Stella Weaver writes:
One highlight of the summer has been my trip to Germany to attend the wedding of Marina and Simon; Marina came to spend three months at the Lee Abbey House, Blackburn in 2001. We have kept in touch ever since, and I was both surprised and delighted to receive an invitation to her wedding in May.
I spent the first two days with Kathrin and her family (Kathrin came to Blackburn in 2003). During my stay, I visited the school where Kathrin’s mum works as an Art Therapist with handicapped people. It was fascinating to see how the students’ have developed through art. Kathrin showed me some folders containing work built up over a number of months, which she had worked with some of the students on; Kathrin helps at the school when she is not at university. Granny lives at home with the family and tends their beautiful garden. She grows vegetables, some of which we ate ― delicious! She knits socks too; I was given a pair for myself and a tiny pair to bring back to Blackburn for a baby in the parish.
Marina looked radiantly happy as she walked down the aisle on her father’s arm. The service in Gennan was easy to follow and similar, yet different, to weddings I’ve attended in England. As Marina and Simon walked down the aisle to leave the church, tiny children who were at the wedding threw rose petals all down the aisle in front of them. Once outside the church we were offered a glass of juice or wine to toast the couple; this led to a very relaxed time of photograph-taking.
As the day progressed, I discovered a number of unusual customs, including presents wrapped in cellophane so guests could see what had been bought for the bride and groom. The party, which went on into the early hours of the morning, was full of activities to celebrate the couple and wish them well for the future.
I spent four days with Marina’s parents, sister and gran after the wedding before returning to England. This was a happy time for all of us. Marina’s mum was able to share a lot of how much preparation had gone into the wedding and Marina’s father could not wait to play the video and relive the events of a happy and fulfilling day for everyone.