Overlapping our team from Meridian was Diane Cornelius (AKA “the wedding lady”) and her team here for weddings in the Mole! They had already spent some time in St Louis and had helped put together three weddings there and arrived on our campus, though slightly soaked from rain, rearing and ready to go.
We had SIX couples from the Mole to get married! So the team helped put everything in order for the big day, including providing the proper paperwork, the dress, the suit, the shoes, the flowers, the rings, and finally a bible and photographs documenting this day for each of the couples.
Photo credit: Davis Hopper
Though I really had no part in the planning or preparation for the big day, Miss. Beth and I had the privilege of attending the wedding. It was such a beautiful ceremony to witness. These couples, unable to financially afford to get married before this, were finally able to say I do, or at least the Creole equivalent!
In Haiti, a single mother is seen as the lowest in society, and mothers who have been unable to officially get married carry a certain stigma. There was such joy and freedom wrapped up in this ceremony, although very atypical of the big day in America. Even with six couples all getting married in one ceremony, and all the craziness that came along with that and all the camera phones in the crowd, it was almost even better than any wedding I’ve experienced in the states! Most of these couples already had several children and started a life together or even got married in the eyes of the church/God but today it was made legal and official. And the knowledge that this ceremony meant so much to them made it all worth it!
So many of the couples and guests came up to say thank you to me for being even a tiny part of this great day by being there and everyone had such gratitude to the team and the mission for helping make it all possible. Glory to God for all of it! After the big day it was time for the team to head back to the states and thus we said goodbye to the last team for our time this summer!