Friday, April 29, 2011

The wedding

First of all, I’ve been glued to coverage of the tornadoes that hit my hometown, Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi and even just an hour or two from where I live now. I feel blessed that my family was protected, but my heart breaks for those who have lost so much. These were all familiar places to me, and it’s hard to see the devastation.

And there’s no good way to transition but the rest of this post is about the royal wedding.

I intended to write this post when I got up at 5:30 this morning, but there is no way I could have written anything coherent. I just barely made it to the couch and turned on the TV.

I haven’t really kept up with too much of the hype. I don’t have cable anymore, so I missed the Lifetime specials and TLC’s offerings. But I knew I wanted to watch the wedding. I lived in London for a semester, and it is exactly six years ago that I came back to the States.

I wanted to see Kate and the pomp and circumstance, but I also wanted to see the sights of London. I worshiped at Westminster Abbey several times, I watched the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace and Hyde Park was one of my favorite places to walk. Until today, I didn’t actually know the name of the Horse Guards Palace, but I distinctly remember getting lost in my first couple of weeks and ending up there with no idea what it was.

The other part of my desire to watch the wedding was that when I was in London I interned at a major American news agency there. And my time there coincided with Charles and Camilla’s wedding. It was by no means anything close to the scale of this one, and the coverage was pretty minimal compared to all the coverage of Prince William's wedding. But I sat in the news bureau watching it and taking dictation from the reporters that were in Windsor for the civil ceremony and blessing. Today I couldn’t decide if I wanted to be there as a spectator or there as a journalist covering the wedding.

But it was also nice to get a front row seat from my living room this morning, and I thought the whole thing was beautiful and classy. Kate looked beautiful, and her dress was perfect.

In addition, the bishop of London's message was in line with a Bible study discussion I had on Thursday about turning from ourselves and actually finding joy in loving and glorifying God through praise and worship of Him and also through the serving others. This portion is from the transcript of the homily on the royal wedding website:

“Marriage is intended to be a way in which man and woman help each other to become what God meant each one to be, their deepest and truest selves.

“… A spiritual life grows as love finds its centre beyond ourselves. Faithful and committed relationships offer a door into the mystery of spiritual life in which we discover this; the more we give of self, the richer we become in soul; the more we go beyond ourselves in love, the more we become our true selves and our spiritual beauty is more fully revealed. In marriage we are seeking to bring one another into fuller life.”

The bishop ended with a call for all of the people enamored with the wedding and this couple. We’ve seen royal marriages be destroyed, and I think there is a lot of hope that this one will be successful. But the public eye and scrutiny by the paparazzi is not easy to deal with, so I liked the archbishop’s ending and I hope this is true for them:

“I pray that all of us present and the many millions watching this ceremony and sharing in your joy today, will do everything in our power to support and uphold you in your new life. And I pray that God will bless you in the way of life that you have chosen …”

OK, I think I’ve gushed enough. Now I just need to plan a trip back to London, so I don’t just have to see my favorite places on TV.

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