Friday, January 9, 2009

Celebrating Epiphany/Theophany and 25 Years of Marriage

January 6 is the celebration of Epiphany/Theophany, the end of the 12-day Christmas season. Khouria Susan and I also celebrate the Nativity season as our wedding anniversary: we were married legally before a judge on December 25, 1983 and celebrated a Blessing of Marriage on January 6, 1984 in an Episcopal Church in Racine, Wisconsin. Therefore, on January 6, we not only marked Epiphany/Theophany, but we also celebrated 25 years of marriage. This is entirely appropriate; while this feast primarily commemorates the Baptism of our Lord, it also celebrates the Wedding at Cana.

We began the celebration with a liturgy, the Holy Qurbana (Eucharist), which included the Great Blessing of Waters, and followed this up with a service of blessing for marriage, including an exchange of rings, which our daughters, Larkin and Cary, provided for the occasion. This was followed by a reception.

We were privileged to have with us about twenty guests, including our assistant bishop, Andreas Mar Cassian and his wife, Amma (Mother) Caitlin of Kodak, Tennessee. Mar Cassian presided from the chair at the Liturgy, while Amma Caitlin celebrated the Blessing of the Waters. I was the celebrant of the liturgy and Cary, aka the Pious Reader Francis, served as Reader and Acolyte. Mar Cassian then renewed the blessing upon our marriage. Mar Cassian and I each preached short homilies.

Khouria Susan and I wish to thank all who attended and all who helped to plan and execute this celebration, especially our daughters, Larkin and Cary, their friends, Larkin’s special friend, Richie, and Mar Cassian and Amma Caitlin Turner. We love all of you very much and pray that you will be richly blessed in the coming year.

The following photos were taken by Audrey. Thank you, dear.

Mar Cassian, the Pious Reader Francis, and myself during the Liturgy.

From left to right, Khouria Susan, myself, Amma Caitlin, Pious Reader Cary Francis, and Mar Cassian, as the blessing of marriage begins.

Exchanging rings. Daughter Larkin is behind Khouria Susan.

We are truly blessed.