheerfully

HAPPINESS: bliss, cheerfulness, contentment, delight, joyfulness

HAPPY: cheerful, glad, joyful, joyous, merry, pleased

HOPE (noun): faith, optimism, belief, desire, wish

HOPE (verb): anticipate, await, count on, expect

HOPEFUL: hoping, optimistic, promising

INFINITE: endless, limitless, unbounded, immeasurable, eternal, never-ending

INSPIRE: excite, stimulate, awaken, uplift, energize, enliven, arouse, invigorate, animate, exhilarate, motivate, impress

JOY: bliss, delight, elation, gladness, happiness

LOYALTY: constancy, devotion, faithfulness, fidelity

MARRIAGE: matrimony, nuptials, wedding, union

MARRIED: wedded

MARRY: wed, combine, couple, link, unite, join

NOBLE: royal, ethical, moral, virtuous, honorable, gracious

OPTIMISTIC: bright, sunny, upbeat, promising, positive

PEACEFUL: quiet, serene, still, calm

PRICELESS: precious, inestimable, invaluable, valuable

PROMISE: pledge, vow

RENEW: regenerate, restart, refresh, rekindle

RENEWAL: invigoration, rebirth

RESPECT (noun): admiration, appreciation, esteem, favor, honor, regard

RESPECT (verb): honor, regard, value, admire

SINCERE: genuine, honest, real, heartfelt

SINCERELY: genuinely, honestly, really

SINCERITY: candidness, genuineness, honesty

SPIRIT: being, heart, mind, psyche, soul, energy, life

TOTAL: complete, entire, whole, absolute, pure, sheer

TOTALLY: absolutely, completely, entirely, fully, purely, wholly

UNDENIABLE: certain, sure, unquestionable

UNDYING: immortal, eternal, everlasting, enduring, lasting

UNIQUE: extraordinary, rare

UNITE: connect, join, meet, merge, unify

UNSELFISH: selfless, generous, charitable, giving

VIBRANT: intense, strong, vivid, dynamic, energetic

VIRTUOUS: ethical, moral, noble, principled, pure

WARM: compassionate, tender

WISDOM: insight, knowledge

WORTHY: deserving, desirable, suited, honorable, noble

Loving Day June 12th

From Time U.S. article posted June 11th, 2012 titled Loving Day

In 2007, Mildred Loving released this statement:

Loving for All By Mildred Loving

Prepared for Delivery on June 12, 2007,The 40th Anniversary of the Loving vs. Virginia Supreme Court Ruling Interracial Marriage Announcement

“When my late husband, Richard, and I got married in Washington, DC in 1958, it wasn’t to make a political statement or start a fight. We were in love, and we wanted to be married.  We didn’t get married in Washington because we wanted to marry there. We did it there because the government wouldn’t allow us to marry back home in Virginia where we grew up, where we met, where we fell in love, and where we wanted to be together and build our family. You see, I am a woman of color and Richard was white, and at that time people believed it was okay to keep us from marrying because of their ideas of who should marry whom.

When Richard and I came back to our home in Virginia, happily married, we had no intention of battling over the law. We made a commitment to each other in our love and lives, and now had the legal commitment, called marriage, to match. Isn’t that what marriage is?

Arrested in the Middle of the Night

Not long after our wedding, we were awakened in the middle of the night in our own bedroom by deputy sheriffs and actually arrested for the “crime” of marrying the wrong kind of person. Our marriage certificate was hanging on the wall above the bed.  The state prosecuted Richard and me, and after we were found guilty, the judge declared:””Almighty God created the races white, black, yellow, malay and red, and he placed them on separate continents. And but for the interference with his arrangement there would be no cause for such marriages. The fact that he separated the races shows that he did not intend for the races to mix.” He sentenced us to a year in prison, but offered to suspend the sentence if we left our home in Virginia for 25 years exile.  We left, and got a lawyer. Richard and I had to fight, but still were not fighting for a cause. We were fighting for our love.

Though it turned out we had to fight, happily Richard and I didn’t have to fight alone.Thanks to groups like the ACLU and the NAACP Legal Defense & Education Fund, and so many good people around the country willing to speak up, we took our case for the freedom to marry all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court. And on June 12, 1967, the Supreme Court ruled unanimously that, “The freedom to marry has long been recognized as one of the vital personal rights essential to the orderly pursuit of happiness by freemen,” a “basic civil right.”

My generation was bitterly divided over something that should have been so clear and right. The majority believed that what the judge said, that it was God’s plan to keep people apart, and that government should discriminate against people in love. But I have lived long enough now to see big changes. The older generation’s fears and prejudice shave given way, and today’s young people realize that if someone loves someone they have a right to marry.

