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Sunday, October 27, 2013

I'm a believer!

It's a New Jersey love story.

After 40 years and two children, Cindy Meneghin and Maureen Kilian are finally married.

In New Jersey.

It was a 10 year legal battle that was fought all the way up to the NJ Supreme Court where Judge Mary Jacobson looked square into the eyes of Governor Chris Christie - and he blinked.

That kind of victory called for a marriage in front of three priests.

We never really doubted it would happen. Okay, so there were moments. Okay, so there were more than a few moments. And, lots of those moments were filled with tears of disappointment and anguished cries of frustration.

But, when you are in the presence of Cindy and Maureen, you find yourself in the presence of such amazing love and devotion to their relationship and their family, you find it hard to believe that anything or anyone could stand in the way of the justice they so richly deserve.

Cindy and Maureen met in high school. It was a Roman Catholic High School in NJ. Yes, they are high school sweethearts. They fell in love right under the noses of their nuns and priests.

Imagine that!

One year there was a Valentine's Day dance at their high school. Cindy and Maureen got all dressed up and went as each other's date.

The good nuns turned them away at the door.

Disappointed and weeping, they got back into the car and started to drive home.

At one point, they pulled over to the side of the road to console each other. Maureen turned to Cindy and said, "I want to dance with you. Right here. Right now."

So, they got out of the car and walked out onto an open field where they embraced to dance.

"But, we don't have any music to dance to," said Cindy, who always has a firm grasp on the obvious.

"Sing to me," said Maureen, who is obviously creative and resourceful.

So, Cindy started singing the only song she really knew.

Last night, after the vows and rings were exchanged and the marriage was blessed, and after the wedding toast was made, Cindy told that story just before their first dance.

Then, she invited all the assembled guests - their children, their Very Large family, their high school friends, they lawyers, the folks from Lambda Legal, their co-workers and so many of us who had walked the journey with them - to join her in singing "their" song.

And so, a room full of over 200 people began to sing, with great joy and gusto:
Take me out to the ballgame
Take me out to the park
Buy me some peanuts and Cracker Jacks
I don't care if I never come back
So it's root, root, root for the home team
If no one wins it's a shame
For it's one, two, three strikes you're out
At the old ball game.
There may not be any crying in baseball, but there wasn't a dry eye in the house.

Fourteen states  - CA, CT, DE, IA, ME, MD, MA, MN, NH, NJ, NY, RI, VT, and WA - plus Washington, D.C.  - have marriage equality.
Only 36 more states to go, and then everyone can dance to their own unique wedding song.

Because amazing love and deep devotion to family can make believers of us all.


Kirkepiscatoid said...

The officiant sure has on nice boots! Oh, and the story is great, too. . God bless them both!

Elizabeth Kaeton said...

The boots! Of course you'd notice the boots! Believe it or not, those boots are about 30 years old. Bought 'em at the Dexter Outlet in Maine for $25.

I know, right? What can I say? They're comfortable.

And yes, it IS a great story, isn't it? The simple ones always are.

Shirley said...

Ok. I don't know about boots but I find myself sobbing about love

8thday said...

Mazel Tov!

I think my partner and I are going to do it next year, on our 25th anniversary. Right after finishing getting the one benefit of only one income considered for college financial aid. Romantic right?

William Cooper said...

The practical has its own romance.

Kirkepiscatoid said...

Hey, seems romantic enough to me, 8thday. But Elizabeth would accuse me of being *just* as romantic as Mrs. Conroy. (chuckle.)

Elizabeth Kaeton said...

8th Day - Congratulations. AS Mr. Cooper says, "The practical has its own romance."

Elizabeth Kaeton said...

Mr. Cooper - Right you are.

Elizabeth Kaeton said...

Kirke - I would indeed.

JCF said...

Heh-heh, I called it!

I saw the video (NJ Love Story) last week, and caught sight of Maureen's t-shirt at 0:43 (a Certain Church's Shield is apparent ;-/).

I *should* have guessed you would be involved w/ them, too, Lizbeth (you longtime NJ TEC priest, you)

Mazel Tov!

Elizabeth Kaeton said...

A very great time was had by all, JCF

alicia said...

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Anonymous said...

The greatest tragedy in today's society is the denigration of the value of men in the child-rearing process. Over 90% of prison inmates have no good recollection of a father. The idea of society supporting marriage without a man isn't the cause of this trend but it's a contributing factor.

Elizabeth Kaeton said...

Anonymous. I printed your comment only because it shows the way homophobia is now becoming more subtle. I have no idea what absent fathers has to do with lesbians getting married. I mean, you are blaming lesbians for men running away from their responsibilities to families AND blaming lesbians for the fact that over 90% of men who are in jail are there because their fathers abandoned them because - why? - lesbians are getting married.


I understand why you wouldn't want to actually put your name next to that kind of comment, but I won't be printing the next comment you make unless you 'own' it and give your name.