Friday, September 28, 2012

Working Our Way Through THE WEDDING BOOK, and Choosing An Officiant

The Bride's Year Ahead. The Ultimate Month-By-Month Wedding Planner. Planning And Inspiration For The Perfect Wedding

According to our wedding planning book, (which I have already read cover-to-cover and have been studying religiously so that I can efficiently plan this wedding sans a professional wedding planner), I seem to be right on schedule for being Twelve Months Ahead. According to this chapter's "Month's To-Do List", I'm supposed to:

1. Choose and meet with the officiant.

2. Set the wedding date.

3. Prepare a budget.

4. Book a reception hall and/or hire a caterer.

When I first read this chapter, I saw the first item listed and thought, "What's an officiant?!" and decided to skip that one and move to #2. I read #2 and M and I decided on a early fall wedding, and would decide on a date depending what was available per our chosen venue. Then I went onto #3 and asked myself, "How can I prepare a budget if I don't know how much things cost in California?", and skipped that one until I could do more research to set a realistic budget for M and I. When I moved to #4, it seemed like more decisions hinged off of this one thing than anything else, so we put most of our efforts into tackling this decision. Once we narrowed down our venues, established a tentative budget,and I read more up on what an "officiant" was, I immediately knew who I wanted to "officiate" (a.k.a. marry us)! None other than my high school resident priest, Father Tito, whom I had a great friendship with ever since high school.

Ft Tito guided me through many community service experiences and retreats during my time at Moreau Catholic HS, and we grew closer during my time on the Campus Ministry Team (CMT) during my senior year of high school. So much so, that he invited me to join him, and a small, special group of students and their families the summer after I graduated to go on a mission trip to the Philippines. Once our mission trip was finished, I was invited to stay with him and his family members throughout the Philippines, further immersing myself in the Filipino culture.

For those who know Ft. Tito, they know him as a well-traveled, avid marathoner, seasoned photographer, incredibly intellectual, and very funny Catholic priest. He also is known for taking his roles as such very seriously, yet knows how to translate faith into something high schoolers can understand (such as he did with me!). We kept in touch over the years, meeting up in Hawaii when he visited family out there, as well as always meeting for sushi when I would come back to California to visit. He was one of the first to know about my feelings for M when we initially started talking, and gave me great advice about how to navigate those feelings and further figure out where I wanted our relationship to go.

When I realized I wanted to ask Ft. Tito to marry M and I, I immediately remembered he had just departed on almost a month long trip to Europe. I was too overcome by my excitement that I had discovered what "officiant" meant, and who I wanted to "officiate" our wedding that I shot him a message anyways, announcing our engagement, and begging him to make time for us in his busy schedule to perform such a special duty for us. Much to my delight, he replied a few days later, accepting my request, stating, "I'm so happy for you and it would be an honor to officiate your wedding day"!!

As this month of September quickly comes to an end (and M and I celebrate 2 whole months of being engaged), I can say, with great relief, that I can successfully check off all four items off on Twelve Months Ahead To-Do List, and look ahead to the Eleven Month Ahead To-Do List, artfully titled, Beginning with Essentials. Stay tuned!

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