Weddings – Romance and Elopements in Mendocino
A meditation on Mendocino Weddings
The joining of two people under the auspices of the State and/or a spiritual tradition is always a major event. It doesn’t matter what the size of the wedding: if only two lovers, a minister/officiant and a witness, a wedding is joyful. It often represents the joining of more than two beings, but the creation of families, especially when one or both bring children into the relationship. The joining of two is also the joining of their families and their friends, creating extended families and new friendships.
This year is surprising: few people are calling to arrange any size wedding from an elopement to a full wedding. I have talked with area innkeepers and they have experienced a significant drop in inquiries and suspect that its is the ‘economy.’ As a minister, I am saddened that the decision to become married has become an economic decision. We know, here, that two seeking to be married, regardless of the number of observers can arrange a ceremony and use of Mancha’s garden for very little – the cost of a room. This is not about the Stanford Inn by the Sea, but our respect for the process, the currents that underlie the joining of two beings.
Marriage is a sacrament here: In Mendocino, the “divine is active’ in joining two people in nature – in an area of incredible beauty and energy. In our secular time, “nature” is the source of grace. And grace is evoked from within, urged by our resonance with – our deep appreciation of the beauty of this special place. Here a wedding is “grace” and here lives are joined in beauty. The act of marriage is more than the recognition by a State of a relationship – but an act of “nature” moving lovers to a reality beyond themselves.