Ukrainian celebrations are an all-day event... very much unlike our own wedding, where we were pulling away in our limosine less than three hours after the whole event started! This couple was married on a Sunday, immediately following the morning services. No one was dismissed after the regular church sermon. After the regular final prayer, the pastor simply went into the second part of the service... the wedding. We were still standing from that final prayer, and the wedding party started walking down the aisle. I had never seen a service run like this, and I really liked it. It gave every church member an opportunity to watch them be married, including those who would normally not come to a separate wedding ceremony. The pastor also used this opportunity to encourage the entire church to warmly welcome this new couple into the fold.
After the church ceremony was over, church was dismissed and those who were "invited guests" traveled over to a rented school cafeteria for a dinner and program. There was an entire program, filling a full typed page of events. We did not stay for the full program, but I do have some pictures of some of the things that went on. Everything you can imagine was included on that program... from songs, to children quoting poems about Christian love (our children were included on that), to individuals giving a public congratulation, to power-point presentations, and even to funny skits.
Congratulations to Misha and Carolina, and we pray that God's blessings will be rich in their lives. Here are some pictures of the day God made these two become one:
WEDDING CAKE - ALL HAND-MADE (except the topper) BY MISHA'S AUNT
PARENTS PERFORMING A UKRAINIAN CUSTOM
DAVID'S PUBLIC CONGRATULATION FROM OUR FAMILY AND FROM SIMFEROPOL BAPTIST CHURCH TO THE BRIDE AND GROOM
A VERY HILARIOUS SKIT PERFORMED BY TWO OF MISHA'S SISTERS, NELYA & LARISA (these girls are really in their early 20's!)