My sister's wedding part two...

It's said that if it rains on their wedding day the couple will be wealthy so the future looks bright for my sister and her new husband. Suffice it to say among the readings there was the passage from the Song of Solomon recalling how "many waters cannot quench love..." and such was the case.

But the roof of St. Clement's didn't leak and everything inside was warm and very properly Episcopalian in its aesthetic. A small choir of men accompanied by organ led the music and the rector was dressed in cassock and surplice. The people of the church had taken great care in remodeling the facility not to destroy its classic charm, the rood screen, chancel choir, wooden arched ceilings, and high (but unused) east altar. The building was stone, the doors were red, the bride was radiant, the groom steady and tall, the mother nervous. All in all fairly typical.

The liturgy itself was orderly and tight. This is the Episcopal Church after all, the place where they painstakingly keep all the architectural details but can celebrate the Liturgy as a kind of avant garde jazz. The taste of St. Clement's, though, is country parish high church, small but well done and such was the case here. Of course, being the Episcopal Church the rector had to add the word "partnered" throughout the service like shards of broken bottle on a village green but otherwise she wisely kept to the book. When Western liturgies refuse to succumb to the temptations of "relevance" they are marvelous, elevating, things.

In the hours that followed we danced and talked and renewed old acquaintances in the way that always seems to happen at such events. As the night wore on we, one by one, began to take our leave, at once tired by the events and refreshed by their renewing effect. I was among the early departures as I needed to be up and ready at 4 the next morning for the journey along the river road now in its fourth year.

And so their journey, my sister and her tall, shy, Italian scholar, begins.

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