Sunday, May 28, 2006

Minister meeting

Busy weekend. Met with officiant, baker, and DJ. Also (finally!) picked up my evening gown from the tailor. (Un)fortunately, most of these meetings were not what I expected. I thought that the meeting with the minister would be boring but she was actually very nice and accomodating, open to lots of ideas. This being a Christian ceremony, she explained how she really wants us (and our guests) to understand how this is a celebration of our love for God. We will have two premarital counseling sessions (one fairly close to the day of to hammer out the ceremony details and one at least a week before the second meeting to really get to know her, her thoughts on marriage and for her to get to know us). She said that it's important to get to know her b/c we'll be sharing some "intimate" info, I think she said. But what struck me was that I was reminded that this will actually be a very intimate act between us and God. As a very private person, I always found the idea of being "on display" for a day daunting and uncomfortable but to see it as very intimate really changes my perspective. And throughout this planning process, I really lost sight of the role that God plays. It is after all God that brought us together and I believe with God as our center that he will hold us together. And now I feel better about everything b/c even though a million things may go wrong on that day, none of it will matter.

  • Rev. C was also very understanding about how some of our relatives may not necessarily understand English so she suggested incorporating bits of Chinese here and there (like perhaps saying a line in Chinese during the vows part or during the ring exchange) but not to necessarily translate the entire service (though we could since it will only be about 20 minutes long). She also reassured me about the importance of including my non-Christian family (she's done a lot of work with couples with different faith backgrounds; she even asked if I wanted to incorporate some Buddhist stuff since that is what my parents sort of raised me with, to which I promptly said no since I am not Buddhist in any way). And I really appreciated how she went through a sample order that we can follow (doctoring parts here and there to personalize it, of course), including how we'll sign the marriage license thing with the witnesses and everything during the rehearsal the night before (but she won't sign it until it's official the following day) so that there won't be this weird spot during the ceremony where we stop to fill out paperwork and stuff. She also read us parts of prayers that were really beautiful, so beautiful that I want to share it but I know that I'll butcher it by paraphrasing so I won't even try.
  • Rev. C also pointed out that when picking out the readings, we should consider the tried and true stuff like 1 Cor. 13 (the one with the love is patient, love is kind, etc.) without being concerned that our guests may find this repetitive b/c it is actually very different when you're hearing it at your own wedding. She also said it was OK to have non-Biblical readings but that there must be at least one New Testament passage.
  • Rev. C's daughter is also engaged so aside from all her experience doing weddings, it is good to hear her perspective about being on the other side (though I'm pretty sure she's officiating at her daughter's wedding).
  • Rev. C stressed the importance of counseling during marriage. She said that studies have shown that premarital counseling often doesn't do much -- the key is to get counseling if you need it when problems arise b/c ppl often wait until it's too late. I think she said she'd give us something to recognize the signs. She is a former social worker so she's had experience counseling ppl for many, many years. Maybe that's why it was so easy/comforting to talk to her.
One thing I forgot to bring up was her fee. I'm sure it's reasonable but just for info's sake. Wow I didn't think I'd go into all this detail about just one of the meetings but I guess I'm so excited/relieved/happy about it all. And I'm really too tired to go into the mediocre (and worse) meetings right now.


catwomannyc said...

Another way you can do is to translate some of the key passages into Chinese and print them on your program.

myBFCW said...

Yeah, I'm thinking of doing that too (so much work to translate though!).