apparently there are no ministers in michigan

these days, i tend to officiate at about one wedding per year, at the most.  they’re always in california, and are a mixture of former junior highers and fellow junior high staff.  but some kind of weird alignment or worm hole has obviously appeared, because i’m officiating at three weddings in a 6 week period, and they’re all in michigan.  how random.

the first was this past weekend:  my childhood best friend, john mathers.  johnny and i became inseperable best friends in third grade; and except for a bit of individuation in middle school, stayed best friends through college (where we roomed together for a year).  he was the best man in my wedding (and i in his first wedding), and we’ve stayed close over the years, always picking up where we left off when we see each other once or twice a year.

the wedding was outdoors, on the edge of a lake, in 90-degree, high-humidity, michigan weather.  i was melting in my black suit.

john had a rough go with his first marriage (i often considered him my “job friend” – like the dude in the bible – because life just seemed so bitterly unfair to him, despite his off-the-charts integrity and big heart).  he ended up a single dad of three kids, and did an amazing job in that role (and has three wonderful kids, 6th grade through 10th grade).  john didn’t expect to get married again, as his focus was his kids.  neither did cathy, his new wife, a wonderful single mom (of a college student) who met john through a small group.  their story is a gorgeous picture of life restored, and it was such an honor to be a part of their day.  one of the highlights of the day for me was when john’s 16 year-old daughter introduced me to one of her friends as her uncle.

next weekend, i’m officiating at the wedding of my cousin, just south of petosky, michigan (the northern part of the state), at boyne mountain.  that one will also be a full-on family reunion.  then, a month later, the last one is my niece, who’s getting married in the small michigan/indiana border town of niles.  my family will be with me for that one, and we’ll add a week of vacation in detroit.

time to get the suit dry-cleaned.

10 thoughts on “apparently there are no ministers in michigan”

  1. I feel your pain with the suit – we’re going to a wedding this coming weekend in Memphis and I’m thinking cargo shorts and Hawaiian shirt.

  2. I’m in Michigan, but all of us Pastor types are too busy doing Grad Parties. We will have to do another biggest loser after the Grad season (I think I put on an average of 10 pounds in June/July)

  3. brian — yeah, i did pick up a new one! my old one was too big, and i had one that fit, but was wool. so off to mens wearhouse it was!

  4. Too bad that you will be busy and I have to work the weekend. I live across the street from the mountain, literally. Have a good time “Up North.”

    Jeff Lutz

  5. Vacationing in Detroit? Is that an oxymoron? Just kidding. I’d love to give you tips of stuff to do if you are looking for good places to go in Motown. We love our city, but it gets quite a bad reputation around the country. We’re glad to have you visit.

  6. Mark, I grew up in Niles and now live in Detroit. Most of my family lives in Niles though. I didn’t know people vacation in Detroit. Hmmm…
    If you have some free time and want to talk youth, feel free to stop by Open Arms Lutheran Church in Belleville, MI.



  7. Detroit vacation – hit the zoo! Visit Canadia, OOOPAH in Greektown, Taco’s in Mexican Village, need i say more?

  8. There are plenty of ministers in Michigan….none as special as you. Thank you for contributing to are God blessed day.

    Love Cathy

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