From the time we are little girls, women often dream of the day we will become brides. The white dress, the long veil, the bushels of flowers and the soft candlelight…
But in our bridal fantasies, there is always one thing that dramatically differs from one bride to the next: the groom. Tall, short, rich, poor — we all envision something different waiting for us at the end of that aisle.
However, for a very special group of women in the world, there will be no man standing next to them at the altar. Despite arranging a wedding ceremony, there will be no first kiss as man and wife; no exchange of rings; no towering wedding cake.
These women are called “consecrated virgins,” and around the world, there are only about 3,000 of them; in the United States, there exist only around 215.
But thanks to these amazing photos taken by the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend, the story of one consecrated virgin is now going viral.
What do you think about this special marriage ceremony? Let us know in the comments below, and please SHARE!
When 38-year-old Jessica Hayes began planning her wedding, she went through all the same steps and stresses that every bride must.
She had to pick a date, build out a guest list, and design her invitations.
RSVP’s had to be recorded and a reception needed to be planned…
And of course, a dress and veil had to be carefully selected, tried on, and tailored.
But when it came to the groom, Jessica didn’t have to do much planning.
There was no tuxedo to rent, boutonnières to select, or a groom’s gift to purchase. The reason?
Jessica’s special day was no ordinary wedding — because there was to be no human man beside her at the altar.
Jessica was marrying Jesus Christ.
The ceremony was called a “service of consecration,” and in it, Jessica would become a consecrated virgin — one of only 200 in the United States.
In this commitment of faith, Jessica had to approach the altar, lay herself down on the church floor, and swear to “persevere to the end of [her] days in the holy state of virginity and in the service of God and His Church.”
Now, after taking this very public vow of faith, Jessica looks forward to a long life of serving as the wife of Christ.