Bride Angela and Groom Ron were wed barefoot on a spectacular summer's eve in Sedona, Arizona amidst the red rocks. Two of their sweet friends were present to witness their elopement. Since Ron is an energy worker, the opening of the ceremony began as he did a silent meditation whilst handling Tibetan bells. Another unique aspect of their ceremony was the reciting of their ring vows. They chose to repeat after me in unison which is why the picture shows their rings simultaneously half way on each of their fingers.
Deeply spiritual individuals, as we co-created their ceremony, it was important to include a Native American Blessing and incorporate the elements. They purchased a beautiful smudge feather in Sedona and as the palo santo stick was lit, I had the honor of using the feather to smudge them. The act of smudging is done to clear the space and provide a healing and sacred space for the ceremony. The smoke attaches itself to negative energy and as it clears it takes that negative energy with it, releasing it into another space to be regenerated. In addition, together we faced the four directions and honored the elements (earth, fire, water, and air) while incorporating a blessing for their marriage. To illustrate, when we faced the west and honored the element of water, Angela and Ron dipped their toes into the cool waters of Oak Creek and these words were spoken: Blessed be this marriage with the gifts of Water-- the rushing excitement of a raging river, the gentle flow of this creek, the soft and pure cleansing of a rainstorm, and a commitment as deep as the ocean itself. May the Spirits of Water ensure that your love for one other, like the serenity of the deep blue ocean, be the oasis that forever surrounds you, Angela and Ron. may you be well loved, and love well, letting the surety with which Water makes its journey to the sea, flowing over rocks or around trees, carving canyons, even turning into vapor and riding a cloud, ever serve as a reminder that with love all is well and will endure. Thank you Spirits of the Water, Ahehee (Navajo word for Thank you).
As the sun began setting, thunder boomed and lightning illuminated the sky adding to the vibrant colors. We felt the gentle drops of rain. Bats emerged, dragonflies were dancing, cranes and raven were flying by; all of nature was celebrating and blessing their union!
Jen Paul, Life Cycle Celebrant, Ordained Minister, Wedding Officiant, Life Coach, Death Doula