Jackson is a student in our theological training program.
He and a few others have a ministry where they go to high schools all over Tanzania and teach about God's plan for sex and marriage. It's pretty awesome, especially considering that adultery is pretty much expected around here, even in the church.
So we think Jackson is pretty great. And when he got engaged to Jehovah, he asked our partners, Mark and Alyssa, to stand in as his surrogate parents for the wedding.
Which then led to the wedding itself being held at our training center.
Since in Tanzania, the groom's friends and family plan the wedding, and Alyssa was the surrogate mother of the groom, she found herself thrust into the middle of wedding planning. And I got to help her a little bit--in fact, I even had a title: Secretary to the Mother of the Groom. It's a real thing over here, and it meant that I got to give the prayer at the reception.
As the secretary to the mother of the groom, I learned all sorts of important things about weddings in Tanzania, like you must have toothpicks to serve the wedding cake (which led to a mad scramble to find toothpicks), and the parents of the groom are supposed to give a gift to the parents of the bride (which led to a mad scramble to find a gift), and that we better have a pen ready because the marriage certificate is signed during the ceremony.
It was one of those really happy days.
(Gil is not in any of these pictures because he was behind the camera. Didn't he do a great job?)
|The secretary and the "mother" of the groom|
|The best dressed guys at the wedding. (Just don't mind the shoes.)|
|His "Aunt" Lauren|
|Photobomb #2 (Johnny ended up in a LOT of pictures)|
|After the ceremony, pretty much everything is about the dancing. The bride and groom danced out of the car, the guests danced their way up to present their gifts, and everything in between.|