Nicole and William were a dream to work with. Easy going and genuinely lovely, I looked forward to each meeting. And so you can imagine my disappointment for them when they realised that their NGV garden ceremony would occur at the very time Formula One racing cars would take to the nearby Grand Prix track. Needless to say, exchanging vows to the piercing sound of F1 engines was not the soundtrack they had in mind for their ceremony! Fortunately, they were able to reschedule the date and fortunately for me, retain their celebrant!
And so, a week earlier than originally planned, Nicole and William's black tie ceremony in the Grollo Equiset Garden at the National Gallery of Victoria took place. Stylishly attired guests arrived to the music of the Baker Boys Band and excitedly awaited Nicole's entrance.
And what an entrance it was! It was one i'll never forget. Though Nicole and William were supported by a bridal party of eight, all attendants mingled with guests prior to the ceremony before taking their seats in the front row. Then a lone bagpiper, Lachlan McKenzie, entered the garden playing the Highland Cathedral. Nicole and her proud father David followed him along the long and winding path. The combination of a beautiful, beaming bride and the arresting sound of the bag pipes commanded everyone's full attention.
It was important to Nicole and William that all loved ones actively participate in their ceremony. I therefore asked all family members to stand and offer their blessing and pledge their support for the marriage. Following this, I invited their friends to stand and offer theirs.
After sharing stories about the happy and rewarding journey Nicole and William have made together, their siblings then came forward and presented readings. One of which was Edmund O'Neill's Marriage Is A Promise Of Love.
Marriage is a commitment to life - to the best that two people can find and bring out in each other. It offers opportunities for sharing and growth no other human relationship can equal, a physical and emotional joining that is promised for a lifetime.
Within the circle of its love, marriage encompasses all of life's most important relationships. A wife and a husband are each other's best friend, confidant, lover, teacher, listener, and critic. There may come times when one partner is heartbroken or ailing, and the love of the other may resemble the tender caring of a parent for a child.
Marriage deepens and enriches every facet of life. Happiness is fuller; memories are fresher; commitment is stronger; even anger is felt more strongly, and passes away more quickly.
Marriage understands and forgives the mistakes life is unable to avoid. It encourages and nurtures new life, new experiences, and new ways of expressing love through the seasons of life.
When two people pledge to love and care for each other in marriage, they create a spirit unique to themselves, which binds them closer than any spoken or written words. Marriage is a promise, a potential, made in the hearts of two people who love, which takes a lifetime to fulfill.
"William, I give you this ring, that you may wear it, as a symbol of the vows we have made on this day."
After they had exchanged rings and sincere and romantic vows I had the honour of declaring William and Nicole to be husband and wife. I loved seeing just how happy they were at that moment in the ceremony.
We signed the marriage certificates without a musical accompaniment, the silence punctuated only by laughter and good wishes from guests.
Congratulations Mr and Mrs B. Two gracious, kind-hearted and thoroughly lovely people. You are quite clearly, perfectly suited.