Veteran church communications hand, and prison ministry stalwart Val Hymes graces us with a lovely article for the Washington Post's Web site on her 55-year interfaith marriage:
We knew there would be trouble right from the start when the rabbi said he would not perform our marriage on campus because the Columbia University chapel has "Christian windows."
But we did not anticipate that during the wedding my mother, a recent convert to Roman Catholicism, would stand outside crying and try to keep people from entering because, she explained, the chapel "was not consecrated." (When the chapel was built, the president of the university refused to consecrate it for any one denomination so that it could be used by all. So much for that.)
This is not to say we weren't expecting some drama from my mother, who 55 years ago tried to persuade renowned theologian Reinhold Niebuhr to talk us out of the marriage. (He blessed us instead.) When my engagement to a Jew had been announced, I received a telegram from her accusing me of hammering the nails into Christ's feet. Both of us were working and going to school full time and hadn't realized that the announcement was to be published on Good Friday.