Enamored, fascinated and star-struck. That’s what I was as I witnessed on television Prince Harry and Meghan’s royal wedding at Windsor, England. I do not usually gush over royalty, or become bewitched by pomp and splendor. But I do, for Meghan and Harry. Watching them being wed in real time entranced me. The pageantry was remarkable and spectacular. Yet there was a simplicity about it, a beguiling warmth and genuineness that shaved off the stiffness and topped all solemnity. I just couldn’t take my eyes and myself away from the full coverage on CNN. I was definitely hooked. It would be no surprise if the millions who watched this glorious event felt the same as I have. If you watched, you would understand.
I slept little, or not all; stayed up all of last night to the morning and listened to commentaries and reports of the royal wedding. I still do at this moment, as I write this blog. There is something captivating about this couple, something so real and unpretentious, something that will stay for a very long time. At the ceremony, novelty partnered with tradition. Diversity gave zest to nobility. And love reigned. The prince and his bride brimmed with love for each other. Love that they could hardly hold back as they looked and smiled at each other, love plain in their eyes, in their faces. With the wonders of technology, the world saw, and the world celebrated that blessed match.
Bishop Michael Curry, in his message at the ceremony, captured the thrust of the whole story. Love. He was moved by the love he saw between bride and groom, a love that transcended into joy among those around. Rev. Curry elaborated on the power of love. Remarkably astonishing was his impassioned and bold preaching of the good news about Jesus Christ, animatedly exhorting a love in Christ, a love that is not just a sentiment but a way of life. With this love, he said, there can be panacea for the troubles and deficiencies in the world. With this love – redemptive love, he called it – there can be joy in the world – like the joy that Meghan and Harry hold for each other. The world needs this kind of love, he said.
Rev. Curry clinched his message by addressing the aristocracy of England, the famous and the rich as well as the beloved and related in the audience, the British prince and his American bi-racial bride of African-American lineage – calling all “brothers and sisters” – and he being an African-American himself. He pleaded, the world would do better with the power of love. A courageous, gripping message that moved, inspired and awed. I watched on TV, and I was awed. When Harry and Meghan pronounced their vows with the leading of Rev. Justin Welby (Archbishop of Canterbury), cheers surged from the crowd, and I cheered, too. In an interview after the ceremony, Rev. Welby stated that when people love each other, they are in God, because God is love.
A gospel choir sang a meaningful rendition of “Stand by Me.” It wasn’t hard for anyone to perceive the significance of the song, the implications saturated in the union between a beloved royal prince and an American Hollywood actress once divorced, a humanitarian with a compassionate heart for the children in Africa where she spent some mission trips, a strong advocate for women, a proponent of diversity, a beautiful woman of poise and dignity determined to bring in the noble convictions of a commoner while learning the customs of royalty. As “Stand by Me” was sung, Meghan and Harry gazed and smiled at each other, communicated without words, as though they were singing the song to each other. Now you see why I am enamored by this couple. Their love is captivating.
My wedding watch didn’t miss the appeal and attractiveness of the outfits of bride and groom. The prince looked stately and handsome in his formal military garb. The bride appeared stunning in a gown cut along simple, elegant lines, with a long, gossamer veil that softly trailed. Family and guests were stunning as well. Of course, the Queen and her husband, Prince Phillip, stood out in the royal entourage that included Prince Charles and Camilla, William and Kate. Particularly impressive was Meghan’s mother, a picture of quiet beauty and strength, dressed in mellow pastel green. At times, the camera focused on the mother’s loving face brimming with maternal pride, with eyes glistening with tears and, I guess, a heart overwhelmed and grateful for the blessings. Meghan was her little princess, before the latter became Harry’s princess, before she became England’s duchess, before the world claimed her as its own. A mother so happy, yet humble in demeanor.
The lovely ceremony, many predict, is a pleasant harbinger of change welcomed by the monarchy, a metamorphis expected to bring it closer to its constituents. The wedding looked rich in grandeur, and it was also heartwarming and genuine. It was far from the typical royal wedding of pomp and circumstance. It showed the heart of the present monarchy, a willingness to adjust to modern times and trends. It will be interesting to watch what happens next and see how great an influence the Duke and Duchess of Sussex will have on the monarchy and the country, and to the world.
You can see, I am enamored by this handsome couple. Expect me to watch them in the news and reports of their lives together. Yes, it has something to do with their romance. Yes, it has something to do with the rich humor between them and some bits of healthy mischief. Yes, it is all about love. Love that touches you and me. A love that emanates joy. Rev. Curry was right – the world needs love, simple, pure and genuine. We need to see more of that in the world.
You can expect this star-struck baby boomer Lola to gush more, to blog more about Harry and Meghan. More than that, expect me to say a prayer for them, many, many times. I am enamored by this fairy tale, a tale authored by God.