And so dear friends…What a joyous opportunity it will be to get to review the events and confirmations of the past two months! So we first met in Trinidad in May 2010, but at this time we were not destined to entertain longer than a brief 5 minute conversation, and even this conversation was not one on one. But the seed must somehow have been sown, and the process it needed to germinate over the following months took its course. One beautiful [warm] December afternoon I arrived in Dominica; heedless, I might add of what was soon to transpire, as my only intention for coming to Dominica was to meet with the friends of the Carib Territory and learn to appreciate their ways, traditions, to learn of their spirit of community life and God-willing in exchange for all of this offer some sort of service to this wonderful People. So when I asked Denali about this possibility of visiting the friends there, she had this deep intuitive feeling that it was very important that I come to Dominica. The reason she said was veiled to her but she said to me that she felt that my presence as a young male Baha’i would have an edifying influence on the young Baha’i men there and also their friends. And so we decided this must be the reason.
By the bounty of Baha’u’llah we were blessed to get to serve together quite intensely for the first 9 days of this 10 day visit. During the first 8 days both of us were clueless about what Baha’u’llah was planning for the 9th day. So what happened on the 9th day…wouldn’t you all like to know….ahh time for a coffee break….oh wait…we’re fasting….well alright then, fair enough. So along with a very special and radiant youth from the community, Denali and I had taken the bus to town [ Roseau ] to visit this youth’s mother in the hospital. Her mom needed blood for an upcoming surgery. Despite having donated blood to another of the friends a few weeks ago, Denali tried to see how she could avoid saying this directly to the nurses because they have a 90 day policy between donations and she really wanted to give blood to her friend. Unfortunately, and fortunately, the Dominican hospital staff keep good records and Denali was Denied her benevolent wish.
But two donors were needed. So after the lady’s husband gave blood, it was my turn. So they drew the blood. They require you to rest for 30mins after giving blood so they can observe your recovery. While I was lying there, sipping Vita Malt, Denali had the wonderful idea of reading me some stories from the teaching adventures of Jenabe Caldwell. We picked stories at random and as she read, we set foot into and entered these glorious tales. This experience was so tender and inspiring. And now friends, some of you may already know this about Denali or I but for those who don’t it is important to know we each had strong conviction and nearly a sense of duty that as Baha’is we should be pioneering the global movement toward inter-racial marriage….this to the extent that we were very closed to the idea of investigating the potentiality of marriage with anyone who was of white skin. So it is in this context that one should view the first 8 days of our time serving together in Dominica. While during this time we did come to recognize character qualities that were very attractive, we didn’t make the connection to the possibility of marriage. In the same way as we may appreciate a beautiful work of art, that we know we have no intention of purchasing, we simply praised the Divine Hand which painted the other. It was not until that morning in the hospital, and the reading of those poignant stories that we each began to feel the veil before being lifted…and this moment was really the breaking of the dawn of our relation. What followed was a constant stream of confirmations which have not stopped but simply carried us along and guided us down this path of investigation, discovery and delight. While these confirmations have carried us steadily these past two months, from realization, to investigation, to consent, [ just yesterday we made our wedding rings ] the process has not felt in the least bit rushed. Everything about this journey including its timing has felt so natural, and organic, as though we are sitting peacefully in garden observing the growth of this plant through its various stages and beholding with wonderment the tender care of Divine Gardener as he waters us, and prunes us and leads us on our upward climb.
Location: The Land; Lyle, Washington
Date: 21 May 2011
We will send more wedding information later through email.