Raw, adjective: 6. ignorant, inexperienced, or untrained: a raw recruit.

This Sunday morning I am, uh, working on my sermon.

Say what? Yes. You may now call me Reverend Rach.

Some of you know that I am off to play minister this weekend for the wedding of my old college friends, Melissa and Matt. Last year Melissa asked me if I would do the honors, and I of course agreed, and so last month, I hopped onto the Universal Life Church website (www.themonastery.org) and signed myself up as Rev Rach in just under 4 minutes. My father is currently doing pirouettes six feet under. I can just hear him saying: "I toiled for 4 years in seminary and learned Greek AND Hebrew just so that you could get the same title in shorter time than it takes to walk around the block?!?" Thank goddess I saw him do all those weddings every summer Saturday of my youth, so that I at least have a modicum of sense how to march up there and do this.

You've probably heard about the ULC - a quick read of the website reveals a well-intentioned and fundamentally populist notion of spirituality and pastoral authority, in spite of its utter lack of theological structure and its clear need of a good copy-editor. This online ordination movement has made it possible in the last decade or so for friends and family to officiate at weddings, baptisms, commitment ceremonies, you name it.

So, yes, on Saturday I will be standing up front with M & M and helping them recite their vows. I've got my little draft of my "homily" (heh heh) all written and so far it makes me smile, so that's a good sign, right? I will say, anyone with any wisdom about love and marriage, feel free to send it my way and I'll make some edits. And if you need any christenings or blessings done in the years to come, you know who to call! But just be forewarned, this minister is more likely to be sporting sequins than an alb and stole.


Scott Alan said…
How funny - I can hear your dad's patented "what what WHAT?" right now.

As to wedded advice, the only thing I've learned (and that the hard way the first time) is how little we can control anyone but ourselves. Finding the right person is not nearly as important as BEING the right person.

Good luck.

Scott Johnson
UNL '98
Anonymous said…
have fun! we had a friend read a from the Goodridge decision, which is just a great great reading for a wedding, beautiful words on marriage and from a meaningful source. this may be too long to do this, but oh well, im going to paste the way we edited it here:
"Marriage is a vital social institution. The exclusive commitment of two individuals to each other nurtures love and mutual support; it brings stability to our society. For those who choose to marry, and for their children, marriage provides an abundance of legal, financial, and social benefits. In return it imposes weighty legal, financial, and social obligations....Without question, civil marriage enhances the "welfare of the community." It is a "social institution of the highest importance."
Marriage also bestows enormous private and social advantages on those who choose to marry. Civil marriage is at once a deeply personal commitment to another human being and a highly public celebration of the ideals of mutuality, companionship, intimacy, fidelity, and family.... Because it fulfils yearnings for security, safe haven, and connection that express our common humanity, civil marriage is an esteemed institution, and the decision whether and whom to marry is among life's momentous acts of self-definition....It is undoubtedly for these concrete reasons, as well as for its intimately personal significance, that civil marriage has long been termed a "civil right."

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