Wedding Walk

We got married!

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Bride, groom and guests. Photo by Lowdy Brabyn.

On Saturday 22nd July Canon Andrew Bowden led our wedding ceremony in St Mary’s, Syde. This tiny church in the Cotswolds that has been a site of worship and gathering for over a thousand years.  The church was packed with friends and family, including children, babies and even a few dogs!

It’s good luck if it rains on your wedding day! Photo by Ed Nattrass

 

The guide books will tell you that St Mary’s boasts a small stained-glass roundel from the 14th century depicting St James of Compostella.  Sadly this was stolen some years ago.  In its place there now rests the pilgrim’s scallop-shell that I collected at the conclusion of my camino to Santiago de Compostella last year.

Canon Bowden spoke with warmth and insight about pilgrimage as a preparation for marriage, and suggested that our journey, far from over, was beginning anew with the vows we made that day.

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St Mary’s, Syde, with mother of the bride Frederica Freer, Canon Bowden and best man Ben Lynch.
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The bride wore Holly Fulton, umbrella held by her Matron of Honour Atalanta Weller

After the ceremony the bride and groom led a small pilgrimage a mile across the fields to the reception at Isabel’s childhood home. A few bold guests donned appropriate footwear and carried umbrellas down an ancient trackway, avoiding mud and cows and sheep and enjoying the kiss-gate in true pilgrim fashion!

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Keep those wedding shoes fresh!

It was a beautiful weekend, all the more remarkable because Issy planned it while we walked through Britain and in the three weeks since we returned.  Thanks to all the kind family members, friends and neighbours who gave so generously and partied so joyfully to mark this special occasion.

We now have time to reflect further on our pilgrimage and catch up on writing and building on what we learned.

Keep checking in here for further posts about the folk we met between Glasgow and Iona, the events we have attended since then and news of future collaborations with Projects For All.

 

Post Script:

No prizes for guessing the opening hymn, thank you Bunyan and Vaughan Williams!

 

Who would true valour see,
Let him come hither;
One here will constant be,
Come wind, come weather.
There’s no discouragement
Shall make him once relent
His first avowed intent
To be a pilgrim.

Whoso beset him round
With dismal stories
Do but themselves confound;
His strength the more is.
No lion can him fright,
He’ll with a giant fight,
But he will have a right
To be a pilgrim.

Hobgoblin nor foul fiend
Can daunt his spirit,
He knows he at the end
Shall life inherit.
Then fancies fly away,
He’ll fear not what men say,
He’ll labour night and day
To be a pilgrim.

 

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Wedding map by Christy

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