Over the weekend, Jessica had the privilege of being the pianist for a wedding. We know the bride and groom mostly through our work in Christian youth camps, where they have been both campers and leaders. This was the third wedding in our churches this year, and it’s always wonderful to celebrate, especially with three couples that are fully committed to making the Lord the centre of their new families!
While there are certainly similarities between Irish weddings and American ones, there are huge differences as well. Probably the biggest difference is time. When we got married in America, our wedding took a total of about three hours. This weekend, we spent 11 hours at the wedding, and we left early. The ceremony itself is fairly similar to American ceremonies, but afterwards there is a long break while the wedding party has pictures made, and the guests entertain themselves for about three hours before dinner. The dinner is a sit-down meal, usually incredible, reminding us of what it means when Revelation talks about the wedding feast in Heaven. After dinner are the “afters”, which is a time for dancing, cake, etc. Close friends and family are invited to the entire event, while those who didn’t know them as well are usually invited only to the ceremony and afters. Although it took a little getting used to, we have learned to greatly appreciate the Irish way of doing weddings and devoting an entire day to the celebration of the covenant of marriage.