The priest who married us gave a beautiful, thoughtful homily that my husband and I will always remember. So many of our guests also remarked on how meaningful a homily it was, which gave me great joy. This is the part of the wedding that is sort of left up to chance--you can only hope that the message given by the priest is one that inspires the bride and the groom and that touches those in the audience. We were so blessed that our priest's homily did just that.
What I loved is that our priest's message contained little nuggets of wisdom, intended to make a difference in the lives of the young bride and young groom sitting before him. His message wasn't highfalutin or intellectual, and it wasn't overly sentimental or nostalgic. It was grounded in the reality that marriage is beautiful, but that it's also very difficult. It was based in an understanding that what we were embarking on would quite possibly be the most rewarding and the most trying journey of our lives. It was intended to inspire us to never give up, to make our marriage last forever.
He gave us a simple and memorable acronym to hold on to: LAST. In order for our marriage to last we need to Listen, Apologize, Support, and Touch. And how true this is. If we can't listen deeply and carefully to our spouse, we will miss so much of what is on their hearts and minds. If we can't humble ourselves by apologizing, we will never learn the beauty of forgiveness and letting go of grudges. If we don't support each other, who will support us? And if we don't touch and show affection, we may forget that we are loved and slowly grow apart.
But if we do strive to do each of these things, our marriage will flourish, it will grow in love, and it will be strong, stronger than whatever tries to come between us.
Our dear priest also cited a passage from one of Thornton Wilder's plays. I don't have a transcript of the homily and so I'm relying on my memory and a google search, but I believe this is the quote he used, which is from Wilder's play, The Skin of Our Teeth:
I didn't marry you because you were perfect. I didn't even marry you because I loved you. I married you because you gave me a promise. That promise made up for your faults. And the promise I gave you made up for mine. Two imperfect people got married and it was the promise that made the marriage. And when our children were growing up, it wasn't a house that protected them; and it wasn't our love that protected them--it was that promise.