Monday, January 28, 2008

First "Tridentine" Wedding at Grotto in 40 Years!

An extraordinary wedding.....

On Friday, January 4th, at 4:00pm, Assumption Grotto was graced with the Sacrament of Marriage in the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite (EF) for the first time in 40 years. You may recognize it by another name, the so-called "Tridentine" or "Traditional Latin Mass" (TLM).

I did not post the photos sooner because I was unable to connect with the bride and groom to get their permission to share the pics online (and I did not want them to learn about them via the web!).

Kathryn & Thomas Hulett became husband and wife at this majestic celebration.

Clicking on any pic should enlarge it on your computer. Bloggers: feel free to post any pics you want, but kindly provide a link back to this post (click the time stamp below for the url).

An Unplanned Shoot
I had gone to take photos during what I thought was going to be the First Friday Adoration for the Sacred Heart, which normally takes place from 9:30am to 6:30pm each month. We have adoration daily, save Sundays in the convent chapel. I also knew the Christmas decorations would soon be coming down and had not been able to take many pictures.

What? A Wedding?
When I got there shortly after 3:00, the Blessed Sacrament had just been returned to the Tabernacle and preparations for the wedding were underway. I was short on time and was planning to leave before the wedding until........the altar cards came out.

I was already feeling bad because I missed a wedding between Christmas and New Years that I had been asked to shoot some months earlier. I hadn't committed, and never commit to weddings because I have many variables in my personal life, especially my mother's ill health, and I would not want to blow the only opportunity someone has to have pictures of such a special day.

What? A "Tridentine" Wedding?
Seeing those altar cards, my first plea to God was, "Oh Lord, don't do this to me - you know I won't be able to resist this". A short time later, I learned who was getting married. I did not know the bride, but I knew her father, Mike, who recently passed away after a long illness. I met him in the school hallway of Grotto about two years ago when, seeing my camera, he introduced himself and asked if I was the same Diane who was active on the web in Catholic forums and blogs. We had some good conversations about the faith and the liturgy.

That was it. I finally realized that Mike's Guardian Angel was working overtime along with mine to get me to stay. How could I walk out now? I asked the Blessed Mother for her assistance as I so often do when shooting anything sacred (and because I really have no idea what I'm doing). Below is the result of that prayer.

I did not find out until the sermon that not only did I capture this beautiful wedding, I captured a piece of history for Assumption Grotto. Deo Gratias!

You may have noticed that the bride and groom where exchanging vows at the beginning, rather than mid-Mass. I thought this was awesome.

One thing to note for couples considering a wedding in the Extraordinary Form: Start kneeling daily for longer and longer periods until you can do so comfortably for at least an hour. There was no place for chairs in the Sanctuary and from what I'm told, this is the way it use to be.

I am speaking from experience when I tell you that if you can only kneel for 5 minutes today, with time and practice, you can easily work your way up to an hour over a period of time. I recall my first days at Grotto where I use to break a sweat kneeling for just 7 minutes or so during the short Eucharistic Prayer in the Ordinary Form (or New Mass).

There's one more thing about getting married at Grotto, either in the Ordinary or Extraordinary Form (and you get to choose): No one escapes the pre-Cana classes by Fr. Eduard Perrone, Grotto's pastor. If you want to understand the beauty of marriage in the context of theology of the body, you will have your fill.

Te Deum Laudamus! Home