Today’s Wedding

Dear Peg and Family,
We were recently invited to attend my grandson’s wedding. It is some time since we have attended a Church wedding. The last wedding that were actually at, was when my daughter married her partner Roger in their front garden. That time the ceremony was conducted by a ‘celebrant’ one of a growing band of people who have been authorised by the Government to marry couples. This was a service that didn’t exist when I was young.
Gareth’s wedding was being held at Rangi Ruru’s Presbyterian Church. The service was transferred to this venue from their first choice. St Andrews Chapel, this was where Gareth went to school. However this chapel was so badly damaged in one of the earthquakes or after shocks, it couldn’t be used. The Rangi Ruru Church is a sister church to St Andrews and is old but well preserved, it’s constructed entirely of wood, but really beautifully crafted. a lasting credit to it’s builders of some 150 years ago. It is situated in a narrow lane off Merivale, and driving down this lane, we came across many others, all driving around  aimlessly, obviously looking for space to park. These folk were all weaving in and out the rows of parked cars, as we got close to where the church was situated. We were wondered what was going on. They all couldn’t be going to the wedding, or could they? But we soon understood when we discovered that we were in the middle of a popular Farmers Market.
We need not have worried as there was ample parking alongside the Church. Our attendance at the Church at this Easter time brought memories flooding back to me. Some 60 years ago Laura an I were married at Easter in a iconic Church at Port Chalmers. It seems now, that it was only yesterday, where did all the years go?
Over the years since 1952 there have been many changes to the marriage ceremony as well, in both fashions and accepted behaviour. I noticed one departure from is considered the norm was when the Bride’s mother marched down the isle alone. She strode out twenty yards ahead of the procession of the bride and her father, all on her own. This action was explained during the speeches, when she got to her feet to put forward, in a very forcible manner, her views on the women’s place in this day and age. This should spell out to Gareth a message, that perhaps in the future, tread warily, as latent ‘Mother in Law’ problems could be lurking somewhere in the background.
Many of the women looked as though they had just stepped out of their shower, and their wet hair to me looked uncombed. I noticed also that some of the male guests were actually wearing jeans. In my eyes too, the woman over the years seemed to have got bigger, much, much, bigger in fact, and I suppose to disguise their weight gain, instead of a fitted dress, they all seemed to have only draped several lengths of material over their body. Without fail, they all wore long trousers no matter what they wore on top. I know I may have got it all wrong, but this is what is regarded as the high fashion of today.
The service was short and sweet, a couple of readings, and all the other things you expect, such as the exchange of rings and vows. There were no hymns which suited me, I never sing in Church, but just mouth the words. The register was signed and that was all.
After the Service, we had two hours to fill in. So we made a visit to the Hospital to visit Laura. While we were there, Gareth and his new bride also called and gave Laura a bunch of flowers. The reception was being held across town at the Riccarton Race Course. There, they have extensive grounds and buildings, which is surprising, seeing that they only have two meets a year. However many outsiders make full use of this space. Every Sunday 7oo stall holders assemble on the grounds for a ‘Market’, run by Rotary. As in common with Racecourses throughout New Zealand, the extensive ‘out buildings’ are lavishly fitted out with facilities, I found this out during the War, when I was inducted into a racecourse by the Army, who had taken it over.
I suppose the highlight of the celebrations was the Barbecue, that Rod and Hillary threw for all the guests and folk and their children, that didn’t get invited to the Church and the formal breakfast. He had a spit roast, and loads of food for the 100 guests. The kids ran riot in the spacious grounds, and being blessed by perfect weather, everyone had a great day.
Love from Christchurch,
Wally.

We were recently invited to attend my grandson’s wedding. It is some time since we have attended a Church wedding. The last wedding that were actually at, was when my daughter married her partner Roger in their front garden. That time the ceremony was conducted by a ‘celebrant’ one of a growing band of people who have been authorised by the Government to marry couples. This was a service that didn’t exist when I was young.

Gareth’s wedding was being held at Rangi Ruru’s Presbyterian Church. The service was transferred to this venue from their first choice. St Andrews Chapel, this was where Gareth went to school. However this chapel was so badly damaged in one of the earthquakes or after shocks, it couldn’t be used. The Rangi Ruru Church is a sister church to St Andrews and is old but well preserved, it’s constructed entirely of wood, but really beautifully crafted. a lasting credit to it’s builders of some 150 years ago. It is situated in a narrow lane off Merivale, and driving down this lane, we came across many others, all driving around  aimlessly, obviously looking for space to park. These folk were all weaving in and out the rows of parked cars, as we got close to where the church was situated. We were wondered what was going on. They all couldn’t be going to the wedding, or could they? But we soon understood when we discovered that we were in the middle of a popular Farmers Market.

We need not have worried as there was ample parking alongside the Church. Our attendance at the Church at this Easter time brought memories flooding back to me. Some 60 years ago Laura an I were married at Easter in a iconic Church at Port Chalmers. It seems now, that it was only yesterday, where did all the years go?

Over the years since 1952 there have been many changes to the marriage ceremony as well, in both fashions and accepted behaviour. I noticed one departure from is considered the norm was when the Bride’s mother marched down the isle alone. She strode out twenty yards ahead of the procession of the bride and her father, all on her own. This action was explained during the speeches, when she got to her feet to put forward, in a very forcible manner, her views on the women’s place in this day and age. This should spell out to Gareth a message, that perhaps in the future, tread warily, as latent ‘Mother in Law’ problems could be lurking somewhere in the background.

Many of the women looked as though they had just stepped out of their shower, and their wet hair to me looked uncombed. I noticed also that some of the male guests were actually wearing jeans. In my eyes too, the woman over the years seemed to have got bigger, much, much, bigger in fact, and I suppose to disguise their weight gain, instead of a fitted dress, they all seemed to have only draped several lengths of material over their body. Without fail, they all wore long trousers no matter what they wore on top. I know I may have got it all wrong, but this is what is regarded as the high fashion of today.

The service was short and sweet, a couple of readings, and all the other things you expect, such as the exchange of rings and vows. There were no hymns which suited me, I never sing in Church, but just mouth the words. The register was signed and that was all.

After the Service, we had two hours to fill in. So we made a visit to the Hospital to visit Laura. While we were there, Gareth and his new bride also called and gave Laura a bunch of flowers. The reception was being held across town at the Riccarton Race Course. There, they have extensive grounds and buildings, which is surprising, seeing that they only have two meets a year. However many outsiders make full use of this space. Every Sunday 7oo stall holders assemble on the grounds for a ‘Market’, run by Rotary. As in common with Racecourses throughout New Zealand, the extensive ‘out buildings’ are lavishly fitted out with facilities, I found this out during the War, when I was inducted into a racecourse by the Army, who had taken it over.

I suppose the highlight of the celebrations was the Barbecue, that Rod and Hillary threw for all the guests and folk and their children, that didn’t get invited to the Church and the formal breakfast. He had a spit roast, and loads of food for the 100 guests. The kids ran riot in the spacious grounds, and being blessed by perfect weather, everyone had a great day.

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