Life is a Challenge!

By Honeycombebeach


Today was the day our friends, Keith and Sue, got married at Christ Church, Swindon.  We have had a wonderful day, as you can see by the photographs in my collage.  The weather was amazing for the end of March, sunny with just a hint of a breeze, the Church, which was beautifully decorated, was packed with family and friends of the bride and groom, the singing was fantastic, the worship group and organist were excellent, the Vicar who led the service was great and the preacher was “spot on” with his sermon.

After a great service and lots of photographs, including one of Sue with her Mum in her well decorated wheelchair, and one of Keith's son, Dan, wearing Aunty Helen's hat and his son looking rather bemused, we all went into the Leisure Centre next door for tea and cakes, and what an array - we were spoiled for choice!

At 4.30 we were invited back into the Church for champagne and speeches.  By this time, the Church had been transformed by moving many of the pews and setting up tables - and there were plenty of drinks on offer too - including a fairly local beer, which Mr. HCB said was “very drinkable” - another wonderful time together and the first time a wedding reception had been held in the Church.  The bride’s father, second row up on the far right, gave an amazing speech - all the more brilliant, bearing in mind that he is four score years and ten!

The bridegroom’s speech was amusing and witty, followed by Peter, his younger brother, and also best man - at the top right - who spoke warmly of his older brother, Keith, being a fantastic role model.  Peter had no idea that it was National Pencil Day, but had bought a pencil for everyone with an eraser on top, inscribed with Keith and Sue’s names and the date, so that we could remember them in whatever way we chose.

You may be wondering why I have a photograph of a red carpet at the bottom of the collage - Keith told us that when Sue was a little girl and attended Christ Church with her parents, she used to walk up and down the red carpet and say that one day, when she got married, she would walk up the aisle on the red carpet.  The church has been refurbished fairly recently and the red carpet has been replaced by a wooden floor.  However, someone in the Church felt that the carpet shouldn’t be thrown away, so kept it, and today, honouring that wish of many years ago, and just for Sue and Keith, a portion of the red carpet was laid so that Sue could walk up the aisle on it.  What a lovely story!

After the speeches, there was a Ceilidh and hog roast - sadly I couldn’t dance, but I did tap my feet!  The hog roast and accompanying salads were fantastic and although there were more than 300 people there, everything went very well and there was a wonderful atmosphere.

The bride and groom left at about 9 p.m. and then we and many others helped to move pews, tables and chairs and collect glasses, plates and other debris, so that the Church will be ready for services tomorrow morning.  

What was so amazing about today is that although Keith was previously married to Karen, who sadly died just over 5 years ago, he and Sue actually met in Christ Church some time later and became friends - after that, their love blossomed and as the saying goes, "the rest is history!"  It was wonderful, too, that many of Karen’s family were at the wedding, having travelled quite a distance - and it was great to see the way they love and support both Keith and Sue.  A true inspiration to all of us. 

All in all a wonderful day - it was great to meet so many people we haven't met for some time and also family and friends of both the bride and groom.  We hope and pray that Keith and Sue will have a long and happy life together.

“Being deeply loved by someone 
     gives you strength, 
          while loving someone deeply 
               gives you courage.”
Lao Tzu

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