It was a hot, sultry Kansas August evening, way back in the 70's. The church was air conditioned to that refrigerated level that folks in hot climates seem to expect. (Go inside and wear a sweater.)We were going to elope, but my mom (the proverbial minister's daughter, very anti-church) said, "Your grandfather will be crushed if you don't get married in a church." Ok, we'll have a very small church wedding.DH's mom, said, "We have a family friend who is a photographer." My mom said "My coworker's daughter bakes wedding cakes." DH's mom wistfully said, "you WILL have flowers, won't you?" The moms got together and reminisced about being wartime brides and not having real "weddings." My mom mentioned every day for weeks how she got married in a gray dress....So, there I was, in the church on August 18th, in my traditional white wedding dress. The organist played "sunrise, sunset" just before the wedding march. The evening sun streamed through the stained glass windows onto the candle-lit church as I walked down the aisle on the arm of my grandfather, thinking this is more than I ever wanted, but it is a lovely moment, especially for our mothers.But when the minister got to the part about "does anybody object" there was a brilliant flash of lightning, illuminating the whole church through the stained glass windows, followed by an extremely loud crack of thunder. In the stunned silence that followed, my paternal grandmother quavered "oh, nooooooo." Then the giggles started from those assembled, and before long there was a lot of laughing from the guests, punctuated by loud cracks of thunder and flashes of lightning, through the remainder of the ceremony. During the wedding reception the storm continued, the rain came down in barrels and buckets, and the guests laughed and told jokes about rain being good luck, and a fertility symbol, wink, wink. We got soaked running to the car; and the rice that got thrown on us stuck to our wet clothes. As for the wonderful, memorable honeymoon, backpacking into Rocky Mountain National Park, well, it poured every day (except the night it snowed) but we didn't care one bit.I'm so glad to have that beautiful memory. My grandparents are gone, my DH's parents are gone, and DH has been gone for over nine years, but I can still vividly remember the beauty of that church lit into brilliance by lightning behind stained glass windows, and the joy of that shared laughter.RDW
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