St Stephen the Martyr Catholic Church Wedding: July 8, 2017
Anatole and Kat’s wedding at St Stephen the Martyr Catholic Church had many beautiful and heartfelt moments that I’m pleased to share with you today. This couple lives at the intersection of many cultures: Filipino, Greek, Gamer, and Catholic, just to name a few. Their wedding was a celebration of all of their different communities, their love of family, and their love for one another. Here are the details:
Getting Ready and Ceremony
We started the morning at a local hotel where both Anatole and Kat got ready in separate rooms. Their daughter joined Kat and her parents in their room and it was fun seeing her try to entertain herself amongst all the hair and makeup. I loved the details Kat chose. Her shoes are drool worthy and her tokens for the ceremony were handmade with love.
It’s common in Philipino weddings to include a veil that symbolized the couple coming together as one. Kat’s mother made the veil for her wedding and included an infinity symbol to show they are together for all eternity. This same symbol found in the ceremony when the yugal or cord is also draped over the couple during the ceremony in a figure “8”. This symbolizes eternal fidelity. Coins are also given to the bride by the groom during the ceremony. These symbolize his dedication to her welfare. I was glad that these items were on hand before the wedding so it was easy to photograph them. Sometimes things move so quickly before and during a ceremony it’s hard to get a good close up photo. Thanks to Kat’s planning I had no issues!
When we arrived at St Stephen the Martyr Catholic Church we had a first look prior to the ceremony. It was fun to see the joy in Anatole’s face. Both shared tears of joy. After a few photos of the couple together it was time for the main event. The ceremony was beautiful and included a lovely analogy to the biblical story of Christ turning water into wine. Family is a big part of all of the cultures that Kat and Anatole share so it was not surprising that they had A LOT of extended families. After the wedding and during the cocktail hour we did a variety of family groupings. While we did photos friends enjoyed drinks, lawn games, and the lovely view of the river outside the Renton Community Center.
During the reception dances from several different nations provided entertainment. The bride and groom and the bride’s family even got in on the action! It was mentioned that Kat’s mom was a Tinikling dancer (stick dance from the Philippine’s Spanish colonial era) once and she was asked to participate. Kat, her brother, and Anatole all took a turn as well. Anatole did a traditional Greek dance (with style I must add) as well.
Food from across the world was served as well including a whole pig (always a favorite of mine!). The eclectic combinations of cultures were fun and exciting for everyone, but most of all it was a great example of the couple themselves. Kat and Anatole epitomize all of the best parts their heritages provide. They are family centered, loving, fantastic hosts, filled with life, and genuine in all that they do. Lydia and I both felt adopted by the time the night was over. If it hadn’t been for the sheer exhaustion we felt we would have stayed all night!
Kat and Anatole, thank you for the honor of sharing your wedding day with me!