I loved getting to know Jamil and Nasrin. Jamil contacted me first and I liked him immediately on the phone. Then I found out that they were going to the Napa Valley for a pre-honeymoon (when they could get the time off from their busy schedules) and we started talking about The Bay Area, my home for many years. I relished knowing that they would be having a wonderful time at places that I loved. They had no wedding party so the small table behind me was perfect to hold Nasrin's bouquet while she and Jamil held hands.
They lit a candle in memory of those who had passed on and wrote beautiful words themselves to honor these loved ones: 'Although death has separated us physically, faith and love has bound us eternally. Though we cannot see you, we know that you are here. Though we cannot touch you, we feel the warmth of your smile as we begin this new chapter in our lives. Today we pause to reflect upon those who have shaped our character, and molded our spirit and touched our hearts. (PAUSE)
I got to offer the poem 'Undying Love' by Rabrindranath Tagore as part of their ceremony. You'll want to look this one up. It's really lovely! They brought it to my attention and it has special meaning for them.
Before Jamil and Nasrin exchanged rings, we did a 'Ring Warming Ceremony' in which we pass the rings through everyone's hands first so that they can offer a silent blessing, hope or prayer for Nasrin and Jamil and their new life together.
Then with great joy I pronounced them husband and wife and offered this blessing upon their marriage, 'May the love which has brought you together continue to grow and enrich your lives, bringing peace and inspiration to each of you and to those who know you. May you meet with courage the problems which arise to challenge you; may you meet with strength the troubles that beset you. Jamil and Nasrin, may your marriage be one of ever-growing depth and meaning, understanding and love which you give to one another in the life you share. May you find far more in life than either would have found alone. May you find tolerance for the prejudices, reverence for the beauties and respect for the truths you will encounter as you go forward together.'
I got a lovely note from Jamil with these pictures in which he said, 'Thank you so much for such a wonderful ceremony. It was exactly what we wanted and we couldn't have asked for more.' Music for my ears and my heart!