Provo temple. The room is full, waiting for the session to start. Soothing silence in this sea of white.
To the front, on the second row, left and right, a young woman and a young man. A dazzling couple on their way to be married. Scores of family members fill the pews around them, perhaps four rows thick. None could have missed the packed group in the hallway as people were waiting for the previous session to end. Two beaming clans, several generations, pioneer stock. An assembly of dynasty Mormons, from great-grandparents to ranges of descendants. The bride, beautiful in her exquisite satin dress.
Temple workers softly take care of a few arrangements.
On one of the last rows, on a seat next to the center isle, sits a young man, around twenty-five. Small, Latin type. A temple worker offers him earphones.
– No, no, I understand, he whispers with a strong accent.
Left from him, a few feet away, across the isle, is his bride-to-be, a Chinese girl, petite. Own endowment. The dress, rented at the counter downstairs, fits her well.
– She needs Mandarin, whispers a matron to the temple worker.
The little box is regulated, earphones adjusted.
The groom glances at her, reassuring. She glances back, a valiant smile calming his concerns. They are on their own, separated by the isle and intensely together. They watch over each other, the whole session long. Converts. Pioneers.
The Celestial room is crowded. Reverently, joyfully, proudly crowded around a couple in the center.
The little Latin-Chinese pair stands in a corner, holding hands, all to themselves in their own serene radiance.
A temple worker leads them away to a sealing room.
Memories. My bride and I, twenty-seven years ago, in the Logan temple. No parents, no kin. Still, wholly fulfilled. Some pain, yes, but no regrets.