|I have run out of photo space in|
blogger, so I decided to reuse this
photo of my parent's wedding instead
of taking the time to upload some
filler photo to photobucket
There's been a few weddings in the neighborhood since I got here. The winter is wedding season in India. You can hear the celebrating at night. I haven't actually gone to one.
As for our wedding... well we think this is what we're going to do...
I am here on a tourist visa. Which is what I am supposed to be on, because a tourist visa is really for tourism and anything not covered under the other visas. There is no Indian fiance visa.
It expires in late April. We need to have a little cushion of time for converting my tourist visa to a different kind after we marry. (We'd take our marriage certificate in and then there's a process where like they visit the house to make sure we're really married, etc.)
In India, weddings are big. And Ryan's family says we'd have to not only invite family but also the entire church or people may take offense.
We pretty much just spent our money on the move.
In India, there are different marriage laws for each religion, and one called the Special Marriage Act, which is basically civil proceedings. Even though there is a Christian Marriage Act many Christians choose to have the legal and the church ceremonies separate and have a court marriage and a church one. This is especially recommended online for people who are marrying a foreign national (me) because a court marriage is very respected and has a good legal trail or something.
Ryan's grandmother lives in the UK and they haven't seen her in 5 years and they think she'd come for the wedding given enough notice. My friend Lydia is planning on coming as well as my maid of honor, and the longer from now it is the better leave she can acquire for a proper India holiday.
Also, Ryan and I got guidance from the Lord last year when we prayed about if we should marry sooner or later and He answered sooner by directing us to Genesis 24, where Rebecca is asked by her family to delay her going for ten days and Abraham's servant says he doesn't want to delay completing the task that God had helped him with and Rebecca said she'd go. That is a lot of reason why I moved here now, and it is also to be taken into account because it was God's answer to 'should we marry sooner or later' not 'should I move there sooner or later.'
All this adds up to everyone seeming to think that Ryan and I should do the court marriage in late Jan/early Feb and then do the church ceremony and reception in spring or summer.
We are still praying, but unless God changes our course, that seems what we'll do.
Both would be considered our real wedding as I believe a)marriage is a religious, social, and legal institution and recognizing those all together or separately all makes sense. And b) as this world loses respect for marriage I think it'd be great for all marriages to be celebrated more, not just our own.
Also, since many Christian weddings do both court and church ceremonies separately here in India, no Indian I've mentioned this to has batted an eye. But Americans have questioned if I'm being greedy or something.
I'd love your prayers as we finalize this decision and well, for the paperwork. You all know how much I