No question on the subject on today's blog!
I turned up nice and early for yesterday's wedding...just as well.
The registrar was already there , the chairs set out and flowers and bunting everywhere. Unfortunately the door into the office was locked so we set him up in the chapel...this interlude meant we had time to chat....he checked with me the form of words I had to use. It was vital that we were able to conform to all the stringent safeguards in place to prevent bogus weddings.
Fortunately that meant we had established a sort of working relationship..He couldn't start to do the paper work until he had spoken to the bride and the groom...I made sure that the couple spoke to him directly they got there!
Half way through the service he was asked to leave in order to move his car which was blocking someone in! The proceedings were halted ..we waited..I resumed my career as a stand up comedian.
When he got back he asked to see me and the wedding couple outside.....he had had an emergency phone call. The wedding was not legal because I was an Anglican priest in a non conformist chapel.
To say we were astounded was the understatement of the year! No sign of Ecumenical forbearance appeared. There had to be a way round this.
As an Anglican priest I have always been my own registrar and married hundreds of people.
All sorts of solutions were put forward...which included a quick trip up a long hill to the Anglican Church!
Eventually our brave and kindly registrar faced the congregation and made a joke about getting two weddings for the price of one.....Then he married them again....they retook their oaths whilst the packed chapel looked on in amazement.
It was certainly a lesson to me....crossing all my tees and dotting all the I"s is an essential part of the wedding service as is using the proper names of the couple rather than a nick name......OK...lesson learned... Happy morning after to all concerned.....
The couple were not put out at all thankfully. They didn't want a conventional wedding. They certainly didn't get one!