Love is in the air! UKFR member Salute and his wife Annette have flown all the way from the good old USA to visit our mad band of pyromaniacs. And what better thing to do as soon as you land than declare your love on Valentines Day with a marriage blessing by none other than resident UKFR vicar Rocket Rev - followed by fireworks?

Rocket Rev (middle) starts the service for Keith ('Salute', left) and Annette

Dorset Episode III: And so, after the success of the first and second meetings UKFR members and pyromaniacs returned yet again to their secret base in the middle of Dorset, UK. This time, the theme was love!

With the date of this meeting coinciding with February 14th there was a distinctly romantic feeling in the air. But there was a further coincidence: It also marked the first anniversary of UKFR member Keith's (aka Salute in our forum) marriage to his wife Annette. To celebrate both this and their long journey from the USA to see us, Rocket Rev kindly agreed to Keith's request for a surprise wedding blessing service.

"The service was in effect a "Thanksgiving for Marriage" - but not the usual Church of England one, rather a special edition that I wrote myself!" explains Rocket Rev.

"Keith had asked if I could be allowed to do such a thing for him and Annette as their Dorset visit coincided with their first wedding anniversary. He asked for it to be a surprise for Annette! So he and I knew about it - and so did Gerry and Pepsi who I involved. We planned to surprise Annette and also the rest of the UKFR folk. We really had fun with our plotting - especially plotting my appearance in full robes!"

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1: Rocket Rev starts the surprise wedding blessing! 2: Presenting a copy of the Torah 3: A love rocket for each of them (to be fired later, of course!) 4: Reaffirmation of vows 5: The happy couple 6: Blessing over

"Keith and Annette are Jewish" continues Rocket Rev. "The Jewish and Christian religions have a common heritage. Keith asked for an explicitly religious service conducted by me as a Vicar. So I produced a service which drew on our common heritage - hence the use of the Christian Old Testament / Jewish Torah. The blessing was in fact the Aaronic one - a significant blessing in both Jewish and Christian circles. The service included a reaffirmation of their commitment to each other and I rewrote the usual renewal of wedding vows to suit this.

"The aim was to do something meaningful and serious, whilst being lighthearted. So I found a way of weaving the religious and fireworks into it all! Hence the presentation of a copy of the Torah along with the Love Heart rockets and the celebration firework display."

It was a really moving blessing which was enjoyed by all, none more so than the couple themselves, and a wonderful prelude to the following night's firework mayhem. With Gerry's roaring log fire and copious decorations arranged by Pepsi and Tony, it was also a brilliant setting too.

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1: Keith enjoys a stiff drink as they pose with their love rockets (oo-er!) 2: They were also presented with an anniversary engraved plate from Gerry and the Sky Monkeys 3: Rocket Rev chills out with his "Whassuup!" T-shirt

No surprises that after the service it was time to retire to a large field and round off the evening with a small fireworks display - featuring their heart rockets!

Blessing Fireworks : Enjoy some of the blessing followed by the fireworks. 13Mb DivX video file (full screen). Please "right click" and save to your PC before playing.
Marriage Blessing : Full clip of the marriage blessing by Rocket Rev (no fireworks in this clip!). 33Mb Windows Media video file (lower quality due to length - 13 mins). Please "right click" and save to your PC before playing.

The happy couple thank Rocket Rev for a moving and meaningful blessing

©2006 UK Firework Review