It was an exciting day for Al and Carol James. They were “sponsors” at a Filipino wedding.

The young groom, Jose, had been the security guard at some condo units where Al and Carol had recently lived for a few months. He had grown to become a friend and had extended to them the honour of asking them to be sponsors or ninong and ninang (godfather and godmother) at his wedding.

Al shares that it was a great chance to participate with their Filipino friends and to absorb more of the culture where they live and minister.

On the morning of the wedding, Al and Carol picked up the groom and several of the wedding party and drove to the house where the pre-wedding breakfast was held. Al shares, “They filled us with a delicious Filipino foods; rice, dinuguan (pig blood soup), chicken livers and other assorted delicacies.

Then they proceeded to the wedding, which was a civil ceremony with a magistrate. The wedding took place in the municipal hall in a hearing room which had been arranged especially for the ceremony. Civil ceremonies are the usual choice in the Philippines. Al explains, “Church weddings are very expensive here, but civil weddings are considerably less so.”

After the wedding ceremony, the wedding party and guests returned to the bride’s family house for another nice reception, with lots more food.