St Bride's: News - Past wedding couples gather to celebrate the gift of marriage

Updated 21/04/21: We are delighted that St Bride’s doors are now open six days a week for those wishing to worship, pray and visit (closed on Saturdays). Our two Sunday choral serices have also resumed.
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St Bride's: News

Past wedding couples gather to celebrate the gift of marriage

Fine weather and chilled fizz set the scene for a wonderful reunion of couples married at St Bride's.

Over 60 of our past brides and grooms gathered to celebrate the sacrament of marriage and the gift of love at a special service on Sunday 7th July. Some were even married by Dewi Morgan (Rector of St Bride's from 1962-84) over 50 years ago!

We were very pleased to be joined by Dewi's successor, Canon John Oates, who was warmly greeted by those he had married during his incumbency.

"It takes years to marry completely two hearts, even of the most loving and well assorted. A happy wedlock is a long falling in love." - Theodore Parker, 19th century Unitarian Minister

The address (read online) was given by the current Rector, Canon Alison Joyce, and reminded us that a good marriage draws out the best in each partner. As the couple travel through life together, there is always more to discover during the long "falling in love".

Readings, hymns and music were all chosen to fit the theme of marriage. Our fabulous choir under the direction of Robert Jones sang a selection of our most requested wedding music: Ubi Caritas by Duruflé, A prayer for St Columba (A wedding blessing) by Cecilia McDowall, My beloved spake by Patrick Hadley, and perhaps the most requested of all, the Bach/Gounod version Ave Maria. Organist Matthew Morely rounded the event off with the inimitable Widor Toccata. You can Listen Online to the whole service.

wedding service candles_600.jpgDuring the singing of Bach/Gounod's Ave Maria, three candles were lit: one in thanksgiving for the gift of marriage; a second candle to remember those who live with the pain of bereavement after the loss of a marriage partner; and a third candle to commemorate those whose marriages, for whatever reason, have sadly not stood the test of time.

After the service, suitably sparkling refreshments were served in the rectory graden. Many old friendships were renewed together with a lot of catching-up! Penrose Halson kindly gifted copies of her book, Marriages are made in Bond Street, a retelling of true stories from two matchmakers who arranged love in wartime London (mini-series by the makers of Downton Abbey in development!).

This was the first event of its kind at St Bride's and given the overwhelmingly positive response it will become a regular feature in our calendar.

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