On Saturday afternoon I helped a young couple to renew their marriage vows. Nothing unusual in that, you say! Except that they were married only a few weeks ago, in Italy. The groom, Filippo Pellizzon, is Italian, and the bride, Marie Ball, is (perhaps I should now say, was) one of my parishioners. Their marriage took place in Italy according to the laws of the Italian Church and of the Italian State. Marie's parents, Tom and Mary, with other members of the family, went out to Italy for the wedding. But to keep all Marie's friends who could not go to Italy happy, it was the turn of Filippo's parents to come over here to England so that the English could celebrate Marie's marriage. I understand that Mr and Mrs Pellizzon had never flown before or been out of Italy, so this was quite an adventure for them.
The renewal of vows was in the main a reading through of the normal wedding service; I gave my usual sermon about how Our Lord and His apostles were to blame for the wine running out at Cana, and with the nudging of His mother how he over-compensated with new wine (as he does when anyone turns to Him); we sang a couple of hymns; and a very enjoyable service was had by all. The organ was played by a young lady playing for the very first time for a public service (well done, Juliet O'Brien! - I doubt if it will be the last public service you will play at!) I have added a few photos which I took at the end of the service.