Surrounded as I am now by wonderful children and grandchildren, not a day goes by that I don’t think of Richard and our love, our right to marry, and how much it meant to me to have that freedom to marry the person precious to me, even if others thought he was the “wrong kind of person” for me to marry. I believe all Americans, no matter their race, no matter their sex, no matter their sexual orientation, should have that same freedom to marry. Government has no business imposing some people’s religious beliefs over others. Especially if it denies people civil rights.

Freedom to Marry for All

I am still not a political person, but I am proud that Richard’s and my name is on a court case that can help reinforce the love, the commitment, the fairness, and the family that so many people, black or white, young or old, gay or straight seek in life. I support the freedom to marry for all. That’s what Loving, and loving, are all about.

For more info go to www.LovingDay.org

Mexican Weddings ~ Honoring Madrinas and Padrinos

Mexican WeddingMexican culture is recognized for hosting vibrantly colorful celebrations in the company of dear family and friends.  Weddings are no exception.  Prominently a devout Roman Catholic culture, the wedding ceremony is centered around the Mass.

Mexican weddings tend to be large with many wedding party attendants. The attendants are called Madrinas and Padrinos and they have special roles in the wedding.

A traditional couple getting married are sponsored, financially, by their Godparents, to act as Padrinos, sponsors of the wedding. They are mentors to the bride and groom throughout their engagement, and even after they are married.  The bride and groom honor them with a place in the wedding program. The Padrinos may present the couple with a rosary and a Bible during their wedding ceremony.

The flower girl and ring bearer may be dressed as miniature versions of the bride and groom. The Madrina de Ramo carries flowers for the Virgin Mary. The Madrina de Laso carries a jeweled or beaded rope that is placed around the couple as they say their vows, to symbolize their union.  The Madrina de Copas carries the wine glasses for the toast. Madrinas or Padrinos may carry a prayer book, a rosary, a guest book for signatures and an embroidered pillow to commemorate the day.

There also is a Madrina de Velacion, who the bride has chosen to turn to for guidance throughout her married life. God parents of the bride and bridegroom give the couple a prayer book, rosary, and kneeling pillow for the ceremony.

The last persons in the procession carry the recuerdos, which are remembrances, similar to wedding favors, given to the guests. In addition there can be several sets of wedding sponsors, similar to god parents, who look after the couple promising them financial and spiritual aid.

Brides in Mexico may wear a mantilla veil, or a slim dress with a bolero jacket, or even a Flamenco-style dress with ruffles at the hem. In many Latin American countries, the bride wears a light blue slip beneath her dress.  In lieu of carrying flowers she may carry a fan or a prayer book. The groom may choose a Mexican wedding shirt.

During the marriage vows, to symbolize unity, a large loop of rosary beads or a lasso is placed in a figure eight shape around the shoulders of the couple. Some couples choose to be entwined in orange blossoms as this symbolizes fertility and happiness. In some families, a double rosary lasso is also given by one set of the parents and may be blessed with holy water three times in honor of the trinity.

A special person or couple places the lasso around the shoulders of the bride and groom, groom’s shoulder’s first. The lasso may also be tied around their wrists. The couple wears the lasso throughout the remainder of the service symbolizing their love which should bind the couple together every day as they equally share the responsibility of marriage for the rest of their lives.

At the end of the ceremony, the lasso is removed by either the couple which placed the lasso on the couple, or the priest. Traditionally, the lasso is given to the Bride as a memento.

It is customary for a Mexican groom to give his wife a wedding present of thirteen gold coins, which are then blessed by the priest during the marriage ceremony. This gesture represents the groom’s commitment to support his new wife.  Couples who choose to be more modern will each exchange gold coins.

A truly touching tradition during the ceremony happens when the Bride places a special bouquet at the feet of the Virgin of Guadalupe image to thank and pray for their marriage.

Most weddings will end with mariachis as a part of the recessional.  As the newlyweds leave the church, red beads may be tossed at them, to bring good luck. The reception is always family oriented and festive. Everyone is presumed to be invited.

This Day I Married My Best Friend

This day I married my best friend~Author Unknown

This day I married my best friend

…the one I laugh with as we share life’s wondrous zest,

as we find new enjoyments and experience all that’s best.

… the one I live for because the world seems brighter

as our happy times are better and our burdens feel much lighter.

… the one I love with every fiber of my soul.

We used to feel vaguely incomplete, now together we are whole.

John Ridley for Americans for Marriage Equality

Author John Ridley and a majority of Americans support marriage equality.

John Ridley is an Emmy Award winning commentator and writer for Esquire and Time magazines as well as a contributor to CNN, MSNBC, Fox News, and NPR.

He is the author of seven published novels. The most recent of which is What Fire Cannot Burn. Collectively, his works have been chosen as editor’s picks or “best of the year” by The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, the Los Angeles Times, Entertainment Weekly and the Baltimore Sun.

Ridley is the Founding Editor of That Minority Thing (www.thatminoritything.com), a nonpartisan website that provides news and opinions in support of a wide range of voices, including ethnic, racial, religious, disabled, gender, and sexual minorities.