Year-end mass wedding for Filipino lovebirds in Hercules, Calif.
HERCULES, California — Glistening eyes were glued to the doors of St. Patrick Catholic Church here as loved ones and parishioners watched not one but six couples march down the aisle.
Love was in the air at noontime last December 30 as a dozen lovebirds who wanted their years of being together said “I do,” with Fr. Larry Young officiating over the sacrament of matrimony.
As the couples knelt to exchange their vows, close friends and loved ones reminisced on how it all started.
Retiree Ricky and seamstress Alma Delgado were introduced to each other in 1995 by a common friend and dated. Ricardo fell ill with brain aneurism and survived, but he had to endure separation from Alma when she worked in the Middle East in 2003. A year later, Ricardo immigrated to the US, and the lovebirds parted ways. Alma traced Ricardo in his Cavite residence. Their renewed correspondence revealed Ricardo had remained a bachelor and so, they got together again at a simple civil wedding in July 2010.
Nurses Danny and Genevieve Ramirez were both working in 2010 at a rehabilitation and nursing care center in Marin. Soon enough they also spent time together hiking, skiing, snowboarding, biking and weekend camping in the mountains of Canada, Tahoe, Marin headlands, Lake Chabot’s winding hills, or savoring the twinkling stars above the sky of Yosemite. In 2014 Genevieve thought she was only going to watch video outtakes of their Hayward to Hercules run. But when she answered the doorbell, there was Danny on his knees and popping out the most important question with a ring. She gladly accepted. That same year, they united in a civil wedding and had Danielle Genna.
It was not love at first sight when Chris and Charito Dobson first met at work in 2000. Friendship blossomed into romance and soon enough, even with their diverse backgrounds, bickering and obstacles, they ended up in a civil wedding in 2006.
Jun and Dianne Asuncion’s fateful meeting at a relative’s home in Las Piñas was inconsequential. Jun was reeling from caring for his cancer-stricken wife whom he lost years later. But in July 22, 2011, they finally got married in Makati and had two beautiful children. Jun and Dianne looked forward to a renewal of their vows as they pray for strength in their married life.
Love bloomed in Kuala Lumpur in 1996 for neighbors Eduard and Hilda Salvador, who first met at a birthday party of an officemate. Ed suffered a mild stroke while in Malaysia, which necessitated his return to Manila. In late January 1998, Hilda visited him in his house in Manila and stayed to comfort him. Hilda’s conservative mother was not pleased and promptly required their union to be legal. Ed and Hilda were married in San Jose, Batangas on February 4, 1998 with a handful of their nearest of kin witnessing the civil wedding.
The introduction of retiree Paquito and accountant Annie Cabural began an exchange of sweet thoughts through texts and calls in March 2007. When Annie was 40, she and Paquito married in civil court in September 2007. After four months of honeymoon in the Philippines, Paquito started the petition process for her legal immigration, which was finally realized in March 2009. In 2012, they attended the Christian Life Program (CLP) of Couples for Christ (CFC) where they realized their union had to be blessed in the Catholic Church.