Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Thursday 24 June |
The Solemnity of the Nativity of St. John the Baptist
home iconLifestyle
line break icon

Take a peek behind one of the first socially distanced weddings in Wales


Alasdair Stewart | Facebook | Fair Use

Cerith Gardiner - published on 07/06/20

The ceremony Included a Zoom Bible reading from the other side of the world.

Like many couples around the world, Elizabeth Facer and Ian Choi had to radically change their wedding plans when COVID-19 broke out. In what was meant to be a wedding with 300 guests on June 20, the couple finally said “I do” in front of just four people and under some very strict conditions.

The wedding, which took place in the bride’s home church of Capel Fron in North Wales, was one of the first in the country since the coronavirus outbreak began. The couple actually petitioned the government to be able to safely wed.

The 22-year-old bride shared with the BBC, “Once we realized it was going to have to be a socially distant wedding I went through all of the stuff in my head of like, it’s not going to be all of us at my parents’ house, it’s not going to be how I had imagined it.” However, she turned her head to all the positive things.

Wedding Joy

Read more:
Wedding photographer’s question leaves bride in tears (PHOTO)

The ceremony didn’t get off to the most romantic start — the couple had to listen to strict hygiene guidelines read out by the church’s minister outside the church before entering the building. The bride then had to enter the church that her parents had decorated 72 hours previously (to make sure the building was kept virus-free) through the building’s exit, via the bathrooms, with her father walking her down the aisle, keeping a strict 2 meters distance.

Once ready to exchange their vows, the couple remained safely apart from their only live guests: Facer’s parents, who acted as witnesses, the minister and the official registrar. Choi’s parents were unable to travel from their home in Hong Kong, but the couple ensured they were involved in their marriage by asking them to read from the Bible over Zoom.

With no singing allowed, the couple selected hymns that they played through a laptop and Choi acted as his own groomsman. The rest of the bride’s family watched the wedding via the internet from an unlikely venue: the local rail station.

Although the wedding reception might not have been as elegant as they’d planned, the couple drove off to a nearby estate, with their guests in separate cars, and they all enjoyed a picnic — tailgate style.

While the newlyweds may not have had their “dream” wedding, their dramatically pared down celebration demonstrates just how much the couple wanted to be united in the eyes of God, and that desire is something they’ll be able to celebrate for the rest of their lives together.

Cíntia Bonfante Pereira and Jose Vitor Flach

Read more:
Groom surprises bride during their wedding ceremony with the most thoughtful gesture

Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in seven languages: English, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Daily prayer
And today we celebrate...

Top 10
Philip Kosloski
Padre Pio’s favorite prayer of petition
Zoe Romanowsky
Animated film shows the power of fatherhood in just one minute
Bret Thoman, OFS
What Padre Pio saw in the Spanish Flu of 1918
Eric Clapton, Luciano Pavarotti, East London Gospel Choir
J-P Mauro
Hear Clapton and Pavarotti sing a prayer to the “Holy Mothe...
Zelda Caldwell
Catholic priest’s chapel is finalist in “Shed of the Year&#...
Philip Kosloski
Can Catholics use the Enneagram personality system?
Fr. Patrick Briscoe, OP
4 Ways to understand God as Father
See More
Get Aleteia delivered to your inbox. Subscribe here.