In conservative Alabama, celebrating a ‘God-written’ union of man and woman

July 1, 2013

WILSONVILLE, Ala. — Up on the grassy hill as the sun sank on Saturday evening, here came the groom, a man in khakis and a bow tie, and here came the bride, a woman in a long white gown of satin and lace.

Several hundred dearly beloved stood and looked on as she walked down the clover-covered aisle, a ceremony suddenly more momentous to the couple and those gathered for what they were celebrating — marriage as the natural, God-ordained union between a man and a woman.

The happy pair, Randall Jared Wilson, 24, and Amanda Joy Horsley, 23, stood arm in arm at an altar woven with leaves. The Rev. Brent Philips held a gilded Bible in his left hand and a microphone in his right.

“Hello!” he said, and just then the mike began to malfunction. “Hello? Check, check?” A truck swooshed by along a two-lane road beyond the pines and crepe myrtles. “All right,” he said, smiling, deciding to discard the mike and raise his voice. “Here we go!”

And so, three days after the U.S. Supreme Court legally bolstered same-sex marriage and at a time when a majority of Americans accept the idea, a wedding was underway among people who do not.

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