Wedding in Cebu, Philippines: Video: Wedding/Marriage Ceremony

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Wedding Ceremony

Watching these videos bears you witness to our marriage in a traditional Filipino Catholic wedding rite.

Please turn on captioning in the video players as the speech sound was terribly recorded live by the video cameras' built-in microphones. The acoustics in the altar of the Redemptorist Church is such like one in the middle of a large cavern. All the loudspeakers are equally distanced at the sides of the church and the sound emanating from them virtually clash in the middle and cancel out each other, leaving only multiple echoes for us to hear. There was only one microphone supplied for the bride and groom, barely sensitive enough to pick up our soft and nervous voices.

Wedding Ceremony, Part I: Scrutiny, Exchange of Consent, Confirmation of the Marriage Bond, and Blessing of the Arrhae and Rings

Scrutiny is that part of the wedding ceremony when the priest asks whether you do or do not want to enter into this particular marriage and whether you have come to the wedding by your own decision or a shotgun is being poked at your back. If all the answers to the questions are deemed positive and truthful, the priest performs the confirmation of marriage and blesses the wedding rings and arrhae. The Holy Bible was included by Father Martin in the blessings and prayers as it was already there but is not exactly part of the wedding ceremony by tradition.

The following is a transcript of the video: (Text in parenthesis indicates what should have been.)

Fr. Martin:

IVY, did you come here today in your own free will to bind yourself forever in love and service of your husband?

Ivy:

Yes, Father.

Fr. Martin:

WENDELL, did you come here today in your own free will to bind yourself forever in love and service of your wife?

Wendell:

Yes, Father.

Fr. Martin:

(Wendell & Ivy,) Are you ready to raise as good Christians the children whom God will give you?

Wendell (& Ivy):

Yes, Father.

Fr. Martin:

WENDELL & IVY, since you both wish to contract Holy Matrimony, please join your right hands and express your intention before God and His Church.

IVY, do you take WENDELL, here present, to be your lawful husband according to the rite of our Holy Mother, the Church?

Ivy:

Yes, Father. (Yes, I do.)

Fr. Martin:

Do you give yourself to him as his wife?

Ivy:

Yes, Father. (Yes, I do.)

Fr. Martin:

WENDELL, do you take IVY, here present, to be your lawful wife according to the rite of our Holy Mother, the Church?

Wendell:

Yes, I do, Father. (Yes, I do.)

Fr. Martin:

Do you give yourself to her as her husband?

Wendell:

I do. (Yes, I do.)

Fr. Martin:

And here forth, please now pray together.

Wendell & Ivy:

Grant us, O Lord, to be one heart and one soul from this day forward for better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, in sickness and in health, until death do us part.

Fr. Martin:

And I, by the authority of the Church, calling on all here present as witnesses, confirm and bless the bond of marriage which you have contracted in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

Let us pray. Bless, O Lord, your servants WENDELL & IVY with sufficiency of material possessions which these arrhae symbolize so that they may use them to attain eternal life through Christ Our Lord.

And bless, oh Lord, these rings so that your servants WENDELL & IVY who will wear them may live in mutual love and unbroken loyalty through Christ Our Lord.

May this Holy Bible as heard give nourishment all day as they turn to their daily life.

Wedding Ceremony, Part II: Giving of Wedding Rings and Arrhae

The giving of wedding rings and arrhae was almost a private ceremony. The priest, groom and bride, bearers, Matron of Honor and Best Man were standing in a circle at the altar. The attending people did not see the proceedings of the ceremony and can only hear the bride and groom speaking softly from time to time. Father Martin explained each symbol of marriage before giving them: the wedding rings, the arrhae and the holy bible which is not really part of the traditional wedding rites.

I have attended weddings before but I have remained ignorant about how this part of the wedding ceremonies proceeded. Not until now, when I am already a part of this hush-hush circle. This video will give you an exposed and close up view of what went on during that time.

The wedding lines to be said were spoken with indistinctly soft and nervous voices, adding to the solemnity and gravity of the event. The voice recording here is worse than the first video. Please turn on closed captions in the YouTube player to read what the bride and groom are saying.

In the end, the bride and groom shyly turns around to see the attending people, a shade of fright in their faces.

Here is how the traditional giving of wedding rings and arrhae ceremony went:

Priest unties the wedding rings from the ring bearer's pillow. He explains its meaning and significance in marriage before handing one of the rings to the groom who then puts it on the bride's finger.

Wendell:

IVY, wear this ring as a sign of my love and loyalty in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

Priest gives the other ring to the bride who then puts it on the groom's finger.

Ivy:

WENDELL, wear this ring as a sign of my love and loyalty in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

Priest takes the coins from the coin bearer's pillow. He explains its meaning and gives it to the groom, who puts it on the bride's palm and hold it together.

Wendell:

IVY, I give you this arrhae as a pledge of my dedication to your welfare in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

Ivy:

And I accept them.

Priest takes the Holy Bible from the bible bearer and encourages the couple to read it. He then returns it to the bible bearer. The ceremony is finished and the priest presents the newlyweds to the attending people.

The music used in this wedding video is the instrumental version of No One Like You. The vocal version, sung by Sarah Brightman, was used in the prenuptial flashback video. It connects the two videos together as past and present--as a dream comes true.

Wedding Ceremony, Part III: Candle Lighting, Putting of Veil and Cord, Offertory

This part of the wedding ceremonies is a photographer and videographer's nightmare. We have planned to enact the candle lighting, veiling and cord of unity rites during the singing of Holy, Holy, Holy as indicated in the wedding missalette but the candle lighting was called in as Father Martin prepares for the offertory. While the two candles were lighted by Mr. and Mrs. Auman, you can see the priest's assistant in the background calling in the offerers for the offertory. We are getting only far shots of the offertory and just in time to capture all the offerers in procession.

It was a busy scene. People were passing to and fro. Best Man Donald Sabandeja and Matron of Honor Sarah Vercide helped in assisting Father Martin receive the offers. While this was going on, Mr. Romeo Seno and Ms. Rowena Vercide went up and bestowed the veil on the wedding couple. It was already quiet when it was time for Mr. Benjamin Auman and cousin Ms. Diana Auman to put the cord of unity.

At the beginning of this video, you will notice the father of the groom approaching Wendell. He was concerned about our regretable failure to notify beforehand two of their relatives, who were asked to represent the groom's side as offerers, to indicate where the offerings were placed for them to pick up. Thankfully, other people filled in for them.

We have always wanted a song of prayer for this video and May It Be speaks this prayer for us. Here is the lyrics:

May it be an evening star
Shines down upon you
May it be when darkness falls
Your heart will be true
You walk a lonely road
Oh, how far you are from home

Mornie utúlië (Darkness has come)
Believe and you will find your way
Mornie alantië (Darkness has fallen)
A promise lives within you now

May it be the shadows call will fly away
May it be you journey on to light the day
When the night is overcome
You may rise to find the sun

Mornie utúlië (Darkness has come)
Believe and you will find your way
Mornie alantië (Darkness has fallen)
A promise lives within you now

A promise lives within you... now.

This song was originally used as a soundtrack to the movie Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Rings and is meant to be a sending off song for the fellowship, who set out on a struggling and lonely quest through darkness to destroy the evil ring. Well, it's a different ring we're talking about in this video. It is also a different promise we are vowing here. Still, the song seems to speak about marriage, a fellowship that is meant to be last.

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