I was speaking with a married couple a few years ago who argued that marriage was a secular ceremony and there was no need for any religion in the service. They were proud to have achieved a completely non-religious wedding ceremony for their own big day.
They considered the Bible to be outdated not wanting a bar of it and were delighted that a marriage celebrant witnessed their ceremony on a favourite beach.
They told me that they had searched online finally finding the perfect poem for their ceremony.
I was curious and asked what it was. They began together reciting it by heart: Love is always patient and kind, slow to anger…always forgives…and lasts forever.
I didn’t spoil their fantasy and instead responded with a “wow, that IS beautiful” and asked them to send me a copy.
This weekend’s second reading is this beautiful hymn to love from St. Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians. It is powerful in any translation but a favourite of mine is the 1611 King James Version read below by Tony Blair at Diana’s funeral in 1997.